Quiz about Oh No  The Bananas are Under Attack
Quiz about Oh No  The Bananas are Under Attack

Oh No! The Bananas are Under Attack! Quiz


The Banana Wars began around the turn of the twentieth century and were caused by American intervention in Central American economic systems. This quiz gives a brief overview of that time period.

A multiple-choice quiz by adams627. Estimated time: 6 mins.
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Author
adams627
Time
6 mins
Type
Multiple Choice
Quiz #
329,024
Updated
Dec 03 21
# Qns
10
Difficulty
Average
Avg Score
8 / 10
Plays
2097
Awards
Editor's Choice
Last 3 plays: Guest 107 (9/10), Guest 69 (9/10), Guest 188 (2/10).
This quiz has 2 formats: you can play it as a or as shown below.
Scroll down to the bottom for the answer key.
1. The Banana Wars began around the year 1898, when the United States first established itself as a world power, by defeating which nation in a brief but decisive war? Hint

France
Canada
Mexico
Spain

2. History had shown that the United States concerned itself with the affairs of Central American and Caribbean politics strongly; for example, James Monroe issued a famous doctrine stating that any effort by a European power to colonize the Americas would be considered an act of aggression by the US. Which president issued a namesake "corollary" to the Monroe Doctrine in 1904? Hint

Theodore Roosevelt
Calvin Coolidge
William McKinley
Woodrow Wilson

3. One of the earliest countries occupied during the United States as a part of the Banana Wars was Cuba, which had come under American rule after the Treaty of Paris of 1898 and the 1899 Teller Amendment. In 1901, the Platt Amendment was passed, guaranteeing American influence in all spheres of government. It also sold which Cuban geographical landmark to the American government? Hint

Varadero
Pinar del Rio
Guantanamo Bay
Isla de Juventud

4. The United States intervention in Panama in 1856 led not to the Banana Wars, but instead to the Watermelon War, an uprising that granted the Americans several territories along the Panamanian isthmus. By 1903, Panama was ready for autonomy, and with the help of the United States, declared its separation during the Thousand Days' War. Which South American country was Panama a part of at the time? Hint

Brazil
Venezuela
Colombia
Peru

5. Because Central American countries were so heavily dependent on agriculture, a new derogatory term for the struggling independent nations was coined by American short story writer, William Sydney Porter (better known by his pen-name, O'Henry). What phrase did Porter use to describe the nation of Honduras while he was hiding there in the late 1800s? Hint

Absurdistan
Kangaroo court
Kleptocracy
Banana republic

6. The First and Second Caco Wars were important aspects of the Banana Wars fought in a country occupied by the US between 1915 and 1934. American occupation improved education systems and living conditions, and also rebuilt the infrastructure (which sadly wasn't strong enough to withstand a brutal 2010 natural disaster). In which Caribbean country did the American system replace a French-influenced society?

Answer: (One Word)
7. The presidency of William Howard Taft in 1909 began a new theory of economic intervention in the Americas. The United States would secure the economic well-being of northern Latin America by buying off foreign countries' debts to European countries and guaranteeing that all foreign investments were made to the US. What two-word term was given to Taft's economic policy? Hint

Cash and guns
Money laundering
Dollar diplomacy
Loan remodification

8. Formed in 1899, this company became a major player in United States Central American politics in the early 1900s when it monopolized local produce businesses and gained a stranglehold on national economies. Most famously, this American corporation took control of Guatemala's postal service and became the largest employer in Central America. What was this economic giant specializing in tropical produce, well-known in Latin America as "el pulpo"? Hint

United Fruit Company
Chiquita Brands International
Dole Food Company
Boston Fruit Company

9. In 1912, the United States invaded Nicaragua and maintained control over the country for more than 20 years. One man that it captured became a hero in Latin America in the movement against American imperialism, and his name was used by the FSLN when they lodged a coup against the Nicaraguan government in 1979. Who was he? Hint

Jose Maria Moncada
Juan Bautista Sacasa
Augusto Cesar Sandino
Anastasio Somoza Garcia

10. The Banana Wars finally ended around 1934, when then-president Franklin D. Roosevelt announced his new plan for Latin America, which, according to a December 1933 speech, was "opposed to armed intervention." What name was given to FDR's new plan, a name which was borrowed by the Church of the Latter-day Saints around the same time? Hint

Pan-Americanism
Anti-interventionism
Good Neighbor Policy
Allied But Independent Movement


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Quiz Answer Key and Fun Facts
1. The Banana Wars began around the year 1898, when the United States first established itself as a world power, by defeating which nation in a brief but decisive war?

Answer: Spain

The Spanish-American War is interesting for its short duration: John Hay famously called it "a splendid little war." By 1898, Spanish naval strength had far diminished since the empire's height during the exploration of the Americas; on the other hand, American military strength was starting to become evident. The United States hadn't yet tried to imperialize Latin America or anywhere else in the world, even though countries like France, the UK, and Germany had developed vast empires in Africa and Southeast Asia. Spain's empire was mostly limited to territories in Latin America like Cuba, and the Cubans wanted independence badly. Revolutionaries, especially famed poet Jose Marti, continued to fight from exile for Cuba's independence. Spain put down the revolts harshly. American resentment for the Spanish grew, especially with William Randolph Hearst's "yellow journalism." When the USS Maine, an American ship docked in Havana, exploded on February 15, 1898, United States citizens clamored for war, even though no definitive evidence of Spanish involvement was reached.

The war was incredibly swift. The US took control of fronts in the Philippines and in Cuba, where Theodore Roosevelt made fame for himself by leading the so-called Rough Riders. A peace treaty was signed less than a year later in Paris, giving the United States control of many Spanish territories, including Guam and Puerto Rico.
2. History had shown that the United States concerned itself with the affairs of Central American and Caribbean politics strongly; for example, James Monroe issued a famous doctrine stating that any effort by a European power to colonize the Americas would be considered an act of aggression by the US. Which president issued a namesake "corollary" to the Monroe Doctrine in 1904?

Answer: Theodore Roosevelt

The Monroe Doctrine was released on December 2, 1823, by then-president James Monroe. It stated that any act of imperialism by European countries in Latin America would be met by war led by the fledgling nation. In response, the United States pledged not to interfere in European internal affairs.

After the American Civil War, the US looked less likely to stop foreign invasion and more likely to begin its own economic domination. Stopping short of political imperialism, the United States began to intervene in the entire economic system of North America (save Canada). Beginning with Secretary of State and presidential hopeful James G. Blaine's "Big Sister" plan, which planned to open up Central America to trade, the Banana Wars were an economic initiative designed to exert influence upon the rest of the Western Hemisphere. The Roosevelt Corollary to the Monroe Doctrine controversially stated the United States had the right to intervene in Latin America if a country was suffered political or economic instability.
3. One of the earliest countries occupied during the United States as a part of the Banana Wars was Cuba, which had come under American rule after the Treaty of Paris of 1898 and the 1899 Teller Amendment. In 1901, the Platt Amendment was passed, guaranteeing American influence in all spheres of government. It also sold which Cuban geographical landmark to the American government?

Answer: Guantanamo Bay

Spain lost control of Cuba in 1898 after the Spanish-American War, and the island was soon controlled by the United States through the Teller Amendment in 1899. According to the Teller Amendment, the United States couldn't definitively annex Cuba, allowing the Cuban people to self-govern. Two years later, though, the Teller Amendment was discontinued when Roosevelt's Secretary of War Elihu Root thought up the new Platt Amendment.

The amendment allowed only the United States to gain control of Cuban territory, prevented Cuba from making foreign loans, and allowed the American military to intervene in the country whenever necessary.

Other stipulations were that the island had to sell coaling stations to the United States, and that the southeastern bay of the country, located in the province of Guantanamo, would be leased to the Americans.

The Platt Amendment was worked into the Cuban constitution until it was repealed in 1934.
4. The United States intervention in Panama in 1856 led not to the Banana Wars, but instead to the Watermelon War, an uprising that granted the Americans several territories along the Panamanian isthmus. By 1903, Panama was ready for autonomy, and with the help of the United States, declared its separation during the Thousand Days' War. Which South American country was Panama a part of at the time?

Answer: Colombia

The Thousand Days' War was an incredibly bloody Colombian civil war that began in 1899 and lasted until 1902. It was famously depicted in Gabriel Garcia Marquez's novel "One Hundred Years of Solitude," in which Colonel Aureliano Buendia fights for decades before coming home to Macondo, broken. In the midst of the war, Panama declared its severance from Colombia in November 1903. The United States supported Panama's autonomy and wanted to protect its own interests in a Panama Canal; with American naval support, the Central American country gained separation and granted the US a Panama Canal Zone through the Hay-Bunau-Varilla Treaty.

During the Banana Wars, there was little fighting between Panama and the United States, but tensions escalated as the century progressed. On January 9, 1964, riots in the country about the Canal Zone were influential in Jimmy Carter's transfer of the Canal to Panama in 1977.
5. Because Central American countries were so heavily dependent on agriculture, a new derogatory term for the struggling independent nations was coined by American short story writer, William Sydney Porter (better known by his pen-name, O'Henry). What phrase did Porter use to describe the nation of Honduras while he was hiding there in the late 1800s?

Answer: Banana republic

O'Henry coined the term "banana republic" in his 1904 collection "Cabbages and Kings," which was based on his own stay in Honduras from 1896 to 1897 while fleeing the American government for embezzlement. Banana plantations flourished in the early twentieth century in Central America, particularly in Honduras; they were often controlled by American businessmen seeking food for laborers while they built railroads across the isthmus.

The popularity of the banana also exploded around the United States.

In a banana republic, a government favors certain monopolies for fruit plantations. While the profits are earned by the companies, the entire population pays for the debts incurred. The danger in a banana republic is that the economy is based solely on a single product, so the entire nation is subject to volatile market swings and seasonal weather patterns. Also, corrupt government officials earn their posts economically, so actual electorates have little power at all.
6. The First and Second Caco Wars were important aspects of the Banana Wars fought in a country occupied by the US between 1915 and 1934. American occupation improved education systems and living conditions, and also rebuilt the infrastructure (which sadly wasn't strong enough to withstand a brutal 2010 natural disaster). In which Caribbean country did the American system replace a French-influenced society?

Answer: Haiti

On July 28, 1915, with World War I raging in Europe, US Marines invaded not Germany or France, but Haiti. Haiti's government had been mercurial for the last four years, as small guerrilla groups called cacos, paid for by rival politicians, wreaked havoc. In 1915, Haitian president Jean Vilbrun Guillaume Sam killed 167 prisoners and, in turn, was killed by an angry mob in Port-au-Prince. The US supported Sam and opposed the cacos' anti-American leader, so Woodrow Wilson had the military invade the small island country. The Americans took control of the Haitian banks to repay loans to both American and French banks.

The US controlled Haiti for the next 19 years, despite pressure from European countries at the 1919 Paris Peace Conference. The Americans attempted to implement large-scale commercial agriculture in Haiti, like the sugarcane plantations on neighboring Cuba, but the plan failed. The new infrastructure programs for roads and bridges, as well as availability of drinking water and education, were far more successful. In 1934, American occupation ended. By 2010, Haiti was one of the poorest countries in the Western Hemisphere, and it tragically was hit by a devastating earthquake that killed more than 200,000 people.
7. The presidency of William Howard Taft in 1909 began a new theory of economic intervention in the Americas. The United States would secure the economic well-being of northern Latin America by buying off foreign countries' debts to European countries and guaranteeing that all foreign investments were made to the US. What two-word term was given to Taft's economic policy?

Answer: Dollar diplomacy

Taft's idea of dollar diplomacy was used throughout Latin America and also in Liberia, which had strong American influences since it was founded by freed slaves in 1847. The president expanded Roosevelt's ideas of the Monroe Doctrine, making his case by pointing to American interests in the Panama Canal. Taft believed that through diplomacy, the United States could promote its own economic commercial enterprises. Dollar diplomacy meant that, in the interest of stability, American companies should use force to promote their business abroad. Taft's Secretary of State, Philander Knox, was the promoter of this strategy, encouraging Latin America especially to invest heavily in the United States. Through dollar diplomacy, the US could improve its own financial status while preventing Europe from taking control in the Western Hemisphere.
8. Formed in 1899, this company became a major player in United States Central American politics in the early 1900s when it monopolized local produce businesses and gained a stranglehold on national economies. Most famously, this American corporation took control of Guatemala's postal service and became the largest employer in Central America. What was this economic giant specializing in tropical produce, well-known in Latin America as "el pulpo"?

Answer: United Fruit Company

The United Fruit Company (UFC) was formed in 1899 after the Boston Fruit Company merged with a group of banana plantations created by railroad man Minor Cooper Keith. The UFC was the company primarily responsible for the banana republics and for the corrupt business practices in the area. Strongest in Guatemala and Honduras, United Fruit earned money from the production of bananas, which was incredibly popular and cheap. It also gained political power, too. Following the example of earlier filibusterers like William Walker (who, in the middle of the century, had sought to become "emperors" of weak Central American nations), the UFC quickly dominated the transportation and communication systems. It managed Guatemala's postal service and made 215 million dollars in less than 15 years of operation.

The UFC became United Brands and then Chiquita after the Banana Wars ended. It was vehemently attacked by Latin American politicians and authors. Pablo Neruda of Chile and Miguel Asturias of Guatemala were particularly ardent critics of the company, called "el pulpo," or the octopus. Asturias' "Banana Trilogy" is perhaps the most famous literary criticism of the UFC.
9. In 1912, the United States invaded Nicaragua and maintained control over the country for more than 20 years. One man that it captured became a hero in Latin America in the movement against American imperialism, and his name was used by the FSLN when they lodged a coup against the Nicaraguan government in 1979. Who was he?

Answer: Augusto Cesar Sandino

Nicaraguan politics at the dawn of the twentieth century were complicated. The country was led by Jose Santos Zelaya, but the US backed a coup against the president, led by Juan Jose Estrada. Once Estrada took control, the US successfully instituted dollar diplomacy in the region. Estrada's successor, Adolfo Diaz, was far less popular in Nicaragua, which was frustrated by American economic imperialism. Luis Mena led a revolution against Diaz. The Nicaraguan president called in American support for him to keep his office, and Marines invaded the country in 1912. The joint American-Diaz forces managed to quell the rebellion, but the US military remained until 1933.

One man opposed to the Americans in Nicaragua was Augusto Cesar Sandino, who led a guerrilla war against American forces. Labeled a bandit by the US, Sandino avoided capture by the Americans but was assassinated by Anastasio Somoza Garcia, who took power in 1936. Later, the Sandinistas of Nicaragua would invoke Sandino's name in their overthrow of Somoza in 1979. The extremely left-wing Sandinistas would gain fame around the world for their civil war against the Contras, marred by controversy for the Reagan administration.
10. The Banana Wars finally ended around 1934, when then-president Franklin D. Roosevelt announced his new plan for Latin America, which, according to a December 1933 speech, was "opposed to armed intervention." What name was given to FDR's new plan, a name which was borrowed by the Church of the Latter-day Saints around the same time?

Answer: Good Neighbor Policy

Franklin D. Roosevelt ended the Banana Wars that had essentially been started by his distant relative Theodore. The Good Neighbor policy was a way to limit anti-American sentiment in Latin America by stopping political and economic intervention in Central America and the Caribbean. Roosevelt instead supported Pan-Americanism, a movement designed to increase cooperation among Western Hemisphere nations.

By the 30s, isolationism due to the Great Depression had begun to sink in, and few Americans were in favor of the economic imperialist practices of years past. Unfortunately for the US, the sudden neglect of political affairs in Latin America ushered in an age of socialism for many countries in the region after World War II.
Source: Author adams627

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