Essay on Realism And Idealism During The Spanish American War

1744 Words Apr 13th, 2016 7 Pages
Realism and idealism throughout the Spanish-American War were essential in shaping America’s foreign policy. By the middle of the 1890 's the american western frontier was viewed by many as being "closed". This was seen because the fulfillment of the westward expansions started under the banner of "manifest destiny". the public perception of the "closing of the west", along side the philosophy of Social Darwinism, contributed to a desire for continued expansion of american lands and the spreading of american culture. in the 1890 's, many Americans cast covetous eyes on outside US; Samoa, Central America, and the Philippines. The result was a shift in US foreign policy at the end of the 19th century from a reserved, motherland involved republic to a lively imperial power.
When William McKinley became president in 1897, he was already aiming to expand America’s role within the world. Spain’s Cuban troubles provided the perfect opportunity. Publicly, McKinley declared: “We want no wars of conquest; we must avoid the temptation of territorial aggression.” however among the U. S. government, the influential cabal that was seeking war and expansion knew they 'd found their man. senator Henry Cabot Lodge wrote to Theodore Roosevelt, now at the Navy Department, “Unless i am profoundly mistaken, the Administration is now committed to the larger policy we both desire.” This “large policy” aimed to break decisively with our tradition of noninterference and neutrality in foreign…

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