This book provides a compact history of the gradual development of the US into a great power. Most histories of US foreign policy and development concentrate either on economic growth or on relations with the major powers outside the continental United States. This book, however, emphasizes the longstanding conflict between the US and the American Indians and Mexico, and how the development of the United States as a great power depended primarily on its seizure of large areas of land from their previous inhabitants. Covering Christopher Columbus' famous voyage and US colonial policy up to World War II, the book explains (at times controversially) how the US became a large land area, which proved to be an indispensable tool in its becoming a great power.

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