President Theodore Roosevelt had an active foreign policy. President Roosevelt wanted to expand American influence and make the United States a world power. He also wanted to spread American ideals and ways of living around the world. The phrase “speak softly and carry a big stick” summarizes President Roosevelt’s foreign...
President Theodore Roosevelt had an active foreign policy. President Roosevelt wanted to expand American influence and make the United States a world power. He also wanted to spread American ideals and ways of living around the world. The phrase “speak softly and carry a big stick” summarizes President Roosevelt’s foreign policy very well.
The United States wanted to build a canal in Central America to shorten the distance of shipping products between the Atlantic and the Pacific Oceans. The United States wanted to build this canal through Colombia, but Colombia refused our offer. President Roosevelt then supported a revolution in Panama, which declared its independence from Colombia. The American navy blocked Colombia from ending the revolution, and the United States quickly recognized Panama as an independent country. The United States quickly signed a deal with Panama to build the canal, and the Panama Canal was eventually built.
The United States did not want European countries to interfere in the affairs of countries in the Americas. As a result, he issued the Roosevelt Corollary to the Monroe Doctrine. This policy told European countries that the United States would handle any issues that they had with countries in Central America or South America. For example, the United States intervened in the Dominican Republic to help collect taxes so the Dominican Republic could pay its debts to Europe.
President Roosevelt wanted to show the world how powerful the United States was. He sent the American navy, called the Great White Fleet, around the world to showcase America’s power.
President Roosevelt also helped bring an end to a war between Japan and Russia. He helped negotiate an end to this conflict. For his efforts, he received the Nobel Peace Prize.
President Wilson believed in a more idealistic foreign policy based on moral principles. President Wilson hoped to develop friendly relations with the countries of Latin America. He also wanted these countries to have democratic governments. Sometimes his actions did not reflect his beliefs; he sent American troops into Haiti and the Dominican Republic. Even with American troops in these countries, democratic governments were not established there.
When World War I began, the United States remained neutral. President Wilson hoped the country could stay out of the war, but our extensive trade with the countries involved in World War I made this difficult. When the United States eventually joined World War I on the side of the Allies, Wilson stated that this war would be a "war to end all wars" and that the American involvement would make the world safe for democratic governments. Neither of these principles proved to be true after the war ended.
When the peace treaty was being negotiated, President Wilson voiced his opposition. President Wilson wanted an easier treaty on the defeated Central Powers. His counterparts in the other Allied countries did not agree with this approach. Wilson did get the creation of the League of Nations as a result of the peace treaty. This organization was designed to prevent future conflicts. However, the United States never joined the League of Nations, and the League of Nations ultimately failed in its goal of keeping world peace. Overall, the peace treaty was a harsh one on the defeated Central Powers.