Imperialism vs anti-imperialism essay

These represented the first planks of the economic infrastructure of the postwar American Lebensraum. In a wide sense, commerce is the mother of all wars. Prior to his death in President Roosevelt was planning to withdraw all U. Soviet actions in Poland and Czechoslovakia led his successor Harry Truman to reconsider. Heavily influenced by George Kennan , Washington policymakers believed that the Soviet Union was an expansionary dictatorship that threatened American interests.

In their theory, Moscow's weakness was that it had to keep expanding to survive; and that, by containing or stopping its growth, stability could be achieved in Europe. The result was the Truman Doctrine regarding Greece and Turkey.

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A second equally important consideration was the need to restore the world economy, which required the rebuilding and reorganizing of Europe for growth. This matter, more than the Soviet threat, was the main impetus behind the Marshall Plan of A third factor was the realization, especially by Britain and the three Benelux nations, that American military involvement was needed [ clarification needed ].

Geir Lundestad has commented on the importance of "the eagerness with which America's friendship was sought and its leadership welcomed In Western Europe, America built an empire 'by invitation'" [73] At the same time, the US interfered in Italian and French politics in order to purge elected communist officials who might oppose such invitations. In South Korea, the US quickly allied with Syngman Rhee , leader of the fight against the popularly established committees that proclaimed a provisional government.

Imperialism and Anti-Imperialism

The mass call for an independent and unified Korean government was bloodily repressed by Rhee's forces, which were overseen by the US Army. This pre-Korean War violence saw the deaths of , people, the majority of them civilians. John Tirman , an American political theorist has asserted that this policy was heavily influenced by America's imperialistic policy in Asia in the 19th century, with its goals to Christianize and Americanize the peasant masses.

In Vietnam , the US again eschewed its anti-imperialist rhetoric by materially supporting the French Empire in a colonial counterinsurgency. Influenced by the Grand Area policy, the US eventually assumed total responsibility for war against the Vietnamese communists, including suppressing nationwide elections when it appeared that Ho Chi Minh would win.

American exceptionalism is the notion that the United States occupies a special niche among the nations of the world [79] in terms of its national credo , historical evolution, and political and religious institutions and origins. Philosopher Douglas Kellner traces the identification of American exceptionalism as a distinct phenomenon back to 19th century French observer Alexis de Tocqueville , who concluded by agreeing that the U. President Donald Trump has said that he does not "like the term" American exceptionalism because he thinks it is "insulting the world".

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He told tea party activists in Texas that "If you're German, or you're from Japan, or you're from China, you don't want to have people saying that. As a Monthly Review editorial opines on the phenomenon, "in Britain, empire was justified as a benevolent 'white man's burden'. And in the United States, empire does not even exist; 'we' are merely protecting the causes of freedom, democracy and justice worldwide. Journalist Ashley Smith divides theories of the U. There is also a conservative, anti-interventionist view as expressed by American journalist John T. Flynn :. The enemy aggressor is always pursuing a course of larceny, murder, rapine and barbarism.

We are always moving forward with high mission, a destiny imposed by the Deity to regenerate our victims, while incidentally capturing their markets; to civilise savage and senile and paranoid peoples, while blundering accidentally into their oil wells. A " social-democratic " theory says that imperialistic U. The complex is said to benefit from war profiteering and the looting of natural resources , often at the expense of the public interest.

Alfred Thayer Mahan , who served as an officer in the U. Navy during the late 19th century, supported the notion of American imperialism in his book titled The Influence of Sea Power upon History. Mahan argued that modern industrial nations must secure foreign markets for the purpose of exchanging goods and, consequently, they must maintain a maritime force that is capable of protecting these trade routes.

A theory of "super-imperialism" argues that imperialistic U. The argument asserts that capitalism in the Global North Europe, the U. Following the invasion of Afghanistan in , the idea of American imperialism was reexamined. In November , jubilant marines hoisted an American flag over Kandahar and in a stage display referred to the moment as the third after those on San Juan Hill and Iwo Jima.

All moments, writes Neil Smith , express US global ambition. The phrase "American empire" appeared more than times in news stories during November — April In numerous scholars debated the "America as Empire" issue. Maier states:.

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Since September 11, Harvard professor Niall Ferguson states:. It used to be that only the critics of American foreign policy referred to the American empire In the past three or four years [—], however, a growing number of commentators have begun to use the term American empire less pejoratively, if still ambivalently, and in some cases with genuine enthusiasm. US historians have generally considered the late 19th century imperialist urge as an aberration in an otherwise smooth democratic trajectory Yet a century later, as the US empire engages in a new period of global expansion, Rome is once more a distant but essential mirror for American elites Now, with military mobilisation on an exceptional scale after September , the United States is openly affirming and parading its imperial power.

For the first time since the s, the naked display of force is backed by explicitly imperialist discourse. A leading spokesman for America-as-Empire is British historian A. Instead, anxieties about The negative impact of globalization on rural and rust-belt America were at work says Hopkins:. Conservative Harvard professor Niall Ferguson concludes that worldwide military and economic power have combined to make the U. It is a good idea he thinks, because like the successful British Empire in the 19th century it works to globalize free markets, enhanced the rule of law and promote representative government.

He fears, however, that Americans lack the long-term commitment in manpower and money to keep the Empire operating. The term was coined by William R. Clark, who has written a book with the same title. The phrase oil currency war is sometimes used with the same meaning. Many — perhaps most-- scholars have decided that that the United States lacks the key essentials of an empire. For example while there are American military bases all over, the American soldiers do not rule over the local people, and the United States government does not send out governors or permanent settlers like all the historic empires did.

Maier has examined the America-as-Empire issue at length. He says the traditional understanding of the word "empire" does not apply because the United States does not exert formal control over other nations nor engage in systematic conquest. The best term is that the United States is a "hegemon. World historian Anthony Pagden asks is the United States really an empire? They go on to say that the U. Geographer David Harvey says there has emerged a new type of imperialism due to geographical distinctions as well as unequal rates of development.

The 'new' imperialism, then, has led to an alignment of the interests of capitalists and politicians in order to prevent the rise and expansion of possible economic and political rivals from challenging America's dominance. Classics professor and war historian Victor Davis Hanson dismisses the notion of an American Empire altogether, with a mocking comparison to historical empires: "We do not send out proconsuls to reside over client states, which in turn impose taxes on coerced subjects to pay for the legions. We do not see any profits in Korea, but instead accept the risk of losing almost 40, of our youth to ensure that Kias can flood our shores and that shaggy students can protest outside our embassy in Seoul.

The existence of "proconsuls", however, has been recognized by many since the early Cold War. Schlesinger detected several contemporary imperial features, including "proconsuls": Washington does not directly run many parts of the world. Rather, its "informal empire" was one "richly equipped with imperial paraphernalia: troops, ships, planes, bases, proconsuls, local collaborators, all spread wide around the luckless planet.

Their standing in their regions has usually dwarfed that of ambassadors and assistant secretaries of state. Harvard Historian Niall Ferguson calls the regional combatant commanders , among whom the whole globe is divided, the "pro-consuls" of this "imperium". Like the proconsuls of Rome they were supposed to bring order and law to the unruly and anarchical world". They "had evolved into the modern-day equivalent of the Roman Empire's proconsuls—well-funded, semi-autonomous, unconventional centers of US foreign policy".

Another distinction of Victor Davis Hanson —that US bases, contrary to the legions, are costly to America and profitable for their hosts—expresses the American view. The hosts express a diametrically opposite view. Japan pays for 25, Japanese working on US bases. At an alliance-level analysis, case studies of South Korea and Japan present that the necessity of the alliance relationship with the US and their relative capabilities to achieve security purposes lead them to increase the size of direct economic investment to support the US forces stationed in their territories, as well as to facilitate the US global defense posture.

In addition, these two countries have increased their political and economic contribution to the US-led military operations beyond the geographic scope of the alliance in the post-Cold War period Behavioral changes among the US allies in response to demands for sharing alliance burdens directly indicate the changed nature of unipolar alliances.

Mr. White's Website / American Imperialism

In order to maintain its power preponderance and primacy, the unipole has imposed greater pressure on its allies to devote much of their resources and energy to contributing to its global defense posture In fact, increasing the "economic burdens of the allies" is one of the major priorities of President Donald Trump. Annexation is a crucial instrument in the expansion of a nation, due to the fact that once a territory is annexed it must act within the confines of its superior counterpart.

The United States Congress' ability to annex a foreign territory is explained in a report from the Congressional Committee on Foreign Relations, "If, in the judgment of Congress, such a measure is supported by a safe and wise policy, or is based upon a natural duty that we owe to the people of Hawaii, or is necessary for our national development and security, that is enough to justify annexation, with the consent of the recognized government of the country to be annexed. Prior to annexing a territory, the American government still held immense power through the various legislations passed in the late s.

The Platt Amendment was utilized to prevent Cuba from entering into any agreements with foreign nations, and also granted the Americans the right to build naval stations on their soil. When asked on April 28, , on Al Jazeera whether the United States was "empire building", Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld replied, "We don't seek empires, we're not imperialistic.

We never have been.

However, historian Donald W. Meinig says the imperial behavior by the United States dates at least to the Louisiana Purchase , which he describes as an "imperial acquisition—imperial in the sense of the aggressive encroachment of one people upon the territory of another, resulting in the subjugation of that people to alien rule". Writers and academics of the early 20th century, like Charles A.

Beard , in support of non-interventionism sometimes referred to as " isolationism " , discussed American policy as being driven by self-interested expansionism going back as far as the writing of the Constitution. Some politicians today do not agree. Pat Buchanan claims that the modern United States' drive to empire is "far removed from what the Founding Fathers had intended the young Republic to become. Andrew Bacevich argues that the U. A political unit that has overwhelming superiority in military power, and uses that power to influence the internal behavior of other states, is called an empire.

Because the United States does not seek to control territory or govern the overseas citizens of the empire, we are an indirect empire, to be sure, but an empire nonetheless. If this is correct, our goal is not combating a rival, but maintaining our imperial position, and maintaining imperial order. In Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media , the political activist Noam Chomsky argues that exceptionalism and the denials of imperialism are the result of a systematic strategy of propaganda, to "manufacture opinion" as the process has long been described in other countries.

Thorton wrote that "[ Where colonization finds analysts and analogies, imperialism must contend with crusaders for and against. Since , [] Emmanuel Todd assumes that USA cannot hold for long the status of mondial hegemonic power due to limited resources. Reviewing Todd's After the Empire , G. John Ikenberry found that it had been written in "a fit of French wishful thinking".

Anti-imperialist writings by Mark Twain - 6. To the Person Sitting in Darkness

Other political scientists, such as Daniel Nexon and Thomas Wright, argue that neither term exclusively describes foreign relations of the United States. They claim that the general trend in U. Some critics of imperialism argue that military and cultural imperialism are interdependent.