SAT Subject US History Practice Question 866: Answer and Explanation

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Question: 866

37. The phrase "Speak softly and carry a big stick," originally referred to

A. President Theodore Roosevelt's policy in regard to Latin America.
B. President John F. Kennedy's policy in regard to Vietnam.
C. President Andrew Jackson's policy in regard to Native American nations.
D. President George H. W. Bush's policy in regard to Saudi Arabia.
E. President Dwight D. Eisenhower's policy in regard to the Soviet Union.

Correct Answer: A


Although the description could apply to other presidents' actions, the phrase was coined by Theodore Roosevelt, who pursued an aggressive foreign policy in regard to Latin America. His "Roosevelt Corollary" to the Monroe Doctrine asserted America's right to intervene in Latin American nations' affairs. He was famous for this phrase. The other presidents pursued aggressive policies but did not use Roosevelt's language.

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