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U.S Expansionism Essay

1307 words - 6 pages

Bat Agaoglu
IR 376
Professor Kinzer
Paper #1
1) I tell you what I am going to say-
The 1890s saw an expansion on US imperialism of American territory, as a result of economic, political, and cultural factors with justifications on acquiring more land, power, and resources. Many Americans believed U.S had to expand to increase population, wealth, and industrial production which demanded more resources. So, therefore, US took control of other territories such as Hawaii, Cuba, and Panama to impose its own beliefs of government and culture on the people. The United States encouraged these territories to become independent from other nations so that they would be more ...view middle of the document...

There merely was not enough land to consume all their resources. Mills were producing far more than the country can assess and foreign markets for export were desperately needed to sell off the excess. Expansionists came across a Hawaiian-island. Since early 19th century, America gradually came to regard Hawaiian Islands as an extension of the Pacific Coast. Investors gathered to this new “island paradise” to market their products, consisting mostly of wheat, a foreign grain to the natives. When these investors demanded statehood in order to reduce tariffs on the produce that they had invested in on Hawaii, the current president, Cleveland, flatly denied them on the basis that it was immoral. Hawaii was not the only non-American island in which the rich in-vested. Much money was poured into the sugar cane and exotic fruits of Cuba as well. At this time, a startling development arose in Cuba. The natives had decided to rebel against the highly oppressive Spanish government. Wealthy news editors, including William Randolph Hearst and Joseph Pulitzer, helped incite the public into a war frenzy by publishing somewhat untruthful stories about the atrocities the Spanish inflicted upon the native Cubans. In an effort to gain a wider following, Hearst sent the budding young artist Frederick Remington to Cuba to draw pictures of the atrocities the papers had described. Remington wrote that he found no evidence of any such atrocities, but at Hearst’s insistence, he drew them anyway. With public opinions highly in favor of rescuing the Cubans, the government began to consider the idea of intervention. The deciding factor came when the rebels, realizing that their greatest potential savior was in nearby America, began burning the sugar-cane fields in which so many Americans had invested. Outraged businessmen stormed congress and demanded that it intervene. A conscientious Cleveland said no, ending his presidential career and any hope for reelection. As tensions began to rise in the US, congress stationed the warship ‘Maine’ off the Cuban coast for the protection of the American population residing there. When the ship exploded the newspapers immediately blamed Spain, despite proof that it was accidental combustion in one of the ship’s powder rooms. The government could no longer ignore the American people. The new president, McKinley, asked congress to declare war on Cuba and, with the wealthy investors goading them on, congress quickly responded. When it came time to test Spain’s navy there were doubts; however, one of the most important reasons for bringing America out of its isolationism was the sobering reality that England had drastically improved its navy. The race to keep up had revitalized the American fighting spirit, and our navy, though small, was new and included the latest nautical innovations. Thus, when it came time to battle the much-decayed Spanish fleet stationed in the Philippines, America had a decided advantage. The Spanish fleet was...

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