By Steven High (auth.)
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Extra info for Base Colonies in the Western Hemisphere, 1940–1967
Once again I turn to the pages of the New York Times for an answer: The comparison had some point. In 1803, as today, the United States felt itself threatened by a European conqueror. President Thomas Jefferson, after hearing that Napoleon had forced Spain to concede to France the vast but undefined region of Louisiana, with its control of the economically important mouth of the Mississippi, wrote to the American Minister in Paris: “The day that France takes possession of new Orleans . . seals the union of the two nations who in conjunction can maintain exclusive possession of the ocean.
The location of the army garrison was a matter of some negotiation. The United States intended to station one reinforced infantry battalion of 2,200 men somewhere on the Avalon Peninsula. Greenslade indicated that he remained open-minded as to where this base would be located, only requiring T H E U N I T E D S TAT E S & H E M I S P H E R I C D E F E N S E 33 that it had to be on the railway line and have its own harbor. The Board debated whether to place the entire battalion of troops on the outskirts of St.
The Board therefore recommended a string of army and navy bases anchored by Newfoundland in the north, Bermuda in the mid-Atlantic, and Trinidad in the south. All three sites would have naval operating bases, the latter two equipped to support carriers, patrol aircraft, cruisers, destroyers, anti-submarine forces, and submarines. The other base locations, which constituted a string of land and sea plane bases, would be T H E U N I T E D S TAT E S & H E M I S P H E R I C D E F E N S E 31 used to patrol the vital Caribbean sea lanes that brought British Guianan bauxite as well as Venezuelan and Trinidadian oil to the United States and Great Britain.