The Revolutionary War

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Factors contributing to the American victory in the Revolutionary War

Summary:

Key factors contributing to the American victory in the Revolutionary War included strong leadership from figures like George Washington, effective alliances with France and Spain, strategic guerrilla warfare tactics, and British logistical challenges. Additionally, high motivation and morale among American troops, as well as widespread support from local populations, played crucial roles in securing independence.

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What factors contributed to the Patriots' victory in the American Revolution?

The reasons for the success of the Patriots can be enumerated and explained in a relatively simple and straightforward manner, maybe surprisingly so for the complexity and importance of the event:

1) The British were divided on the proper way to stop the rebellion and even on the question of whether the Americans were justified in rebelling against the Crown. The Patriots regarded themselves as merely standing up for their rights as Englishmen. They believed they were entitled to the rights enshrined in the (English) Constitution and in the principles of the Whig Party to which they were faithful. Many of the British military commanders were actually somewhat in sympathy with the Americans and had no intention of prosecuting a "total war" against them, since the English on both sides of the Atlantic were regarded by many as essentially the same people. Despite the popular view of the war which has come down to us, much of it due to propaganda from the Patriot side, in many instances the British prosecuted the conflict weakly and did not take the rebellion seriously.

2) The British eventually found that they could take territory militarily, but unlike in the conventional wars fought on the European continent, this did not result in the surrender of the enemy or bring the war closer to a conclusion. As long as Washington kept his army intact, the war went on. When Howe took Philadelphia in 1777, it meant virtually nothing in the progress of the war. This was despite Philadelphia being the most important city in the Colonies. The conflict was spread out over too wide a territory for one battle to be important. The rebels had multiple armies that could spring into action at short notice, such as the force that defeated Burgoyne at Saratoga. Their victory at Saratoga essentially nullified Howe's victory in Pennsylvania, which was short-lived and meaningless anyway.

3) Individual battle victories, like the conquering of territory, were inconsequential in the long run. In the Southern campaign in 1780-81 Nathaniel Greene lost every battle he fought against the British, but still wore them down until Cornwallis had no viable option but to hole up in Yorktown and wait for relief, which never came because the French fleet arrived first and blockaded the British on one side, with Washington's and Rochambeau's armies on the other.

4) The entry of France on the Patriot side in 1778 probably tipped the balance and nullified whatever chances ever existed for a British victory. The American Revolution had now become another in Europe's endless series of international conflicts. The protection of their possessions in the West Indies, with their valuable commodities, now became of more significance to the British than winning the war on the American mainland. In 1781, after six and a half years of endless expenditures and no progress, culminating in defeat at Yorktown, Parliament realized the war was useless. The Whig opposition came into power, and the decision was made to recognize the independence of the Colonies, now the United States.

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What key factors led to the American victory in the Revolutionary War?

One of the most important reasons the Revolutionaries were more successful was that they had the home field advantage. They knew the terrain, and had sympathetic individuals everywhere to help them if they needed it. They also had home-grown malitia.
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What key factors led to the American victory in the Revolutionary War?

The 3rd post lists some of the main reasons, and I totally agree with the 5th post that gives reference to France's recognition of the colonies. In addition to their financial support, France's naval and ground support provided during the final year were major contributions to the American victory.

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What key factors led to the American victory in the Revolutionary War?

One essential factor was the support of France. The assistance of the French was absolutely key in the victory by the Americans. The French support provided the American forces with generals who knew the enemy British very well. French aid helped to pay the costs of the Revolution. General Lafayette was one of General Washington's strongest allies and advisors.

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What key factors led to the American victory in the Revolutionary War?

Are not the majority of these points largely relevant in a number of conflicts throughout history? These factors certainly crop up again and again when we examine a wide variety of wars and other nations' foreign policy commitments. #2 is also correct however in identifying foreign aid as another vital factor that contributed to victory.

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What key factors led to the American victory in the Revolutionary War?

You can compare many of the reasons the British eventually let the colonies go with the reasons why the United States got out of Vietnam:

1)  Distance - supply lines were thousands of miles long and expensive to maintain

2) Cost over time in blood and treasure

3)  Colonists' knowledge of the terrain

4)  Motivation of a volunteer army fighting for independence vs. a draftee army fighting to make it home again

5)  George Washington, Nathaniel Greene and Henry Knox - effective colonial Generals - British ones were hard to come by

6)  Colonies could play defense - all the revolutionaries had to do was survive, British had to conquer and pacify

7)  Support of a significant part of the local population

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What key factors led to the American victory in the Revolutionary War?

I am certain that you would be able to find many different reasons as to why the Americans won in the Revolutionary War.  I think that any standard US History book could indicate this.  I would propose that I sense that the knowledge of American geography helped to create an absolute realm of victory for American troops.  American soldiers fully understood their terrain better than the British did.  Leaders like Nathanael Greene and Francis "the Swamp Fox" Marion were skilled at being able to understand specific tactics matching specific situations better than the British did.  Additionally, strong leadership from Washington and other commanders helped to crystallize purpose and focus in action.  Finally, I would say that help from overseas was vitally important to American success.  Contributions from the French and the Spanish, amongst other nations, were critically important to the victory against the British, ensuring that control of economic and political control would rest with the Americans.

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