The industrializing America had needed new markets, raw materials, and overseas territories to compete with the burgeoning European colonial empires. The American Imperialism of the late 1800’s and early 1900’s was aggressive, an ordeal undertaken for the economic welfare of the nation.
Following the Civil War and Reconstruction Eras, Americans began to set their eyes on other shores. With new technology and equipment such as the telegraph and the railroads, the United States had shrunk. No longer was the United States a vast expanse of uncharted territory, but instead, it was a conquered land with a growing population and growing cities. Imperialism was born out of this desire to look across oceans for more land and trade posts for America’s expanding population and economy. Following the Reconstruction Era, the United States debated imperialist policies based on economic, social, military, and political beliefs which ultimately propelled the country to achieving a dominating international reputation.
It begun in 1904 and completed in 1914. They did this because they needed strong power over the world to protect its trading interests and it also empowered America to expand its economy and military influence. US believed that control over sea was the answer to the world preemi...
 Further natural resources like rubber in Congo, oil in Iran, and gold in South Africa encouraged imperialists to expand their spheres of influence past their natural border.  Access to these regions also provided western states a market for their finished goods, textiles primarily. Senator Beveridge explains the need of foreign markets by stating “Where shall we turn for consumers of our surplus? Geography answers the question. China is our natural customer.” French imperialist Jules Ferry also highlights the need for a foreign consumer “...felt more and more urgently by industrialized population of Europe and especially the people of our rich and hardworking country of France: the need for outlets [for exports].” In cases where westerners were buying rather than selling to foreign markets, military intervention was utilized.
In this search, manufacturers needed to find new raw materials in order to better equip themselves to sustain against the newly rising competitors. This caused competition with foreign market systems all around to begin pursuing an imperialistic empire. The European powers responded with aggressive nationalism when expanding their empire. This concept began trending internationally as other nations adapted the new concept of maintaining a steady nation through the new ideals of expansions. After the conclusion of the Civil War and the Reconstruction, the American economy rapidly increased as it developed in the Second Industrial Revolution.
Nationalism was a prevalent ideology worldwide by the late 1800s, and as the industrial revolution allowed the United States to emerge as a world power at this time, there was an urge to compete with Europe in territory as well as technology. In the late 19th to early 20th century, “empire-building” allowed for U.S. capitalistic expansion, thinly veiled by nationalistic rhetoric of “the white man’s burden” and a moral necessity to extend American culture to “inferior” races. The discourse of imperialism necessitated an American national identity, which revolved around the virtues of capitalism and democracy, expressions of masculinity, and the supremacy of the white race. New technology and the advent of mass production had so radically altered U.S. culture that capitalism and consumer markets came to been seen as synonymous with progress and civilization (Lears 202). The rise of industry resulted in rapid urbanization and an influx of immigrants seeking work opportunities in the burgeoning U.S. economy.
Events marking the change of the Japanese empire in to the modern empire of today include the Sino-Japanese War and its consequences, tensions and international treaties with China, and most obviously, the Pacific War with the United States. These events marked the transformation of a militaristic and expansionist empire in to a democratic nation and ally. Japanese expansionism was politically and economically motivated in the case of expanding in to Korea. Korea, under the control of China, was seen as an economic source for Japan as well as an opportunity to expand Japanese security. After two Opium Wars and the Sino-French War, China had become weak and was unable to resist western intervention and encroachment.
Global imperialism began to take its toll on the world; a policy in which stronger nations extended their economic, political, or military control over weaker territories. As the United States began to plunge into the trend of overseas expansion, many wondered if the nation could justify its reasons for imperialism. The answer, my friend, is yes. It all began with European imperialism as Britain, France, Belgium, Italy, Germany, Portugal, and Spain competed for African raw materials and markets. Soon after, Japan joined along with the European nations.
At the time the majority of U.S. citizens and business leaders thought of imperialism as a good thing and a way to increase not only the physical size of the U.S., but also a way to increase the economy with-in the U.S. The increase of trading between nations was one benefit of imperialism. Alfred T. Mahan published a popular book promoting a large navy in order to become a world power. Many Americans saw this idea as the way the nation needed to move forward. In response to this belief the U.S. built 2 new types of cruisers and expanded its military force.
This domineering foreign policy defined the politics of American Imperialism that was especially prevalent from 1890-1913. The United States’ influential powers came from a strong military and naval force. The naval force had been bolstered under Teddy Roosevelt when he was Assistant Secretary of the Navy. The American naval force saw rapid growth to become the 5th most powerful navy by 1898 and according to Captain Alfred Thayer Mahan’s The Influence of Sea Power upon History this strengthened navy was necessary as control of the seas was the key to world dominance and empire. The United States would get to showcase its naval prowess in defense of economic interests in Cuban sugar that was threatened by Spain’s Reconcentration from 1896-1898.