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|U.S. History||The Progressive Era and the Roaring Twenties: 1890-1929|
Cuba wanted their independence… Spain not so much.
And just like an adult separating two kids who are fighting,
America decided to step in and intervene.
Although… America might have actually been a third child in this scenario.
They were certainly acting immaturely. They didn’t stick their noses in because they
were being dramatically affected by the war themselves…
...instead, it was really just an itch they felt they had to scratch.
Believe it or not, people… ahem, Roosevelt… were actually delivering public addresses
about how soft American men had become.
And it wasn’t just because of the invention of the Tootsie Roll.
Okay, so there were a couple of reasons the U.S. got involved, other than their irrepressible
need to get all up in everybody’s business.
First, it would benefit Americans for trade purposes. If Cuba could win the war and get
Spain out of its hair…
…shipping products back and forth between the two nations would become
much safer and easier and more profitable.
And second… a U.S. ship exploded off the coast of Cuba, and it was blamed on a supposedly
Spanish naval mine. They didn’t have absolute proof that it
was indeed a Spanish mine…
…but when a country is looking to put a little hair on its chest, it can’t always
be bothered to acquire proof.
Once the American public got wind of this tragedy…
…they were totally behind a U.S. declaration of war.
It was time to head over to Cuba to stave off the Spanish, guns a-blazin’.
With America’s mighty military in the picture, the war didn’t last long.
The Spanish fleet was crippled before the year was over…
…and there were thousands of others who had died on the mainland.
Most of them had been killed because of the campaign run by the likes of Teddy Roosevelt
and his “Rough Riders.”
I am not making that name up.
Guess they must have had a bad case of saddle sores.
And that’s where I came into play.
I was drawn up in the city of Paris…
hence my name…
in late 1898 after the full surrender of the Spanish…
…which declared Cuba independent...
as well as a handful of other countries.
It was a fantastic development, first of all because freedom is groovy…
…but also because it meant that all that shooting and killing could end.
Whatever happened to the “Brotherhood of man,” people?
Anyway, the U.S. is no longer at war,
so they’ll have to bide their time until the next one knocks at their door.
I’m sure they won’t have to wait long. In the meantime…