During the American War of Independence in the late 18th century, the islands became a target for US naval forces. Under the command of Commodore Esek Hopkins; US Marines, the US Navy occupied Nassau in 1776, before being evacuated a few days later. In 1782 a Spanish fleet appeared off the coast of Nassau, and the city surrendered without a fight. Spain returned possession of The Bahamas to Great Britain the following year, under the terms of the Treaty of Paris. Before the news was received however, the islands were recaptured by a small British force led by Andrew Deveaux.
During proprietary rule, The Bahamas became a haven for pirates, including Blackbeard (circa 1680–1718). To put an end to the 'Pirates' republic' and restore orderly government, Great Britain made The Bahamas a crown colony in 1718 under the royal governorship of Woodes Rogers. After a difficult struggle, he succeeded in suppressing piracy. In 1720, the Spanish attacked Nassau during the War of the Quadruple Alliance. In 1729, a local assembly was established giving a degree of self-governance for the English settlers. The reforms had been planned by the previous Governor George Phenney and authorised in July 1728.More Info
Widely known simply as "Boris", Johnson has attracted a variety of nicknames, including "BoJo", a portmanteau of his forename and surname. Biographer Sonia Purnell described his public persona as "brand Boris", noting that he developed it while at the University of Oxford. Max Hastings referred to this public image as a "façade resembling that of P. G. Wodehouse's Gussie Fink-Nottle, allied to wit, charm, brilliance and startling flashes of instability", while political scientist Andrew Crines stated that Johnson displayed "the character of a likable and trustworthy individual with strong intellectual capital". Private Eye editor Ian Hislop has defined him as "Beano Boris" due to his perceived comical nature, saying: "He's our Berlusconi ... He's the only feel-good politician we have, everyone else is too busy being responsible." To the journalist Dave Hill, Johnson was "a unique figure in British politics, an unprecedented blend of comedian, conman, faux subversive showman and populist media confection".More Info
According to Purnell, "[Johnson] is blessed with immense charisma, wit, sex appeal and celebrity gold dust; he is also recognised and loved by millions—although perhaps less so by many who have had to work closely with him (let alone depend on him). Resourceful, cunning and strategic, he can pull off serious political coups when the greater good happens to coincide with his personal advantage but these aspirations are rarely backed up by concrete achievements, or even detailed plans." Furthermore, Purnell said that Johnson was a "highly evasive figure" when it came to his personal life, who remained detached from others and who had very few if any intimate friends. Among friends and family, Johnson is known as "Al" (short for his forename Alexander), rather than his middle name "Boris".Gimson stated that Johnson "has very bad manners. He tends to be late, does not care about being late, and dresses without much care". Highly ambitious and very competitive, Johnson was, Gimson wrote, born "to wage a ceaseless struggle for supremacy". He would be particularly angered with those he thought insulted aspects of his personal life; for instance, when an article in The Telegraph upset Johnson, he emailed commissioning editor Sam Leith with the simple message "Fuck off and die." Thus, according to Purnell, Johnson hides his ruthlessness "using bumbling, self-deprecation or humour", and was a fan of "laddish banter and crude sexual references".More Info
Writing for Prospect, Philip Collins suggested that Johnson and other Brexiteers in the Conservative Party were "British Gaullists" who were "drawing on a conception of the nation in which the dormant spirit of liberty is being reborn." He suggested that this was a form of nationalism, albeit not of the "chauvinistic" variety. In Politico, Michael Hirsch compared Johnson to Trump, suggesting that both were advocates of a "New Nationalism". Johnson responded that he is "not a nationalist if by that you mean I'm a xenophobe or someone who deprecates other countries and cultures".More Info
In 1670, King Charles II granted the islands to the Lords Proprietors of the Carolinas in North America. They rented the islands from the king with rights of trading, tax, appointing governors, and administering the country from their base on New Providence. Piracy and attacks from hostile foreign powers were a constant threat. In 1684, Spanish corsair Juan de Alcon raided the capital Charles Town (later renamed Nassau), and in 1703, a joint Franco-Spanish expedition briefly occupied Nassau during the War of the Spanish Succession.More Info
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