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The Monroe Doctrine was a foreign policy proclaimed by the United States in 1823 during the presidency of President James Monroe. It said that European powers do not belong in The Americas. In particular, most of the Spanish Empire in South America had recently become independent, due to the wars against France. Having won the Peninsular War, Spain wanted its empire back, and the Monroe Doctrine said the United States would resist that. The United Kingdom agreed and helped enforce the Monroe Doctrine.