I really enjoyed this short book written not by a historian-academician, a man who only studies history, but rather by the historian-practitioner, a person who indeed personally made a dent on the course of the XX century.
Sir John Bagot Glubb, you really should look him up in case you never heard this name before. A warrior and a politician he was genuinely interested in the course of the human race history. He did a lot of research and presented his disquisition in this short but very informative book. One could feel his experience, his deep knowledge and wisdom behind each phrase.
His analysis is far from the mainstream academic writing, his language is far from the politically correct newspeak that is so loved by so many modern scholars.
This book is published 1978 but the clarity of vision is simply stunning. For example, the author in not so many words literally predicted how the Soviet Union will meet its end while all of so called sovietologists failed to do so iven in the last months of the Soviet empire. Sadly, the writer didn't live long enough to see with his own eyes the realisation of his brilliant prognosis.
The book is dedicated to the subject of power, how different nations in different conditions managed to create mighty empires - and how all of them eventually failed, with a special attention to the similar pattern of such geopolitical developments in different eras and locations.
A very interested hypothesis about average lifespan of an empire gives us some food for thought concerning the fate of the mightiest among the modern empires - the USA. But given the author's thought about distinction between Roman Republic and Roman Empire this idea could be even more intriguing. I say no more not to spoil the pleasure of this work's future readers.
Shortly: strongly recommend to all interested in politics and history. A book written by such man that reading about him you understand how Brits managed to create such a vast empire.