Evaluate Napoleon's Foreign Policy

Napoleon's foreign policy was simply a desire for glory while staying out of war with Britain and Russia.  Unlike his uncle, Napoleon was concerned with the "social question" of France and the plight of the working people.  His economic internal affairs tended to be more successful than his military endeavors.  Like many leaders before him, Napoleon had to give France glory to gain his legitimacy.  Napoleon did not want to meet his uncle's fate in a war with a major power of Europe; he steered clear of conflict with Britain and Russia.

Napoleon's military adventures were unsuccessful in both obtaining glory and winning any sort of victory.  Napoleon wanted to create a satellite government in Mexico and set up a system in Mexico for French exports.  Defying the Monroe Doctrine, he attacked Mexican Radical Republicans and was soon kicked out by Americans and the Mexican peasants.  Not only had Napoleon failed to gain any sort of satellite government but he had lost to a bunch of Mexican peasants.  He had managed to stay out of war with a European power, but lost huge glory.  Needless to say this Mexican adventure was unsuccessful.

The Luxembourg Crisis and Napoleon's cockiness lost glory for France while losing a war that the French should not have even been involved in.  Napoleon demanded the city of Luxembourg from Bismarck after the Prussian defeat of Austria.  Bismarck became enraged, as did the rest of the Germans.  Napoleon attacked Germany, to keep France's glory as the supposed greatest country in the world.  Bismarck and the German states then proceeded to overtake France, who soon overthrew their own government.  Losing to Russia or Britain would have been bad enough; but losing to a bunch of German states filled with German savages was a huge loss of glory.

Despite Napoleon's military loses he managed to give France glory in other areas.  Napoleon obtained permission from Egypt to build the Suez Canal.  Ferdinand de Lesseps and the creation of the eighth wonder of the world gave France huge glory.  It created an expanse of trade, increased revenue and market income for the French.  This interested the British greatly, and kept the French and British on friendly terms.  When the Russians defeated the Turks in the Crimean war the Holy sites were now under Russian control.  The Suez Canal became threatened by Russian attack, which further angered the French.  Napoleon managed to unite the British and French to push the Russians out of the Holy sites, regaining glory for France.  This defeat of Russia and especially the uniting of Britain and France gave France huge glory.

Napoleon's foreign policy of gaining glory while maintaining peace with the major European powers was unsuccessful.  He managed to obtain glory for France with the Suez Canal and the uniting of the British and French.  Though he created this glory, he also lost huge glory by getting kicked out of Mexico by a bunch of peasants.  Napoleon's obtaining of glory proved futile for in the end France lost to Bismarck.  Obtaining glory is nice, but without a solid government to keep it under its pretty pointless.

-Beau Johnson, Brad Parks, Michell Vogel, Ian Cambell, Joe Griffith