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The increasing British restrictions on trade may be viewed as a side effect of the weakness of the American national government. Seeing that the Second Continental Congress was unable to control commerce even within the united States, Britain doubted that Congress would be able to muster any challenge to British trade policies. The restrictions on trade in the British Isles and the West Indies represented a blatant show of disrespect to the American government. Unable to control finance within the US and too weak to command the respect of foreign powers, the national government under the Articles of Confederation showed its first signs of crumbling almost immediately.

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