Why Did the United States Go to War with Spain in 1898? Essay

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The United States went to war with Spain in 1898 for three different reasons: social, economic, and political. These causes were stimulated by commercialism and nationalism. Based on these interpretations it is clear that the desire to be a world wide power, and advance commerical interest were primary factors that led to the declaration of war on Spain.

The main social impact started between 1868 and 1878. While the Cubans were revolting against Spain. General Valeriano Weyler was sent from Spain to force the peasants to leave their homes and were put in concentration camps. Their crops, and houses were affected as well as their livestock. This uproar caused falsified, exaggerated stories to be made up of the Cubans emotional
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President Mckinely knew that they had to protect Cuba because they were so heavily involved. The United States would also benefit from this because Cuba and the Philippines were essential for trade and business. The sugar market and tobacco trade was very much affected by the revolution that was happening in Cuba. This made the Americans quick to act. This gave them another reason to get involved with foreign affairs.

Political causes are known to be the most affective in starting the war. Due to the short term causes that made history. Without these events the Spanish American war could have been completely changed. Due to the riots that were going on in Havana, Mckinely sent the battleship Maine to protect American lives and property. Soon after it was anchored in the harbor, it exploded, resulting in the deaths of 260 Americans. The American press quickly jumped to blame Spain however there was little evidence found for the explosion. President Mckinely refused to declare war, however many eagerly called for war such as Teddy Roosevelt. This unexpected explosion may seem small, however was a major event in the starting of the Spanish American War. The war message and Teller Amendment was what initially started the war. “In the war message the President rejected the idea that the U.S.A would annex Cuba. “He said this would be criminal aggression and morally wrong”(Allan Hux 295). Congress agreed. “It passed an amendment

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