In a speech to Congress in 1823, President James Monroe issued a new policy concerning the threat of European intervention to inhibit American sovereignty. This came to be known as the Monroe Doctrine, which became the cornerstone of U.S. relations with Latin America. It states that the United States would stay out of European affairs. It also warns the European powers that any effort to extend European influence into the Western Hemisphere would be regarded as a threat to the U.S and that the New World was not open to further colonization. However, colonies that existed would be allowed to remain colonies
In the 1840s, a widespread belief arose throughout the U.S. that America was destined to expand from coast to coast. Some came to believe that it was not only the right, but the duty of the United States to expand to the Pacific coast. This belief came to be known as Manifest Destiny. Manifest Destiny came to be associated with the Monroe Doctrine because it prevented a European nation from gaining influence in the Americas. However, Mexico owned most of western North America and many Americans felt that it stood in the way of Manifest Destiny.
Texas was part of Mexico, but it came to be mostly made up of Americans. These Americans felt no loyalty to Mexico and wanted to join the United States. The Texans rebelled and won their independence in 1836. They were admitted into the Union in 1845. The annexation of Texas by the U.S. angered the Mexicans, who had never really accepted the independence of Texas.
The Mexicans claimed that the southern border of Texas was the Nueces River, while the Americans maintained that it was the Rio Grande, which was some 200 miles to the south. The land... [continues]
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