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Admirals, Generals, and American Foreign Policy, 1898-1914

Admirals, Generals, and American Foreign Policy, 1898-1914

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    Admirals, Generals, and American Foreign Policy, 1898-1914
    Book Description:

    After the Spanish-American War the United States, both by design and by accident, became involved in the Caribbean and the Far East on a scale that would have seemed highly improbable before 1898. As an "emerging" world power, the United States had to grapple with new issues, among them the role of military men and military power in protecting and advancing America's position in the world.

    Richard D. Challener has examined civil-military relationships in the period 1898-1914 to answer the following questions: To what extent did army and navy officers develop opinions on foreign policy issues? Were the admirals and generals consulted by the civilian officials of government, and did they participate in decision-making? How did the President and State Department use the military services in execution of foreign policy? Were military and diplomatic policy co-ordinated? Does an examination of these relationships help to assess either the interpretations of Kennan and the "realists" or Williams and the "New Left"? And ultimately, how effectively did the United States manage to reconcile force and diplomacy?

    This book sustains the case for interpreting 1898 and its aftermath as a deliberate search for an "informal" or "insular" empire and shows that American leaders, both civil and military, accepted an interventionist ethic.

    Originally published in 1973.

    ThePrinceton Legacy Libraryuses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These paperback editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

    eISBN: 978-1-4008-6771-4
    Subjects: Political Science

Table of Contents

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  1. Acknowledgments
    (pp. ix-ix)
    Richard D. Challener
  2. Abbreviations for Sources Frequently Cited
    (pp. x-2)
  3. Introduction
    (pp. 3-11)

    On the North China coast in the summer of 1900 units of the United States Navy were actively supporting the operations of an interna tional military expedition then fighting its way toward the walled city of Peking. Within that city the American minister and his European colleagues were besieged by rebellious Boxer hordes, and it was still uncertain whether Minister E. H. Conger and his fellow diplomats could hold out until help arrived—uncertain, indeed, even if they remained alive. In Washington Secretary of State John Hay was frantically struggling to piece together a viable Far Eastern policy. Surprised by...

  4. CHAPTER ONE Ideas, Institutions, and Practices, 1898-1914
    (pp. 12-80)

    The typical officer of the United States Navy was enthusiastic about the new American empire which had been acquired by the United States in 1898 in the Caribbean and the Far East. He was also convinced that his country was inevitably bound to play a role in world affairs commensurate to its size and wealth. To Captain Henry C. Taylor, the officer who formalized the General Board’s request for the Chusan Islands, the United States was now fulfilling the dictates of destiny. “In 1898,” Taylor wrote, “a duty which has haunted us for many years became plainly apparent.” The Spanish-American...

  5. CHAPTER TWO The Navy in the Caribbean in the Age of McKinley and Roosevelt
    (pp. 81-178)

    At the precise moment when the peace negotiations with Spain were opening in September of 1898, the Navy Department sent a set of confidential orders to Admiral William Sampson and Commodore Winfield Schley, the two ranking officers in Cuban waters. As a matter of highest priority they were directed to obtain all naval stations and all naval property left behind in Cuba by the departing Spaniards. Speed was essential. “It is possible,” their orders read, “that the United States War Department may try to obtain custody of some of this property.” If the Army was successful, then the Navy could...

  6. CHAPTER THREE Asia and the American Military, 1898-1909
    (pp. 179-264)

    Major Morris Foote, who commanded the 9th Infantry during the China Relief Expedition, was growing increasingly worried about the American future in China. “It seems to me,” he informed his superiors early in 1901, “that the United States will be very much left out if we do not take our concession now when we can. It is Minister Conger’s business, but if we want any ‘open door’ in Tientsin, we better hustle around and get that little piece of river front at once, or otherwise our merchants will have to play second fiddle.”¹ Major General Adna Chaffee, Foote’s commander and...

  7. CHAPTER FOUR Taft and Knox: The Military Dimensions of Dollar Diplomacy
    (pp. 265-363)

    In March 1909, when President William Howard Taft and Secretary of State Philander Knox took office, one of their very first acts was to establish a naval watch in the Caribbean to prevent ex-President Cipriano Castro from regaining control of Venezuela. In February 1913, when the two men were on the verge of leaving office, one of their last acts was to send units of the fleet up and down the Central American coast in an effort to convince citizens of those countries that the inauguration of Woodrow Wilson would not mean an open door for revolutions in Latin America....

  8. CHAPTER FIVE Wilson and Bryan: Moralism and Military Power
    (pp. 364-400)

    Just a few weeks after Woodrow Wilson had been inaugurated as President a short but sharp crisis erupted in Japanese-American relations. During the course of that crisis the military services, especially the Navy, recommended to the new administration that it adopt certain specific measures of military preparedness intended to prevent any Japanese surprise attack upon America’s Pacific possessions. The Cabinet, after full discussion, rejected them. Soon, however, both Wilson and Josephus Daniels, his Secretary of the Navy, concluded that the Army and Navy were trying to force their hands and, worse still, were continuing to put pressure upon them after...

  9. CHAPTER SIX Conclusions
    (pp. 401-412)

    A few modest conclusions are clearly in order. In many respects this book has been limited to a static analysis of certain aspects of civilmilitary relations in the general area of American foreign policy. The limitation was in large part imposed by the materials available, above all, by the episodic nature of the military’s involvement in the formulation of American foreign policy. But it must again be emphasized that the institutions necessary for a sustained and evolving civil-military relationship never developed in the United States between 1898 and 1914. While the concept of a Council of National Defense had its...