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Foreign Policy in George Washington's Presidency.

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Eunice Yoo US History AP Block 2 9/17/03 Foreign Policy in George Washington's Presidency The domination of foreign policy in George Washington's presidency did not exist until the second term in 1792. The absence of foreign policy in the first term of Washington's presidency was due to the urgent need of a stable government. Washington's first term was so preoccupied with the construction of a firm governing and financial system that foreign policies were not present. Contrary to the first term, the second term consisted of a domination of foreign relations regarding a number of treaties and bitter quarrels with foreign nations. Washington even mentions foreign policy in his farewell address to show the emphasis of importance of his foreign policy. Although foreign relations preoccupied the second term of Washington's presidency, the first term lacked foreign relations. Initially, the establishment of a firm governing system busied Washington's first four years in office. ...read more.


Moreover, the United States was on the verge of war with Britain. In hopes of destroying the animosity between the Americans and the British, the Jay Treaty was signed in 1794 which allowed British troops off U.S. soil but in return the United States was obligated to pay of their debt owed to the British. Not only did the Jay Treaty keep America tied with the British, but it tested the Franco-American alliance and the relations between the French and the Americans went from bad to worse. Although an unpopular pact, the Jay Treaty led to the establishment of the Pinckney Treaty in 1795 which tied the United States with Spain in a pact that granted the United States land and navigation of the Mississippi River. Thus after an absence of foreign policy in his first term, Washington's second term became flooded with foreign relations and quarrels that tied the United States to European countries through pacts and treaties. ...read more.


Finally, while the first four years of Washington's presidency dealt with the fixing the problems within his own country, the next four years had to do with foreign affairs and standing by his foreign policy. The basis for a new government was so essential and needed in America that Washington occupied himself during his first term in rebuilding the country that he was not concerned with foreign affairs until the second term. However, during Washington's next four years in office he incorporated foreign policy into his presidency. Treaties and events such as the Jay Treaty, Pinckney Treaty, and the Genet Affair tied the United States with European nations while the Treaty of Greenville connected the Americans with the Native Americans. In fact, foreign policy became so dominant in Washington's second term of presidency that he addressed it in his farewell address advising his fellow countrymen to not engage in permanent alliances with other nations. Therefore, the importance and dominance of foreign policy were not shown through the first four years of Washington's administration but definitely became visible by the time his second term started. ...read more.

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