Naval War College Review


As a nation of travelers and traders, naval power has long played a central role in the defense of American interests abroad. The oceans bordering North America have been both a barrier and a highway, separating the United States from potential enemies, connecting it to allies, and providing a venue for commerce and trade . Geography dictated the prominent role of naval forces in American foreign policy during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, and with the emergence of the United States as a military and economic superpower, Americans have come to depend even more heavily on naval forces as foreign policy instruments.