Political, And Economic Effects Of The US Navy During The Barbary Wars

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The Political, Strategic, and Economic Effect of the U.S. Navy during the Barbary Wars

Sean Bowman
HH104: American Naval History
September 20, 2017 War has been a dynamic part of American history since its colonial days and the French and Indian War. Yet at that time, there was no such entity as the United States Navy. As America became an independent country and matured, so did its fighting forces. The Navy, in particular, went on to be involved in almost every major conflict that the United States would take part in. However, in the Navy’s early stages, its stability was low and direction unclear. Due to America’s young state, there emerged (and still continues today) an equilibrium that, in order for the Navy to be successful, …show more content…

However, it appears that this is the area where America had the most success. The question might be posed, “Well, how is that possible? Think of all the horrible losses, that were just previously stated and the point that the American Navy was no match for the Royal Navy.” Well that is true, except the American Navy was not formed for the sole purpose of combating the Royal Navy. Washington knew that America would never be able to match the power of the Royal Navy. That’s why when he formed Washington’s Navy, he did soin a particular fashion, which was to raid British commerce. It’s also why John Paul Jones was successful in his campaign across the Atlantic. He had a task to carry out and accomplished it. The same goes for Washington’s Navy. For all the ships that failed miserably in fighting the Royal Navy directly, yes they did lose the battles. However, these head to head battles with the British fleet were never a primary objective of the American Navy. Even so, an example of a loss like this that still benefitted strategy could be the Battle of Valcour Island. Here Benedict Arnold lost all his ships and many men. By all means, it was a horrible loss. Yet, it did contribute to the strategic needs of America. Because the British had been lured so far inland, they were forced to take their men and spend the winter in Canada. These events, ultimately led to the victory at Saratoga . Thus, it is easy to see that although, the American Navy was neither large nor powerful, it executed very well in fulfilling the strategic needs of

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