The Bryan-Chamorro Treaty between Nicaragua and the United States was ratified. In exchange for three million dollars, Nicaragua granted the US exclusive rights to build a canal and naval base in that country.
The debate over America’s global role intensified when Cubans began to fight for their independence from Spain in 1895. Americans were sympathetic to Cuba’s struggle for independence, but were divided about how to help. President William McKinley was deeply ambivalent about war against Spain. Ultimately, however, the pressure of public opinion forced McKinley into the war that made the United States an international power. Newspaper publishers like William Randolph Hearst and Joseph Pulitzer worked up war fever among the public with reports...
In office, Grover Cleveland had pleased conservatives by advocating sound money and reduction of inflation, curbing party patronage, and vetoing government pensions. But he alienated business and labor interests by proposing a lower tariff and was defeated in the presidential race of 1888—winning the popular vote but losing the electoral vote to Republican Benjamin Harrison.
After an insurgency in Cuba, in which Cubans supported by American sympathizers protested Spanish rule, Spain implemented its “Reconcentration” policy, which forcibly sent thousands of Cubans to concentration camps.
Alfred Thayer Mahan, a Navy officer and historian, published The Influence of Sea Power upon History. Mahan’s book advocated expanding the Navy and creating an American-controlled canal through Central America.