Imperialism And The Us In 1900 Essay

, Research Paper

Imperialism is the pursuit of colonial empires. Many countries took part in this, but none quite like the United States. The motivation that the United States had to get involved in such an enormous task was first shown in Samoa in 1889. After that important part of United States history, there were many more events that occurred in the eyes of United States imperialism. There were many positive aspects concerning America s intervening with other countries affairs. These proved to shape the society of not only the U.S., but as well as the other countries which were involved.

The reasoning behind the United States involvement was somewhat simple. Just as other countries, such as Great Britain, that were taking part in imperialism, the U.S. acted because of economic power as well as the reputation that they held among other countries. It seemed obvious that it was easier for an industrial worker to be aided by a machine. The number of products was significantly greater than before. In the mean time, while looking for new suppliers as well as new consumers (other countries), the U.S worried that there would be competition. America, just as many other industrialized nations, set out on a mission to colonize with the hopes of dominating the industrial world.

Some felt that the U.S. needed to spread the Christian community and political system to other parts of the world. Although, others, such as Alfred Thayer Mahan, thought that the regions conquered overseas would make America more powerful and give them more steamship fueling stations and naval bases. This reason, rather than cultural aspects, led to the face-off between America, Great Britain, and Germany in Samoa in 1889. The U.S. gained control over Eastern Samoa, while Germany had conquered Western Samoa.

The United States, throughout the next 18 years, would embark on many journeys to gain power and wealth, first in Cuba. Here, the U.S. saw the opportunity to act when finding out that the Cubans had unsuccessfully attempted to revolt against Spain. The Cubans saw the threats towards America by Spain, so they thought that the U.S. should aid them in their rebellion. After effectively gaining independence from Spain with the help of the United States, Cuba then became a step up on the stairs of economical power for the U.S.

The United States were interested in Hawaii. It was located right along the trading route to China and had soil that was enriched by lava- perfect for growing crops. Through difficult times, America persevered and annexed Hawaii in 1898. Next, the Philippine Islands had been fighting against Spain for independence for 2 years. It proved that it would be a lot harder for the Philippines than it was for Cuba. With the help of the U.S. in the Spanish-American War, Filipinos were free from Spain, but not from annexation from America. Now instead of fighting with the United States, the Philippines were fighting against them. By 1902, U.S. forces had stopped the rebellion and the Filipinos were on their way -slowly- to gaining independence.

For an extremely long time, China s rulers debated and struggled with how they should balance the American and European interests in trade. Soon, Germany, Great Britain, France, and Russia all wanted the Chinese government to separate the country into different spheres of influence. The United States was worried that this would separate them from the trade in China. So the idea of an Open Door Policy gave equal trade and advantages to different countries with China.

During the Russo-Japanese War, the U.S. noticed that if Russia won, it could cut off all trade between America and Manchuria, and if Japan won, it could grow extremely powerful and economically strong. Theodore Roosevelt (president at the time) realized that something had to be done. He gathered two representatives from both countries to resolve the war. Neither side got what they wanted but it did end the war, declaring peace between the two countries.

After Panama rebelled against Colombia, it was considered an independent nation. The United States noticed that this could potentially be a good thing. In wanting the canal in mind, America befriended Panama. After various treaties the United States was given a huge part of the canal zone. They then would later gain control over the entire thing only to leave Panama behind. Lastly, America intervened in Mexico in 1914. After U.S sailors had gone to a Mexican port for supplies, they were arrested. The U.S. ambassador, Henry Wilson pursued this matter and along with an admiral, demanded an apology from Mexico. Not only that but they wanted at a Mexican ceremony to raise an American flag and salute it with twenty-one gunshots. The apology was given, but the ceremony never took place.

The United States did many positive things during this time of imperialism. These good things definitely impacted our economical power and political standing. First, in annexing Hawaii and the Philippines, America was able to closely trade with China and have many more ports for exports and imports. Along with the positive things in terms of trading, the Open Door Policy of China helped the United States. It assured that the U.S. would be able to trade with China and that they would not be pushed out of the economical world. In the Russo-Japanese War, Roosevelt definitely did the right thing for America. He assured that the U.S. would be safe as well as making it easier to trade and do business with other countries. Lastly, in gaining control over the Panama Canal, the United States controlled trade on a higher level. They made sure that the U.S. was the center of business and that, economically, we were on top.

I feel that the United States certainly helped our economy. I think that the efforts of our country were undoubtedly positive towards our financial stature and worldly standing. Even though sometimes the United States had to take control over people s homes and land, the U.S. was doing it for the good and survival of its country. The government had a goal and they stuck to it. The United States of America was extremely successful with imperialism.


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