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The present work incorporates substantially the entire text, with few alterations or amendments, of the volume published by the author in 1905 under the title American Diplomacy: Its Spirit and Achievements. The narrative in that volume, however, embraces few incidents that occurred later than 1903. The years that have since elapsed have been marked by important events, some of which are destined to be highly influential in shaping the future course of the foreign policy of the United States. The present work brings the history of that policy down to date.
The object of the author in the preparation of the original work, as well as in its revision, has been to set forth and explain the fundamental principles by which the diplomacy of the United States has been governed. Domestic policy and foreign policy are seldom wholly diverse, and foreign policy is in the main profoundly influenced by local interests and ideals. Consequently, just as the internal development of each nation presents some distinctive phase or phases, so we may expect its foreign policy to bear distinctive marks by which it can be identified. The United States after its advent into the family of nations promptly satisfied that expectation. In grave and critical conjunctures its foreign policy became identified with certain definite principles, enunciated by the founders of the government, by whom its course was then guided. The promulgation of those principles formed an epoch in international relations; and as they were conceived to be congenial with the spirit of American institutions, and were found to be beneficent in their operation, they were afterwards preserved and developed with remarkable consistency and intelligence of purpose. Down to a comparatively recent time they were regarded as practically immutable.
Of these principles the first and foremost was that of “non-intervention." This term was used inclusively in a twofold sense. It embraced, in the first place, non-interference in the internal affairs of other nations. In this sense, while betokening the revolutionary origin of the government of the United States, it was also intended reciprocally to concede to other nations the right to determine their form of government and otherwise to manage their domestic concerns, each for itself and in its own way. In the second place, it embraced non-participation in the political arrangements between other governments, and above all strict abstention from any part in the political arrangements of Europe.
Of the principle of non-intervention the system of neutrality was a logical derivative, as was also the recognition of governments as existing entities, and not as legitimate or illegitimate, or as lawful or unlawful, under the local constitution. The Monroe Doctrine itself was but the correlative of the principle of non-participation in European affairs. "Our first and fundamental maxim,” said Jefferson, should be “never to entangle ourselves in the broils of Europe; our second, never to suffer Europe to intermeddle with cis-Atlantic affairs." By preserying these principles, it was believed that the United States would best contribute to the preservation of peace, abroad as well as at home, and to the spread of liberty throughout the world.
While the text of the present volume is not made up of a continuous recital of events in chronological order, yet that order is followed in the development of each principle; and all the essential or important incidents in the diplomacy of the United States are given. This method has commended itself to the author as a means of communicating to the reader and to the student something more than a dry detail of names, dates, and places. For the most part it is believed that the study of the past yields little beyond a certain familiarity with those elements, which are in themselves of little value. The element of real value is the motives, the thoughts and purposes by which events are inspired.
While an attempt is made in the text to describe and explain transactions with sufficient fullness to enable the reader readily to grasp their significance, there are added, at the end of each chapter, citations of sources in which the study of the subjects treated can be further pursued.
In view of the importance attached to the relations of the United States with the other countries of this hemisphere, a special chapter has been added to the present work, on the subject of Pan-Americanism. The idea of Pan-Americanism is obviously derived from the conception that there is such a thing as an American system; that this system is based upon distinctive interests which the American countries have in common; and that it is independent of and different from the European system. To the extent to which Europe should become implicated in American politics, or to which American countries should become implicated in European politics, this distinction would necessarily be broken down, and the foundations of the American system would be impaired; and to the extent to which the foundations of the American system were impaired, Pan-Americanism would lose its vitality and the Monroe Doctrine its accustomed and tangible meaning. I say this on the supposition that the Monroe Doctrine is, both geographically and politically, American, its object being to safeguard the Western Hemisphere against territorial and political control by nonAmerican powers. Of this limited application I would adduce as proof not so much the fact that the Monroe Doctrine, although conceived in terms of colonial emancipation, has not prevented the United States and other American governments from forcibly