Collier's New Encyclopedia (1921)/Monroe Doctrine

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MONROE DOCTRINE, a policy of the United States, first definitely announced by President James Monroe, in his annual message to Congress, 1823, which contained the following sentences: “We owe it to candor and to the amicable relations existing between the United States and the allied powers, to declare that we should consider any attempt on their part to extend their system to any portion of this hemisphere as dangerous to our peace and safety. With the existing colonies or dependencies of any European power we have not interfered, and shall not interfere; but with the governments which have declared their independence and maintained it, and whose independence we have on great consideration and just principles, acknowledged, we could not view an interposition for oppressing them, or controlling in any other manner their destiny, by any European power, in any other light than as a manifestation of an unfriendly disposition toward the United States.” Also, “The American continents should no longer be subjects for any new European colonial settlement.” President Monroe's mention of these subjects was occasioned by the formation in Europe, a few years previously, of what was called the “holy alliance” between Russia, France, Austria, and Prussia to maintain the monarchical system of government in Europe. It was supposed that they desired to extend their operations to the New World also, especially with reference to the colonies of Spain. The Monroe Doctrine was an issue in the discussion of the League of Nations Covenant, and the reservations to the Treaty passed in the Senate in 1919 specifically provided that the Doctrine should not be abrogated.