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Support, Modify, or Refute: The Monroe Doctrine ushered in a new era of US foreign policy The Monroe Doctrine was established in the early 19th century written by, of course, James Monroe. This document ushered in a new era of US foreign policy by stepping their foot down and showing the rest of the world how powerful they could be. This was when the US was slowly figuring out the power they could hold. This document stated that the US will not permit the following: Interfering with affairs in the Western Hemisphere, attempts to create new colonies in the Western Hemisphere, and the overthrowing of new colonies. These were said to be, “Dangerous to our peace and safety.” These statements clearly support how the US wanted to flex their muscles and flaunt independence. Foreign policy before the Monroe Doctrine was put into place is almost a polar opposite of foreign policy after the doctrine was put into place. Before the Monroe Doctrine, the US showed multiple examples of neutrality.

For instance, on April 22nd, 1793, George Washington issued a proclamation of neutrality, which in turn declared the nation neutral in the conflict between France and Great Britain. After the Monroe Doctrine was put into place, Macon’s Bill No. 2 (passed by Madison) went into effect, which was an opposite extreme of Washington’s proclamation of neutrality. With Macon’s Bill, the US is now agreeing to trade with everyone (even France), except for Great Britain (The bill was originally passed to motivate both France and Britain to stop seizing American Vessels). This obviously causes copious amounts of tension between countries, and is yet again, a sign of strength and power coming from the US.

Napoleon saw Macon’s Bill No. 2 as a great chance for him to move along his, “Continental Plan.” Now that Britain was unable to trade, this meant they were weak as a whole, but mainly their economy was in turmoil. Macon’s Bill No. 2 was the main cause of The War of 1812. This was a war between the US and Great Britain and Ireland (British ally). The war was basically a conflict because neither country could get over their ego’s, which is yet again, another example of how the US showed great strength (and a little stubbornness) in this period of time.


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