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What do Articles VII and VIII mean in the Articles of Confederation?

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Articles VII and VIII of the Articles of Confederation are concerned with raising both armies and money in case of war. They highlight the weakness of the Articles of Confederation. The two articles in question allow the federal government to ask the states to provide troops and officers (Article VII), but it is up to the states to comply. They are under no obligation to supply what is asked.

In Article VIII, the states are told the federal government will essentially bill each state for the cost of defense based on each state's capacity to pay. It is up to each state, however, to decide to foot the bill: there is no mechanism to force the states to provide the money.

As we can see, this is an almost impossibly precarious way to run a country. It was not viable for the US government to have to run begging to the individual states in case of war to supply troops and funds. If a wealthy state didn't approve of a war and withheld funds, this could spell disaster for the country as a whole.

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