Remember not so long ago the Navy SEALS dispatched Somali pirates who were terrorizing our merchant ships, and who had kidnapped the crew for ransom.
That very practice of robbing our merchants vessels, and kidnapping the crew for ransom or slavery began in the late 18th century.
Back then it was commonplace for Muslim terrorists to carry out unprovoked attacks on American ships sailing in the seas of northern Africa. In fact, these Muslim terrorists were fulfilling their faithful duty of committing jihad against the Infidels.
According to the Quran, nations who do not acknowledge the Prophet Muhammad are sinners; which gives Muslims the right and duty to plunder and enslave those who do not believe.
In 1786, Thomas Jefferson–then the Ambassador to France–attempted to negotiate peace with the Tripoli’s Ambassador to Britain and curb these unprovoked attacks. In order to avoid attacks, the United States agreed to pay dhimmitude or brides to some of the Northern African countries who were extorted the country.
Though the payments were being made, the attack continued from the people who became known as “Barbary Pirates.” And in 1804, the Philadelphia, a US Navy ship ran aground and was quickly surrounded by the pirates. 307 Americans were taken hostage.
Now President Jefferson was trying to negotiate return of the prisoners; however William Eaton, American Consul to Tunis decided to take a different course of action.
Eaton appointed himself General of a make-shift army. And accompanied by 8 US Marines, Eaton set out for Tripoli. Along the way he gathered nearly 1000 Greek, Arab and European mercenaries.
Eaton fought the United State’s first battle on foreign soil, the Battle of Derne, overthrowing Tripoli’s leader, thus ending the custom of paying bribe money to protect American merchant ships from the pillage of Barbary pirates.
Many believe his triumph resulted in the American flag being flown over foreign soil for the first time.