Cuban Campaign: An Easy Win in the Spanish-American War
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American commanders initially anticipated a lengthy troop training period, but circumstances dictated a change in plans. A Spanish fleet sailed from Europe, causing near panic in the eastern seaboard cities of Boston and New York. In response to the perceived threat, a large portion of the American navy was committed to patrol duties along the North American coast. The Spanish managed to evade the porous American blockade of Cuba and enter Santiago harbor at the southeastern end of the island.
With Spain forcing the issue, the undertrained American soldiers were dispatched from Tampa. The initial aim was to prevent the Spanish forces at Santiago from coordinating actions with the bulk of their existing forces in the west.
General William R. Shafter led the American invasion in areas outside of Santiago in late June. Major military engagements included:
Spanish land forces in Santiago surrendered on July 17. An armistice was signed in August, setting up the framework for a final peace treaty that was signed in December.
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