The Monroe Doctrine... a Positive

Topics: United States, Dominican Republic, Spanish language Pages: 8 (3129 words) Published: April 30, 2012
The U.S benefitted Latin America through the implementation of the Monroe Doctrine, which helped prevented further European colonization. Independence and sovereignty were in the U.S’s intentions for involvement in Latin America, while many European governments saw benefits in overturning independence and thereby acquiring resources and global power. This paper will use examples of European colonialism in, Africa, Mexico, and the Dominican Republic, to support my claim. Both the U.S and Europe had very different intentions for getting involved in Latin America and this influenced their relations and the overall status of Latin America. In the end, the United States helped prevent European re-colonization in Latin America through the Monroe Doctrine, even if the United States began aggressively extending its own formal and informal empire by the end of the nineteenth century. President James Monroe first presented the Monroe Doctrine in two parts in 1823. The first part was an anti colonial message to the Europeans, and the second was a promise of solidarity between the U.S and Latin America. “The Monroe doctrine’s transformation over time from a foreign policy principle into a national ideology was caused by the rise in U.S power, and American Expansionism. This transformed the Monroe Doctrine from an original isolationist policy, which was opposed to intervention in the Americans, to being amended with corollaries, which authorized the U.S to engage in internal affairs of Latin American countries,” (Dent 7). Before 1823, the U.S was still trying to become economically and politically stable after Independence. It was not until 1823 that President James Monroe came up with the Monroe Doctrine in order to send an anti colonial message to Europeans in a hope to keep them from expanding into the Western Hemisphere. Monroe stated, "The American continents, by the free and independent condition which they have assumed and maintain, are henceforth not to be considered as subjects for future colonization by any European powers," (Perkins 43). However, it took until 1895 before the Monroe Doctrine held any real precedence. At the time the Monroe Doctrine came into existence the U.S had no power to enforce it, with their weak military, and low economic status. But the Venezuela Crisis of 1895 transformed the Monroe Doctrine from a simple piece of legislator into a Global policy. The Venezuela Crisis led the British to “tacitly concede the U.S. definition of the Monroe Doctrine and its hegemony in the hemisphere.” [1] The Venezuela Crisis was a land dispute between Venezuela and the United Kingdom and the U.S had to act as an arbitrator. After the settlement, Roosevelt decided to amend the Monroe Doctrine to include the Roosevelt Corollary in 1904. It stated the U.S had the right to intervene in Latin America internal affairs when there was “flagrant and chronic wrongdoing by a Latin American Nation.” [2] “The Monroe doctrine acted as a rationalization for U.S intervention and dollar diplomacy in dealing with Latin America. The original message of the Monroe doctrine did emphasize keeping Europe out of the Western Hemisphere, but it did not mention the U.S’s own intentions or limitations in access to Latin America. Between 1895 and 1930 the United States assumed the role of hemispheric policeman, imposing its control over Central America and the Caribbean in the name of peace, democracy, stability, and economic protection,” (Dent 7).

Europe had several incentives for getting involved in Latin America, the first being a need for another economic market. “One of the major ways a colony can strengthen a nation is by providing it with another economic market. As a result of Industrialization, production was too high for consumer demand in Europe. Jules Ferry wrote an appeal to the French, urging colonization. In his appeal he wrote, "The European consumer-goods market is saturated: unless we declare modern society bankrupt and...
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