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There were two periods in which the United States pursued policies of non-intervention in the affairs of neighbouring states. The first was the years immediately following the American War of Independence, which ended with the Treaty of Paris in 1783.

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INTRODUCTION There were two periods in which the United States pursued policies of non-intervention in the affairs of neighbouring states. The first was the years immediately following the American War of Independence, which ended with the Treaty of Paris in 1783. The second period immediately followed the "Great Depression" which saw the collapse of the American economy, the recovery from which started in 1933. It should be noted that both periods occurred at times when the economy of the United States was weak and periods of direct and indirect intervention followed on each occasion when the United States prospered. The first major policy statement was the Manifest Destiny (1801) in which the expansionist ambitions were outlined. This was followed by the Monroe Document of 1823, which sought to discourage European intervention in the affairs of the countries of the region, especially as they related The Declaration of Independence from their European masters, by Latin America countries. The Corollary to the Monroe Doctrine as stated by Theodore Roosevelt in 1904, first mentioned the possibility of American intervention to resolve "chronic wrong-doing in the western hemisphere" which he claimed may force "the United States to the exercise of an international police power". The historical context of these policies, as well as the economic conditions both in the United States and worldwide, must be examined, in order to understand the concerns which were responsible for the development of these policies and, the perception by American leaders, that it was possible to successfully pursue a strategy of intervention at times to further the interests of the United States. United States Government Policies The Manifest Destiny The expansionist policy of President Jefferson, which as stated before, was necessary for the development of his country, was however not limited only to the North American continent, but also to other parts of the Americas and the Caribbean. In 1801, he outlined the "Manifest Destiny" when he said, "... ...read more.


This however changed in 1898. When the United States engineered the War of Independence in 1895 with the introduction of the Wilson tariff on imported sugar, it nevertheless stayed out of the war, until provided with an excuse that a battleship, the USS Marine, blew up in Havana Harbour and the Spanish were blamed. War was declared in 1898. Spain was defeated, and at the Treaty of Paris, signed in December 1898, Spain formally recognised the Independence of Cuba. As part of that treaty, Puerto Rico also became a territory of the United States. The United States did not withdraw its troops from Cuba until 1901, and even so the Platt Amendment ensured that the United States had close control over Cuban Affairs after the withdrawal of the United States military. The Platt Agreement included the right of the United States to intervene in Cuba for the "protection of life, liberty and individual property." This amendment was not withdrawn until 1934. The appearance of being a good neighbour to Cuba was therefore being used to attempt to carry out United States expansionist aims. Panama The United States became interested in building a Canal connecting the Caribbean Sea to the Pacific Ocean because it was in her interest. The country was expanding westwards and gold had been discovered in California in 1848. It was necessary to find a shorter sea route to California than sailing south around cape Horn in Chile. Further, at the Treaty of Paris, the United States had acquired colonies in the Pacific i.e. Guam and the Philippines and wanted their war ships to have a short route to their territories for protection. In 1850, the U.S. signed the Clayton-Bulwer Treaty with Britain in which both countries agreed to share in the construction and control of the canal across the Isthmus of Panama, which belonged to Columbia. Britain became more interested in building the Suez Canal and, a French Company obtained the rights from Colombia (valid until 1904), to build a canal in Panama. ...read more.


and much of Latin America, because of the Monroe Document and the Roosevelt Corollary. The Good Neighbour Policy was introduced in response to nationalistic movements in Latin America, which viewed the former policies as an invasion of their sovereignty. The United States did not wish to have active enemies in its "neighbourhood". She was forced therefore to stick to this Policy when its economy was in turmoil during the depression of 1929-1932 and during her recovery period after. It can be seen that the United States did not consider that this policy prevented it from intervening in other countries if it felt "its interests" were threatened as it reserved the right to do in 1948 when the Organisation of the American States was formed. Its obsession with regional security, which dominated its policy after the construction of the Panama Canal, continued during World War II with its insistence on getting bases in the Caribbean in return for warships. Their earlier expansionists policies had paved the way for the country to become prosperous and its influence had been so firmly established over the region in terms of trade and investment that it could afford to relax its physical presence and control these countries economically. There was however, physical intervention covertly with the Bay of Pigs invasion in 1961 and the naval blockade of Cuba in 1962. In 1979, there was the invasion of Grenada. It may be argued that the United States is still in an interventionist phase as it appears that the United States will physically intervene to police the region whenever it considers that its interests are being threatened. Question A: Critically examine the change in the United States policy of non-intervention to intervention in the Caribbean. B: Discuss the "Good Neighbour" Policy Kejan Johnson-Haynes Queen's Royal College Centre no. 1646 History SBA The United States' Intervention in the Caribbean Table of Contents Introduction...................................................................1 United States Government Policies....................................2 Historical Background...................................................5 The Effect of American Policy in Latin America....................7 Other Policies Affecting the Caribbean................................10 Section B: The Good Neighbour Policy..............................12 Conclusion.................................................................15 Maps........................................................................ ...read more.

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