So, Who's Next?

Why a triumphant U.S. makes Syria and Iran nervous

It is in the nature of empires to confuse victory in battle with a mandate for unending dominion and to find out the hard way that the two are different. Hannibal was unable to translate triumph at Cannae into final victory over Rome; Napoleon, with all of Europe at his feet, disastrously marched the Grand Army into Russia. A little more than a year after the British slaughtered 11,000 Sudanese at the Battle of Omdurman while losing only 48 of their own men, they were on the run from the artillery and rifles of the Boers.

To be sure, past is...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!