In the aftermath of the American Revolutionary War, the Articles of Confederation acted as a sort of prelude to the Constitution of the United States. The Articles went through several drafts but were finally approved by the Second Continental Congress on November 15, 1777. After ratification by all the states, the Articles came into effect on March 1, 1781.
Under the terms of the Articles of Confederation, the 13 states remained free and sovereign, and Congress served as a central government that consolidated the Union. It did not have the power to regulate commerce or levy taxes. It did, however, have the authority to coin money, create a postal service, maintain an army and navy, manage affairs with Native Americans, declare war, and make treaties with foreign nations.
The inherent weakness of the central government as defined in the Articles of Confederation made the implementation of foreign policy difficult. For instance, the final ratification of the Treaty of Paris that formally...
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