On April 21, 1898, the United States of America declared war on the Spanish Empire. However, there were only two urgent grounds for going to war: America’s backing for the continuous fight by Cuban and Filipino people against Spanish control and the mystery explosion that occurred in Havana Harbor aboard the battleship USS Maine, which sparked the conflict.
Despite the fact that the United States did not have any foreign colonies to defend, corporate and government leaders recognized that a powerful navy was necessary to secure commerce and the country’s expanding international interests. Cuba was under attack by revolutionaries striving for independence from Spain, and the Maine was dispatched to the island to safeguard American people there.
After the inexplicable sinking of the United States battleship Maine in Havana port on February 15, 1898, it appeared increasingly apparent that the United States would intervene militarily in the country. The Spanish government rejected the United States’ ultimatum and severing diplomatic ties with the United States took effect immediately.
The origins of the Spanish-American War
Despite the fact that the United States agreed not to invade Cuba after winning the war, it did expect Cuba to allow extensive American participation in Cuban affairs after winning the war. As a consequence of the conflict, the United States gained control of the territories of Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Philippine Islands.
During Cuba’s war for independence, the United States kept a close eye on the situation. The United States had millions of dollars in investments in Cuban firms, and there were a large number of American residents living in the country. The United States also conducted business with Cuba.
Dissatisfied with the corrupt and inefficient Spanish administration, a lack of political representation, and high taxes, Cubans in the eastern provinces banded together under the leadership of wealthy planter Carlos Manuel de Céspedes, whose declaration of independence in October 1868, known as the Grito de Yara (“Cry of Yara”), signaled the beginning of the country’s independence from the United States.
Following the sinking of the Battleship Maine in Havana port on February 15, 1898, the United States of America declared war on Spain in the year 1898.
At the end of the nineteenth century, the strategic importance of Puerto Rico for the United States was based on economic and military concerns. The island was valuable to policymakers in the United States because it served as an outlet for excess produced products and as a significant naval post in the Caribbean.