The War of 18121



The War of 1812 was a conflict between the nations of Great
Britain and The United States. This was a war fought over the rights
of non-combatant, neutral nations. Issues of this conflict included
impressment, rights to limit the navigation of soverign nations, and
how a nation could cope if these rights were violated.
In the late 1700’s and early 1800’s there were a series of
conflicts between Great Britain and France. Both of these countries
trampled the rights of non-combatants during the conflict. For
example, Britain forbade any American ship to sail to a port in the
Napolianic Empire. Likewise, the French government reciprocated
with similar laws against ports within the British Empire.
Due to very harsh conditions on those serving in the British
Naval Service, many men deserted. This forced the British to turn to
the practice of impressment. This is a process by which the British
effectively abducted servicemen to fill their ranks. The British
argument was that many of their men deserted and began serving in
the American Merchant Marine. This, in their opinion, justified them
in boarding American ships, and abducting their crew. At one point,
British impressment led to the Chesepeak Incident. During this
incident, when the American frigate refused to be boarded, it was
fired apon.
In order to deal with these maters, the American authorities
tried several peaceful interventions. In order to prevent
confrontations, the Embargo and Non-Intercourse Acts were passed.
These acts were in accordence with both British and French wishes.
However through all of these steps, the disrespect of American
soverignty continued. After exhusting all peacful options, the
Americans entered the War of 1812 with great hopes for a successful
outcome.



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