U.S. History 1877-Present 5: The Monroe Doctrine and The Roosevelt Corollary
And henceforth, the Monroe Doctrine and Roosevelt Corollary would declare that if any outsiders reached out towards the Americas for colonization, we'd viciously slap their hands away.
|U.S. History||U.S. History 1877-Present|
In a speech to Congress, Monroe said [Monroe gives speech to Congress]
that henceforth, the U.S.
would not interfere with European
colonies and affairs.
But at the same time, he insisted that European
powers stay out of the Americas.
Specifically, he said,
the American continents are [Monroe drops seed on stage]
henceforth not to be considered
as subjects for future colonization
by European powers.
It's kinda like when a kid draws a line [Sisters arguing about boundaries in a shared bedroom]
across the floor of a shared bedroom and tells
her sister, "you stay on your side,
and I'll stay on mine. Oh, and
don't touch my stuff or I'll read your diary [Sister holds a diary and threatens to read]
to mom." Or, uh, sorta like
that, but not—because here we're talking about national
boundaries, global power, and international
political alliances. Though, uh, we're not
saying that they didn't keep diaries. Anyway, [Monroe writes in his diary]
this declaration by Monroe
ended up being called the Monroe Doctrine [Monroe announces The Monroe Doctrine]
and it influenced U.S. foreign policy for years
to come. By the 1890s,
the global situation had changed.
New forces in Central America
and South America were coming into play,
which would lead Teddy Roosevelt to give the Monroe
Doctrine an extreme makeover. [Roosevelt gives The Monroe Doctrine a makeover]
Imagine Teddy Roosevelt stepping into
the White House and being like,
"Uh, no. I want it bigger,
badder, and more imperialist.
Also, more stuffed bears [Roosevelt holds a stuffed bear]
for no reason." Yeah, that was Teddy.
A key event was the Venezuelan
Crisis of 1902.
Not to be confused with Venezuela's
other crises. Basically,
Venezuela had an eensy-weensy little
civil war, and some folks [Venezuela civil war scene]
from Europe lost money, property,
and investments they'd had in Venezuela.
So, Germany, Britain, and Italy
told the new president of Venezuela that he owed
them a ton of money for the damages [Germany, Britain, and Italy presents bill to Castro]
their citizens had suffered.
President Castro said, "Oh yeah?
Who's gonna make us pay?" To which
the Germans responded by sending a
fleet of ships to blockade Venezuela, [German fleet of ships enters scene]
and Castro was probably like,
"It was a rhetorical question! Gosh,
guys." This meant that a bunch of
boats cut off the entire country from [Boats cut off trade route]
overseas trade. Well, Castro wasn't
too worried at first, because he assumed the Monroe
Doctrine would send the U.S. of A. to his
rescue. But America shuffled
its collective feet for a while first,
since European powers weren't exactly trying [Wilhelm II plants flag]
to seize territory or re-establish
colonies or any of the stuff the Monroe
Doctrine specifically warned against.
But eventually Teddy Roosevelt took the reins
and sent a very big navy down to Venezuela. [Roosevelt sends a navy to Venezuela]
Then the Germans suddenly
decided they had better things to do. [German ships flee]
Well, Venezuela still ended up
paying fines, though, which made Teddy [Venezuela pays fines]
concerned that Europeans would see their meddling as
profitable and do it again.
So he decided the U.S. should take a stand in
similar situations. Yeah,
"taking a stand" translates to "using
the military" in Teddy-speak.
Well in his heart he was still a Rough Rider,
you know, this more aggressive foreign
policy was called the Roosevelt Corollary, [Roosevelt holds the Roosevelt corollary document]
and it made the Monroe Doctrine look like
child's play. Seems like Teddy was [Child makes a hat out of The Monroe Doctrine]
the grizzly and Monroe was actually
the, uh, teddy bear. Still,
who would want to snuggle with a bear named Monroe? [Kid screams and runs away from Monroe teddy bear]
Heh. It just isn't