When the British Army played itself out of the American colonies, it was to the tune “The World Turned Upside Down”. It was an event of huge significance to global history. Freed of the burden of removing the French from the American colonies, Britain expanded its interests into Africa, Asia and the Pacific, while the colonists were free to expand across North America from their bases on the East Coast.
In 1914, the world stumbled into war and set the seeds for the 1939-1945 War, and the turmoil that followed into the second half of the 20th Century.
The 1914-1918 War set the beginning of the end of the British Empire, many of the next generation of leaders having been killed in the trenches, with much of the British gold reserves having been shipped to the United States to pay for munitions.
The Crash of 1929 set the end for the British Empire as the country moved off the gold standard.
In 1939, appeasement ended and World War Two began. An isolationist US tried hard to avoid entering the war but was eventually prompted when the Japanese attacked at Pearl Harbour.
In 1945 a new world order started to form, with the US defending Western Democracy against the Soviet Union. That global conflict ended with an impoverished Soviet Union collapsing. Suddenly there was no world order because the US was left as the only super power and global terrorism appeared to emerge as the next global threat.
During the last weeks, financial crisis has begun to trigger the formation of the next world order. Western banking stands at the door of a new Depression. Temporarily, total disaster has been stalled by the US Federal Government nationalizing the liabilities created by uncontrolled banking greed, having allowed those failed bankers to privatize the profits.
The roller coaster ride will continue for a time, but it will leave a world of uncertainty and power shifts that increase the prospects of major world conflict.