PAX Britannica : Ruling the Waves and Keeping the Peace before Armageddon
When at last peace descended with the end of the Napoleonic War and the War of 1812, British statesmen sought to enhance their new-won world order. They had to seek security under financial restraint. They pared back the Navy.
The put their faith in bases as 'anchors of empire' on every ocean and annex. Profit and power were twin pillars of state thinking, to which were added freedom of navigation, the end of the slave trade, the crusade against piracy and above all slavery. In addition, the Navy took up surveying the waters of the world, as an inducement to safe navigation and prosperous trade.
This book by world-expert Barry Gough examines the period of Pax Britannica, in the century before World War I. Following events of those 100 years, the book follows how the British failed to maintain their global hegemony of sea power in the face of continental challenges. How they made accommodations with Japan in order to secure their interests against Imperial Russia, a new Pacific power.
How they faced the insurmountable threat of Imperial Germany on the Continent of Europe. And how, apart from the Foreign Office and the Admiralty, the British state was largely unprepared for the war that came in 1914, and the crisis of 1914, which marks the end of Pax Britannica.The long recessional followed, with the United States forming the new naval power of the twentieth century. From the British to the American naval ascendancy the fate of the world turned.
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