T.R.’s Virtuoso Performance
Henry J. Hendrix II
“The land divided, the world united”, the official motto of the Panama Canal, and it did exactly that. The Panama Canal connects the Pacific Ocean to the Gulf. However it is much more than just a canal, the Panama Canal is a part of history for every country that relates to it. The article “T.R.’s Virtuoso Performance” by “Henry J. Hendricks II” argues that Teddy Roosevelt had an interesting view on his political methods, particularly when dealing with Latin American countries.
T.R.’s political views are very interesting. Hendricks writes that “speaking softly but wielding a big stick Theodore Roosevelt orchestrated the independence of Panama and gained us right to build the canal.”¹. He does this many times throughout his time in office, as well as when he was the assistant secretary of the Navy. For example as when Cuba did not want to comply with his treaty, the Venezuelan crisis when Great Britain Italy and Germany wanted to embargo Venezuela, the changes that he made to the American foreign policy, and when he almost sent the U.S. into war with Spain when he was Assistant Secretary of the Navy.
When Cuba did not agree with the American treaty which would allow America to use the land between the Gulf and the Pacific Ocean as canal Theodore then decided that he was going to join the revolutionaries in their battle against the Cubans. This way he could accomplish what he set out for without giving up anything. He was gentle at first, but if you disagreed with him he became a force to be reckoned with.
Another instance of this event can be seen when America had to stop the embargoing of Great Britain Italy and Germany on Venezuela. Although Theodore did not like the idea of European force meddling with Central America at first he was smart and rational. This led him to excuse the Monroe Doctrine, and work out a plan so that Venezuela could pay off its debts over...
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