To the men in the Wilson administration who ordered American troops to seize the Mexican port of Veracruz, the world appeared a very different place than we imagine :
"It was 1914, an Age was approaching an unsuspected and violent end. The comforting vision that had illuminated the Edwardian world was about to be lost in a darkness from which none other has emerged. One August dawn, [the lights would go out] across Europe, and afterwards it would be impossible for anything to be quite the same again. [..] At the time, there seemed no reason to fear that the most colossal accident in mankind’s experience was soon to occur." —The Landing at Veracruz: 1914
Cuba, Nicaragua, the Philippines and Haiti had been theaters of war in the years preceding the Veracruz expedition. Hawaii had been annexed and Puerto Rico and Guam seized. American interests had been upheld by force of arms in the Dominican Republic, Panama, Argentina, Chile, Korea and China by the generation of soldiers, sailors and marines who were called upon to intervene in the Mexican Revolution.