Theodore Roosevelt Speak softly and carry a big stick, [and] you will go far These were words said by and lived by Theodore Roosevelt. Theodore Roosevelt (or TR as they sometimes referred to him as) had a very big stick He used this big stick to make America an imperialist power to the world. His big stick was really all the power the United States of America had in its money, land, army and armed forces. No other world power would want to get in a conflict with the United States.
So Theodore Roosevelt did as he pleased with foreign affairs. He showed the world this with the whole Panama and Cuba fiasco. Roosevelt then did it again with his views toward the Monroe Doctrine. He didn t stop there he also showed his imperialistic views with the Japan and Russia conflict. Theodore Roosevelt truly was the ultimate imperialist. Theodore Roosevelt decided it was in the United States best interest to build a canal.
Roosevelt also saw this as a chance to help himself be more appealing to the public. With a canal the United States would have an easier time defending there imperialistic gains which were Puerto Rico, Hawaii, and the Philippines. The United States had a lot of trouble getting started building the canal. Roosevelt signed the Haybunau-Vanilla treaty which helped them gain Panama land right under Columbia's feet.
Columbia hesitantly defied the United states because they didn t want the same fate as Puerto Rico. In 1914 the Panama canal was finally built and Roosevelt had got what he wanted, a canal and basically control of Latin America. Roosevelt didn t stop there with the Caribbean countries he continued to try to get imperial gains south of the United States. Many Latin American countries were in debt to European countries (mostly the United Kingdom and Germany). One of the Lati countries, Venezuela had not paid there debtors which were Germany. So Germany sunk two of there warships and raided a small town.
Roosevelt heard of this and thought Europe would stay in Latin America to collect money. Which was a direct violation of the Monroe Doctrine. Roosevelt added his own twist to the Doctrine which was known as the Roosevelt Corollary. This stated that if any future problems arrived the European countries would come to the United States and be paid off.
Roosevelt made it sound that the United States didn t want anyone pushing around Latin America. In truth though Roosevelt had done this so he could get a tighter imperialistic grip on Latin America without outside interference. The Doctrine helped the United States turn the Caribbean into a Yankee lake. Much of Latin America were in fear for they could be the next United States imperial conquest.
Then Roosevelt went on a much bigger stage which was in front of the world. Tokyo officials approached Roosevelt to help them begin peace negotiations with Russia, what they had just recently had a war with. Roosevelt worked behind the scenes with both countries and after the treaty was made both felt cheated by the United States. Many Japanese laborers had began flooding California with there people. Roosevelt let the Japanese have equal rights but feared that Japan might think of this as a weakness and takeover some of the United States conquests.
So Roosevelt sent sixteen white battle ships around the world to scare everyone and show Latin America who was boss. Theodore Roosevelt had done a great deal for the United States to become the imperial power that they are today. He had built the Panama Canal, threw Europe out of Latin America and shown the world that the United States is an imperial force to be reckoned with. Roosevelt truly was the ultimate imperialist but this is really not a good thing it shows how egotistic and self rite ous the United States and Roosevelt really were. Sure the United States got power but what was the cost, the same thing the United States supposedly lives by, freedom..