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|The Southern hope for victory was inexorably tied to it's continued viability as a military power. In other words all it really needed to do was continue to exist and eventually through either political or diplomatic victories their independence would be assured. The thought of a purely military solution to the question was a pipe dream at best. Even the capture of Washington would not necessarily have guaranteed an overall victory for the South. While no doubt it would have dealt a major blow to Lincoln's prestige as well as to northern morale, it would have done nothing to address the massive disparity in resources-men, manufacturing, railroad network, naval power,diplomacy-that was the North's greatest advantage. If the Confederacy was to adopt the strategy of invasion as a means of victory, it would be playing into the North's hands. Imagine the galvanizing effect that would result from sustained operations in Northern territory by Southern forces, not to mention the numbers of troops it would have required to occupy the many areas of manufacturing and population in order to subdue a truly unified and indignant U.S.