The Pirate Coast

The Pirate Coast

Thomas Jefferson, the First Marines, and the Secret Mission of 1805

Book - 2005
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In an attempt to stop the legendary Barbary Pirates of North Africa from hijacking American ships, William Eaton set out in 1805 on a secret mission to overthrow the government of Tripoli. The operation was sanctioned by President Thomas Jefferson, but at the last moment he grew wary of "intermeddling" in a foreign government, and Eaton set off without national support. Short on supplies, given very little money and only a few men, Eaton's mission seemed doomed from the start. But he improbably triumphed, recruiting a band of European mercenaries in Alexandria, along with some Arab cavalry and Bedouin fighters, and leading them on a march across the Libyan Desert. The success of the event is immortalized in the Marines' Hymn, but Jefferson never allowed Eaton the fame he craved.--From publisher description.
Publisher: New York : Hyperion, c2005
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9781401300036
Branch Call Number: 973.47 Z12p 2005
Characteristics: viii, 432 p., [8] p. of plates : ill, maps ; 25 cm


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Mar 28, 2011

Timely and interesting history of America's initial engagement in a foreign civil war describing the first time the American flag was ever planted on foreign soil. This book is particularly timely with the US involvement in the current battles in Libya.

I found the analysis interesting in examining Jefferson's foreign policy and how he adapted to realities like the Barbary Pirates.


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