In the nineteenth century, this guy Otto von Bismarck in Germany basically made Germany into one of the most modern, militarised countries at the time. He did it by fighting lots of wars and doing lots of deals.
He had all these treaties with other countries which would ensure German hegemony. However, this led directly to WWI. The failure of the system was that he assumed that Germany would always have the upper hand in Europe.
Like dominoes, the treaties designed to ensure German hegemony brought Europe into a catastrophic war, treaties engineered 30 years before, not equipped to deal with a changing Europe and changing power structures.
America is kind of like Germany in this situation. It was heavily involved in propping up this regime, crushing that one, in the middle east, from iran in the seventies right up until the iraq war. This, in turn, allowed Israel to grow from strength to strength.
The recession coupled with the Arab Spring means, as well as Obama's pledge to take troops out of Afghanistan and Iraq, AS WELL as the fact that new developments in oil extraction means that America might not even need to depend on foreign oil any more (and hence why bother hassling the middle east anymore?); all of this means that America's influence in the region is waning and will wane some more.
Meanwhile, the Arab countries are more self-confident than they've been in years, and Israel has started bombing their brethren ... the math points towards war if the situation escalates anymore. What do you think? What will this mean for the world we live in?