How did jingoism contribute to the outbreak of the Spanish American War?
Jingoism is defined as extreme patriotism, especially in the form of warlike foreign policy. This jingoism, affected by anti-Spanish propaganda, instigated agitation against the Spanish people by the Americans, eventually leading into the war in 1898.
Yellow journalism and jingoism influenced AmericansÕ views of the Cuban rebellion against the Spanish Empire by portraying the Spanish as a backward empire amongst other very negative things. Public opinion regarding American intervention grew to such a fervor as to compare to the Cuban rebellion to the American Revolution and forced Congress and President William McKinley to take action.
During the Spanish-American War, the US attacked Spanish forces in the Philippines, and elsewhere, because the US and Spain were at war. The US Navy attacked the Spanish fleet in manila Bay because Assistant Secretary of the Navey Theodore Roosevelt had orderd the fleet to do that as soon as they learned of the outbreak of war with Spain.
The explosion of USS Maine triggered a raise of rage against Spain in the American public opinion, alimented by inflammatory articles of the "Yellow Press", written by Joseph Pulitzer and William Randolph Hearst, which led the US Government to come at loggerheads with the Spanish Government and declare war on Spain, though no proof of guilty against a Spanish involvement in that event had been found.
The independence movement in Cuba did not succeed in quickly defeating the Spanish army. The prolonged conflict especially harmed US firms importing sugar from Cuba. These firms strongly lobbied in Washington and finally succeeded in making president McKinley decide to take an interest and finally declare war on Spain.