Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Stephen Kinzer - The True Flag (Book Review)

This history of the beginning of American overseas imperialism, when the country started acquiring overseas territory, is most enlightening since I knew little about it.  I am less interested in present day ramifications than the simple history of what happened between 1898 and 102.  During this time, the US annexed Cuba, Guam, and Hawaii, and fought the Spanish to acquire the Philippines.  The country was split between the imperialists and those who opposed such imperialism.  The former were led by people like Theodore Roosevelt and William McKinley, the latter most prominently by Mark Twain.

How should the US act in the world?  An only a democratic example, or imposing its will on foreign countries.  P. 1

Debates over America's role in the world began in 1898.  P. 3

Henry Cabot Lodge was Roosevelt's chief backer and cheerleader.  P. 22

Carl Schurz, a leading anti-imperialist, is a most interesting historical figure.  He had such a long career.  P. 39

TR's actions in Cuba have the slimmest element of truth.  It made his famous.  P. 57

With the Spanish War over Cubs, there was a frenzy in the country over imperial expansion in 1898.  P. 81

According to this book, imperialism vs. anti-imperialism was hotly debated in the country.  I had no idea.  P. 84

Mention is made of Kipling and the white man's burden during this period.  P. 120

William Jennings Bryan is give credit for the passage of the Treaty of Paris which ended the Spanish American War.  P. 124

The Treat became law unamended.  P. 130

The water torture began in the Philippines.  P. 150

VP Hobart died which opened the door for TR to be elected Vice-President in 1900.  P. 156

Taft goes to the Philippines with a promise that McKinley will appoint him to the Supreme Court as soon as he can.  P. 160

A war of counterinsurgency .  P. 161

Lodge of imperialism and Manifest Destiny.  P. 165

Bryan couldn't move away from free silver and hence missed his chance at history in 1900.  P. 172

Mark Twain returns home to become the most publicized spokesman for the anti-imperialism.  P. 178

Cuba gaines its independence but remained firmly under US control.  P. 193

TR's ascension ended the anti-imperialist campaign.  P. 213

What would Twain say about the US imperialism today?  P. 223

This period of American history is most fascinating.  I knew nothing of this era before reading this book.  Fodder for further reading.

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