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British Policy Towards Latin America during World War II: Resisting the (Pan-)American Century

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This chapter explores British policy towards Latin America during the Second World War. More specifically, it depicts British efforts to resist the expansion of US political and economic power in the region. In so doing, it challenges existing portrayals of Britain as having largely abandoned its interests in Lain America by the 1940s. Instead, it argues that the British government still maintained important interests in Latin America at the outbreak of World War II. Moreover, it made serious, if ultimately unsuccessful, efforts to defend these interests against encroachment by the United States. As a result, Anglo-American relations during World War II were characterised largely by rivalry over their competing economic interests, notwithstanding cooperation on limited areas of joint strategic and political concern.