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Defeat of the Spanish Armada

Defeat of the Spanish Armada
Defeat of the Spanish Armada by Philippe-Jacques de Loutherbourg

"Truly," said (Oliver) Cromwell, "your great enemy is the Spaniard . . . through that enmity that is in him against all that is of God that is in you."

That enmity came from the origin of the Catholic religion in the primordial revolt against God, embodied by the serpent in the Garden of Eden. "I will put an enmity between thy seed and her seed," Cromwell said, citing God's curse on the serpent and the enmity He would fix between the Children of Darkness and the Children of Light.

Cromwell's approach to world politics would resonate more than three hundred years later and three thousand miles away, when on March 8, 1983, U.S. president Ronald Reagan addressed the annual convention of the National Association of Evangelicals in Orlando, Florida. The Soviet Union, he said, is "the focus of evil in the modern world." And America was engaged in a test of faith against an adversary that had set itself against God.

Since the enmity between the Free World and the Empire of Evil was existential—the battle between the Children of Light and the Children of Darkness—it was also eternal, just like Cromwell's call for unrelenting war with Spain. One cannot make a covenant with the Father of Lies.
-- God and Gold by Walter Russell Mead

The Spanish Armada sailed against England in 1588 under the command of the Duke of Medina Sidonia with the intention of invading and conquering England.

The invasion fleeet was set in motion by the death of Queen Mary I of England 30 years earlier. King Philip II of Spain, her husband, had been king consort of England until  her death. He took exception to the policies pursued by her successor, Elizabeth I.

King Philip II was supported by Pope Sixtus V, who treated the invasion as a crusade.

The Armada set out with 22 warships of the Spanish Royal Navy and 108 converted merchant vessels, with the intention of sailing through the English Channel to anchor off the coast of Flanders, where the Duke of Parma's army of tercios would stand ready for an invasion of the south-east of England.

The Armada achieved its first goal and anchored outside Gravelines, at the coastal border area between France and the Spanish Netherlands. While awaiting communications from Parma's army, it was driven from its anchorage by an English fire ship attack, and in the ensuing battle at Gravelines the Spanish were forced to abandon their rendezvous with Parma's army.

The Armada managed to regroup and withdraw north, with the English fleet harrying it for some distance up the east coast of England. A return voyage to Spain was plotted, and the fleet sailed into the Atlantic, past Ireland.

Severe storms disrupted the fleet's course and more than 24 vessels were wrecked on the north and western coasts of Ireland, with the survivors having to seek refuge in Scotland. Of the fleet's initial complement, about 50 vessels failed to make it back to Spain.

The expedition was the largest engagement of the undeclared Anglo–Spanish War (1585–1604).

God and Gold
God and Gold

Britain, America, and the Making of the Modern World
by Walter Russell Mead 

This book explores how very different the maritime-based British Empire, upon which the sun never set, was from previous land-based empires . Following in the wake of the Dutch, the British established a new world order that lasted the better part of three centuries, only to be passed along to the United States and its Trident submarines.




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