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American Imperialism Within The 19th Century History Essay


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During the era of the 19th century, it is a historical fact that several of the world's most powerful nations took colony of the smaller ones in order to reap benefits which were deemed to be self-serving of the country's respective goals. European countries for instance, such as France and Germany, took colony of some of the countries in Africa in order to take control of the resources and other economic benefits which were present in those African countries. Moreover, the United States of America, being another powerful country in the global context, also took colony of several countries in order to reap economic benefits.

In order to potentially expand its role in terms of governing with power in the global landscape, the American imperialism was brought about in the 19th century with the main goal of driving the country's economy and increasing the nation's economic benefits. Because of this objective of the United States of America, the government executed an aggressive policy for expansion as they aim to grab political, economic, and military control. Their main target was to look for nation and markets which they can be able to easily colonize. They took look and eyed various investment opportunities in different countries such as the Philippines where they thought of certain mines as an attractive investment for their nation. Still part of their intention of reaping economic benefits from their imperialist acts, the nation have always though that imperialism would bring them the cheapest labor force from the country with the lowest economic situation and therefore would enable them to manufacture American goods at significantly reduced costs. Aside from the relatively low cost of labors from the colonized territories during the American imperialism in the 19th century, the nation also benefited from having the cheapest raw materials which can be easily used in manufacturing the country's products. Another reason why the Americans established imperialism in the 19th century is the fact that the American West was closing, and therefore there was a need for opening of new markets. The American imperialism is said to operate on the perspective that stronger nations are there to take colony of weaker nations. These weaker nations would then help the stronger ones in order to gain wealth and they will pass along this wealth to the nation or colonies which they dominate (Cunningham, 2010). .

After the Spanish American War during the 19th century, the American government was able to fully realize the potential of other countries and states which can serve as their colonies during the times of their global imperialism. Some of these colonies included the islands which they have conquered from the Spaniards after the war which included Cuba, Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Philippines.

During the American imperialism of the 19th century, there are various events which transpired and lead to various situations not only in the American context, but in the global landscape as well. One of the significant events which transpired during the period was the beneficial advantage of the imperial nations such as the United States such as being able to expand foreign commerce and being able to help in the improvement of the domestic economies of the nations which were under their colonization. Exports have been greater than their imports, resulting into an increased nation's wealth. It also provided the opportunity for natives to work in their native lands without having to work overseas only to seek for greener pastures. Moreover, there were also unfortunate events which transpired during the American imperialism of the 19th century especially among its colonies. There were attacks which resulted into killings and some communities were burned by the military to serve as the United States concentration camps in some colonies. Some areas were put under complete control of the government and military of the United States to fully reap the economic potentials of such weaker nations (Brinkley et al, 1987).

The article on American Anti-Imperialist League talks about how such imperialist acts have been condemned especially in relational to the bloody encounters which resulted in the quest of the American government to seek power among its colonies. It centered on the case of the Philippines where the control of the United States has lead into unfortunate events among local communities. Such acts have been condemned by the group and is said to be hostile to the nation's liberty and is an act of militarism, criminal aggression, and a disloyalty to the sacred principles of the government. Their view of imperialism was that such act is unjust among colonies that were controlled through a violence and obstruction of the rights of the local people. The Anti-Imperialist League view imperialism as being horror and deemed as an extension of the American sovereignty through the use of Spanish methods. The foreign policies of imperialism, although deemed to have helped some economies in terms of generating wealth, resulted in the suppression of the general rights of the people and the government which served as colonies to the United States. The wars which were waged against these colonies resulted into death of civilians and communities which were effects of the American's quest for power all over the globe.

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