In 1905 President Teddy
Roosevelt dispatched Secretary of War William Howard Taft on the largest US diplomatic mission in history to Hawaii, Japan, the Philippines, China, and
Korea. Roosevelt’s glamorous twenty-one year old daughter Alice served as
mistress of the cruise, which included senators and congressmen. On this trip,
Taft concluded secret agreements in Roosevelt’s name.
In 2005, a century later,
James Bradley traveled in the wake of Roosevelt’s mission and discovered what
had transpired in Honolulu, Tokyo, Manila, Beijing, and Seoul.
In 1905, Roosevelt was confident and made secret agreements that he would secure America’s westward
push into the Pacific. Instead, he lit the long fuse on the Asian firecrackers
that would singe America’s hands for a century.
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