Beaver Wars and the Relationship between Europeans and American Indians

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The Beaver Wars and the European/American Indian Relationship

Introduction Genocide is not a feature of warfare or rule that can be unilaterally blamed on European nations. It was a natural outgrowth of a people's desire to devastate another group of people for some purpose such as to steal land or gain an economic advantage. The Europeans who sailed to North America were skilled in this particular form of warfare having practiced it on one another for centuries, but they did not have to introduce it to the aboriginal tribes they found there. When the Dutch established a colony at Manhattan, they discovered a group of people who were both warriors and farmers called the Mohawk. This tribe fought in a particular manner that was meant to bring terror to their foes much as Hitler with his blitzkrieg or the United States with its "shock and awe" both of which would come centuries later (Axelrod 2011, 64). During a series of wars termed "Beaver Wars", these Mohawks, along with their partner tribes, waged a genocidal warfare that destroyed or dispersed those they were warring against. The Iroquois, traditional enemies of the Algonquian Federation who were allied with the French, sought to expand their fur hunting territory as a consequence of English/Dutch pressure to produce more fur, and the promise of aid in their fight against enemy tribes.

History Five tribes made up the confederation called the Iroquois. The Mohawk, Seneca, Onondaga, Oneida and Cayuga tribes
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