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APUSH - US Imperialism

Categories: Imperialism
economic reasons for imperialism
more raw materials/ natural resources were needed to continue to make finished goods; the US was overproducing goods and they needed “new markets” to sell their products to

political/military reasons for imperialism
several European nations had amassed large empires around the globe by the early 1900’s and the US wanted to compete in the global market (Alfred T. Mahan= wrote a book, The Influence of Sea Power Upon History; he stated that every great nation needs a powerful navy, a strong navy would be able to defend US international shipping/ trading, as a result the US would need to acquire strategic locations/ bases to protect their interests)

social reasons for imperialism
belief in American superiority/ Social Darwinism; idea that stronger nations will naturally dominate and control weaker nation; the US had a “responsibility” to spread its culture to lesser developed nations (ie.

“White Man’s Burden)

Annexation of Hawaii
-Hawaii’s Importance= strategic geographic location in Pacific Ocean; American business controlled the sugar industry there; established sugar cane plantations; US could build a military base there-Pearl Harbor
-Group of white planters (with help from US Marines) led by Sanford B.

Dole overthrow Queen Liliuokalani in 1893
Dole asks the US gov’t to annex Hawaii and becomes the first President of the Republic of Hawaii while they wait for an answer (1894-1898)
-Official Annexation in 1898=US was hesitant at first and held off on annexation until war with Spain broke out; in 1898, the US gov’t approves the annexation and becomes an official territory of the US

Causes of the Spanish-American War-
Cuban Workers vs. Spanish Gov’t
Cuban sugar workers begin to revolt against the Spanish gov’t; they are severely suppressed by Spanish gov’t; 100,000 killed in concentration camps; US sympathetic to workers plight; their hardships are detailed in American newspaper around the country; US had millions ($$$) invested in Cuban business

Causes of the Spanish-American War-
De Lome Letter
a Spanish diplomat (Dupuy de Lome) living in the US has a letter stolen and published in the newspapers; in the letter, de Lome criticizes Pres. McKinley and calls him “weak, stupid, and corrupt”; yellow journalists publish the letter and call it an “insult to US”

Causes of the Spanish-American War-
Yellow Journalism
-misrepresentation/exaggeration of stories in order to sway public opinion and boost sales
-William Randolph Hearst (NY Journal) and Joseph Pulitzer (NY World) heightened the public’s dislike of the Spanish gov’t through their newspapers

Teller Amendment
promised to annex Cuba after the island was free of the Spanish

US Strategy for Fighting in the Spanish-American War
attack Spanish not in Cuba first, but in the Philippines; US navy completely destroys Spanish fleet in Manila; blockade Cuba and attack by sea and on land; US wins decisive Battle of San Juan Hill: Teddy Roosevelt leads the ‘Rough Riders’, a voluntary cavalry regiment in Cuba and becomes a war hero; Spain surrenders

Treaty of Paris(1898)
ends the Spanish-American war; US gets Guam and Puerto Rico; US buys Philippines for $20 million; Cuba is given independence(sort of)

Platt Amendment
amendment added to Cuba’s constitution by the US; Cuba becomes a protectorate of the US (an autonomous territory that is protected diplomatically/militarily by a stronger state); US could intervene at any time in Cuba to “maintain order; US would buy land to create a naval base: Guantanamo Bay; Cuba couldn’t sign treaties with other nations without US approval

Conflict in the Philippines(1899-1902)
the US would militarily occupy Philippines for several years; many Filipinos felt that the new American rule was just as oppressive as the Spanish; Filipino nationalists led by Emilio Aguinaldo led a series of violent revolts against the American military; 5,000 Americans and 200,000 Filipinos were killed; many were shocked at the cruelty of the US soldiers vs. the Filipino population; violence gradually reduced as the US allowed the Filipinos more self-government; built schools and hospitals to ease tension; the US would “supervise the Philippines until after WWII (1946)

Anti-Imperialist League
some Americans rejected the pro-imperialist argument; leading Anti-Imperialists- William Jennings Bryan and Mark Twain; argued that imperialism violated basic American principles–how could the US pass laws governing colonial peoples who are not represented?; the Treaty of Paris was ratified by only one vote in the senate

Big Stick Policy/Roosevelt Corollary
-Roosevelt Corollary= an “addition” to the Monroe Doctrine (1823) that was made in 1905; Pres. Teddy Roosevelt pushed the idea of “preventive intervention”
-Big Stick Policy=US will intervene in Latin American whenever US interests are “threatened” (and to keep Europe out of the situation); US becomes an international “police power”

Dollar Diplomacy
policy under Pres. Taft; American businesses would invest in foreign countries to create “order and stability”; mostly affected Latin America; economic rather than military action

Open Door Policy
after getting Philippines, US wanted to exercise more influence in Asia; opened access to China’s ports for the United States; European nations (and Japan) had been dividing China up into “spheres of influence”–area of China in which one country would hold economic dominance; US was annoyed that they were being left out of the Chinese market; Sec. of State John Hay officially announces the Open Door Policy: all foreign nations should respect Chinese rights and let other countries bid fairly on commercial contracts; main idea- wasn’t closely followed by other countries but did lead to an increase in trade between the US and China

Panama Canal
Panama “grants” the US land to build a canal (after the US had helped Panamanian rebels overthrow Columbian rule); France had failed to build one there in the 1880s; makes it easier for the US ships/navy to access new territories in the Pacific Ocean; construction of the canal was plagued by disease (malaria); used “lock system” instead of building a sea-level canal; was finished in 1914 and over 25,000 died in the process; the US controlled the canal until 1999, when it was handed over to Panama

Great White Fleet
why? to show American naval strength to the world (particularly Japan and China); was the popular nickname for the US Navy battle fleet that completed a circumnavigation of the globe from December 1907-February 1909 by order of Pres. Teddy Roosevelt; 16 battleships total; Roosevelt sought to demonstrate growing American military power capability

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