The American path to World War I is a long one, mired with political, economic and social complexities. At the star of the war the vast majority of Americans supported neutrality, not wanting to participate in what seemed a purely European war. As the war progressed the American administration adopted a policy of military neutrality but economic alliance with Great Britain. In response Germany started attacking shipping lines at sea, hoping to cut off Britain's supply lines. In the US, public opinion started shifting towards aiding Britain because of the American citizens that lost their lives in the German U-Boat campaign, and because British anti-German propaganda started to work. By the beginning of 1917 the political and social climate in the United States was such that it allowed President Woodrow Wilson to declare war against Germany.