Spanish American Turmoil

November 16, 2013 at 1:24 pm Leave a comment

Sam Operchuck


The Monroe Doctrine.



            Before the time of the Monroe doctrine, a revolutionary uprising had been taking place in the Spanish American colonies from the period of 1810 through 1822. By the time of 1822, the majority of Spanish America had fought their way to independence. At this time in Europe, four powers met at the Congress of Verona to discuss the possibility of intervening and reconquering the colonies for Spain (this was primarily sought for by King Louis XVIII of France). Austria, France, Prussia and Russia were all included in this congress, however England opposed the movement for two primary concerns: for one, England had already built upon a strong trade base with the freed Spanish colonies and stood to lose profit. Secondly, France spoke of sending a strong army to Spanish America, which England feared would also give France opportunity to establish colonies. With all this at stake, England (via foreign secretary George Canning) offered an alliance to ward off Spain and France. John Quincy Adams warned against alliance with England as possibly hindering future westward expansion, and Monroe  heeded his suggestion.




Thus at his annual congressional address, President Monroe produced a speech declaring that 1) The United States would avoid interference with existing European colonies, 2) “The United States would not get involved in European affairs”, 3) External nations were prohibited from forming colonies within the Western Hemisphere and 4) if a European country attempted to “control or interfere with a nation in the Western Hemisphere, the United States would view it as a hostile act against this nation”. Many of these arguments were aimed directly at France for her edging towards invasion of Spanish America to develop a monarchy.




Unfortunately and interestingly, the United States did not really hold the power to enforce such a declaration. For a time, the doctrine “went mostly unnoticed”. Europe refrained from entering Latin America mainly from fear of England. Yet the doctrine indeed held more weight than what was realized at the time of its authorship. It would go on to develop and influence American Foreign policy, as well as play key roles in many presidencies in the future.







Entry filed under: Uncategorized.

The Monroe Doctrine

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Trackback this post  |  Subscribe to the comments via RSS Feed

%d bloggers like this: