Foreign Policy Research Institute A Nation Must Think Before it Acts Theodore Roosevelt and American Realism
Theodore Roosevelt and American Realism

Theodore Roosevelt and American Realism

Abstract

Theodore Roosevelt’s foreign policy as president was animated by a desire to see the United States play a leading role in world affairs. He utilized skillful diplomacy, energetic executive action, and credible naval capabilities to support this forward role, while avoiding strategic overextension. In Latin America, Roosevelt looked to forestall European intervention and secure U.S. predominance. In Europe and East Asia, he sought to promote regional balances of power, while working under strict constraints imposed by Congress and U.S. public opinion. In the end, Roosevelt navigated these constraints as well as international events with considerable success. His presidential tenure is a good example of American foreign policy realism in action.

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