Since the establishment of the United States, American security has often been threatened and in a majority of these instances, the country responded to these threats in order to secure its liberty and welfare. Although America won its independence from Britain in 1776, the cruelty of the British toward America had not ceased, as can be seen in the Chesapeake Affair of 1807 in which a US naval ship was cornered by British ships . This Chesapeake Affair created hostilities between the United States and Britain and eventually led to the War of 1812. In a similar context, the Iraq War was also a direct response to the evidence supporting the fact that Iraq was connected to terrorist activities and the assumption that Iraq was hiding weapons of mass destruction. The US response to Russia in the Cold War is similar to the US response today and set the precedent for the Iraq War. Conclusively, both the War of 1812 and the current war in Iraq can be justified considering that the country was provoked in both instances and had every right to defend itself and its people from all foreign dangers.
The Chesapeake Affair is the perfect example of British infringement on American sovereignty. It was significant as it was the beginning of all British impressments toward the United States Navy. The British had cornered and then attacked the USS Chesapeake, an American naval ship, on the grounds that British sailors had fled onto American ships in order to rid themselves of all connections with the British . This action may have been proper from the perspective of the British but as the Americans see it, valuable sailors and therefore, citizens, had been lost to a country that had granted them independence half a century before. Condemnation of the British echoed all over the country in response to the unfair affair and the Britain was soon unpopular in the country, similar to the Revolutionary War . America made it clear that these impressments were not acceptable. Nevertheless, Britain chose to continue its actions.
The war of 1812 was a direct response to the stated impressments. With President James Madison’s Macon’s Bill No. 2 of 1810 stating that the US would trade with the nation that stopped the impressments first, the Non-Intercourse Act was repealed and both Britain and France were given the opportunity to take back their policies of interfering in American commerce . Although Madison thought the bill was “submissive and degrading in spirit” , he knew that this was the only way to secure a stable economy independent of outside interferences. Upon signing the Act, France agreed to stop impressing. This was more than enough incentive for the United States to immediately declare war on Britain, especially because Britain did not even consider taking back their past actions . America had been tolerating more than any country could handle and with all this in consideration, the war of 1812 was nothing but appropriate. These same ideas were used in the 20th and 21st centuries, beginning with the Cold War. The United States and Russia were the two leading forces in the Cold War and many of the complications had to do with the nuclear arms race . Russia was suspected of creating nuclear weapons and because of this, the United States and Russia agreed to sign the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, which stated that monitoring operations would be enforced to ensure that neither nation was creating missiles or any other military equipment meant to hurt the opposing nation . The Treaty can be seen as the US response to the assumption that Russia had been planning against them. The INF treaty, because of its circumstances, serves as a precedent for the United States’ involvement in the Iraq War. The primary reason for the United States being in the Iraq War is the evidence from the FBI that showed Iraq’s increased involvement with the terrorist groups who were directly related to the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center ....
Bibliography: Baker, James A., and Lee H. Hamilton. "The Iraq Study Group Report." FDLP Electronic Collection Archive. Vintage Books - A Division of Random House, Inc, 16 Dec. 2006. Web. 19 Dec. 2010. .
"BBC News - Iraq Inquiry - Day by Day Timeline of Evidence given." BBC News - Home. BBC © MMX, 8 Dec. 2010. Web. 19 Dec. 2010. .
"BBC News - Obama Hails Iraq 'milestone ' after Power-sharing Deal." BBC - Homepage. BBC © MMX, 12 Nov. 2010. Web. 19 Dec. 2010. .
Cray, Robert E Jr
Harney, Major W.W. "The Causes Of The War Of 1812." GlobalSecurity.org - Reliable Security Information. 27 Apr. 2005. Web. 19 Dec. 2010. .
Holmberg,Tom. "United States. Macon 's Bill, Number 2. 1 May 1810." The Napoleon Series. Apr. 2003. Web. 20 Dec. 2010. . *
"Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces [INF]." Federation of American Scientists
"Madison 's War Message, June 1, 1812." DISCovering U.S. History. Detroit: Gale, 2003. Gale Student Resources In Context. Web. 20 Dec. 2010. .
ProCon.org. "Did Saddam Hussein and his regime pose an immediate or imminent threat?" USIraq.ProCon.org. ProCon.org, 30 Jan. 2009. Web. 20 Dec. 2010. .
ProCon.org. "Did Saddam Hussein try to acquire uranium yellowcake or aluminum tubes for the purpose of developing nuclear weapons?"USIraq.ProCon.org. ProCon.org, 23 Jan. 2009. Web. 20 Dec. 2010. . *
Reaconing, By One. "Cold War." GlobalSecurity.org - Reliable Security Information. GlobalSecurity.org, 7 Sept. 2010. Web. 16 Dec. 2010. .
Tucker, George Holbert. "The Chesapeake-Leopard Affair - Norfolk Highlights - Chapter 30."Norfolk Historical Society - History of Norfolk, Virginia. Norfolk Historical Society. Web. 17 Dec. 2010. .
Please join StudyMode to read the full document