Wednesday, May 25, 2016
From the Prologue:
As a fast-moving ship approached the Dauphin off the coast of Portugal, Captain Richard O'Brien saw no cause for alarm. On this warm July day in 1785, America was at peace, and there were many innocent reasons for a friendly ship to come alongside. Perhaps it was a fellow merchant ship needing information or supplies. Perhaps the ship's captain wanted to warn him of nearby pirates.
In 1785, the same year Richard O'Brien was captured by pirates, Thomas Jefferson learned that all politics, even transatlantic politics, are personal.
And a bonus excerpt from the Author's Note:
This is the story of how a new nation, saddled with war debt and desperate to establish credibility, was challenged by four Muslim powers. Our merchant ships were captured and the crews enslaved. Despite its youth, America would do what established western powers chose not to do: stand up to intimidation and lawlessness
Tired of Americans being captured and held for ransom, our third president decided to take on the Barbary powers in a war that is barely remembered today but is one that, in many ways, we are still fighting.
-Brian Kilmeade and Don Yaeger, Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates: The Forgotten War That Changed American History