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The Monroe Doctrine: Is It Still Prevalent In The 20th And 21st Centuries?

1075 words - 5 pages

Since the beginning of time humans in general have been social creatures, ultimately resulting in a need or want to get involved in other people’s affairs. Even as early as Aristotle (who was an ancient Greek philosopher) described humans and their interactions with one another. Therefore, one can conclude that friendships and relationships have been in existence since the beginning of human interaction. One can say that foreign policy has occurred for thousands of years under this pretext. People often believe that it is their duty to correct the injustice or to aid those around them. The question of whether or not a foreign policy is necessary has been the age old inquiry. The beginning of human associations with foreign countries and the policy to handle them is as ancient as societies themselves. For some, they believe it is vital in order to strategically keep the world balanced, while for others they insist that it creates more chaos. John Quincy Adams, George W. Bush, and Bill Clinton (just to name a few) were all men who had very different opinions on this delicate subject.
John Quincy Adams was one individual that believed that foreign policy was hindering the United States from expanding. In 1823, Napoleon had conquered Spain and Portugal, which resulted in Spain loosing most of its political power in Latin America. This meant that most of the Spanish empire was now nonexistent. President James Monroe soon discovered that France wanted to re-establish a Spanish American empire. Monroe soon feared that Europeans would try to continue to colonize the United States. As a result of this trepidation and Monroe’s desire to end colonization, the Monroe Doctrine was born in “order to discourage Spain or France from reconquering these colonies” (American Promise, 2009). The president soon warned that “the American Continents, by the free and independent condition which they have assumed and maintain, are henceforth not to be considered as subjects for future colonization by any European power” (American Promise, 2009). Any attempt to hinder American colonization would be considered “the manifestation of unfriendly disposition towards the United States” (American Promise, 2009). In exchange for the Europeans staying out of the United States affairs, the United States would stay out of their affairs as well. The main idea of the Monroe Doctrine (which was a bold new approach to foreign policy) was that neither the Europeans nor the Americans would help or hinder each others affairs. In previous years of fighting of the United States fighting or helping various other countries this was a very different approach for the American people.
While the ideologies of the Monroe Doctrine being against foreign policy have not been entirely relevant in both the Clinton and Bush administrations, this doctrine has still had an impact on international interactions. In recent years, due to a growing level of globalization and international affairs, the United...

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