The Monroe Doctrine was considered a dead letter for many years. The letter, bold proclamation formally declared that the Western Hemisphere was free from any European influence and more specifically European expansion. As a result, they bemused their powers as they knew the purpose of the United States in the region was to enforce its territorial claim.
Even so, the situation had drastically changed in 1900. There was a bold, that aimed at expanding America and it was spreading its wings rapidly. It dared anyone in the old world to challenge it but none could do it. However, when Theodore Roosevelt took office as the president of the United States, he reasserted the old declaration by Monroe.
Cuba therefore became the new foundation for the established Latin America Policy. The US was however fearful that the new nation would possibly prey on the imperial vultures of Europe. US diplomats had to sharpen their talons on the island. As a result, Cuba was forbidden to sign any treaty that would threaten its independence in the Platt Amendment of 1901.
Cuba was also prohibited from securing large debts under the amendment act. This was to prevent European vessels from landing on Cuban shores. These were tough conditions and they had to be strictly followed. If any condition was violated, Cuba would then permit American troops to land on its shores and restore peace and order.
The US under the Platt Amendment of 1901 was also granted a lease in Guantanamo Bay at a naval basal. Cuba was independent by name and became the legal US protectorate. These among other factors convinced President Roosevelt that Latin America was highly vulnerable to attack from European countries.
He therefore added his own corollary and dusted off the doctrine by Monroe. The Monroe Doctrine played a very crucial role in blocking further European influence and expansion in the Western Hemisphere and this was enhanced by the Roosevelt Corollary as it went a step further.
A phrase Chronic Wrongdoing became common as it referred to any possible wrong doing by Latin America including civil unrest and large debts would undoubtedly allow the US military to intervene. America was therefore to police different parts of the Western Hemisphere while Europe would remain across the Atlantic region.
The new policy was however enforced in 105 when the Dominican Republic faced possible invasion by European debt collectors. The US started to invade the nation, seized all its customs and houses and ruled over the Dominican Republic. This was the case as the island nation became a full protectorate of the US until the situation was contained.
The Big Stick
Following the invasion of the Island nation, the effects of the policy were so evident. Teddy Roosevelt had a powerful unique motto, Speak Softly and Carry a Big Stick. According to him, the big stick was the newly created American Navy. He remained firm to possess and resolve the naval might back to its former interests.
The US on the other hand could defend its territory by all means and avoid a major war. Latin America was against the corollary, resented the involvement of US as a Yankee Imperialism and their animosity towards their neighbors grew worse by the day. The US in 20th century invaded Latin America and spread its influence through the region.
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