"The fate of empires is very often sealed by the interaction of war and debt. That was true of the British Empire, whose finances deteriorated from the First World War onwards, and of the Soviet Union. Defeat in Afghanistan and the economic burden of trying to respond to Reagan's technically flawed but politically extremely effective Star Wars program were vital factors in triggering the Soviet collapse. Despite its insistent exceptionalism, America is no different," - John Gray.

Until the US scales back its imperial ambitions across the Middle East and seriously cuts its entitlement state, the country's global hegemony will come to an abrupt and humiliating end.