Why might Cubans have resented the Platt Amendment?
The Platt Amendment was attached to an act of Congress in 1901. It basically established Cuba as a protectorate of the United States. It forbade Cuba from going into debt and entering into treaties that the United States opposed, and it asserted the right of the United States to intervene in Cuban affairs under certain vaguely defined conditions. Many Cubans resented the Platt Amendment because they hoped that the Spanish-American war, which had its roots in their struggle for independence from Spain, would result in Cuba's becoming a fully sovereign nation. In fact, the United States had stipulated in the so-called Teller Amendment at the beginning of the war that they had no desire to annex Cuba. The Platt Amendment sent a clear message that the United States regarded Cuba as essentially a client state, independent only insofar as its interests were the same as those of its larger neighbor. Many Cubans did in fact resent the Amendment, which was rejected by the Cuban government when it was first proposed. In the wake of the war and the Platt Amendment, as one historian has said, "thousands of impoverished [Cuban] veterans wandered aimlessly about, muttering among themselves, 'What have we gained by this war?'"