Lead: Using the leverage of independence to win control of the Panama Canal zone, the United States took a century to give it back.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: After receiving tacit encouragement from President Theodore Roosevelt, French engineer Phillippe Bunau-Varilla, who life obsession was determined to see the Canal built, assured Amador Guerrero, the future President of Panama, that the U.S. would back his revolution against Colombia. The condition for such support was that the Americans have a free hand in the construction and operation of the Canal. In a room at the Waldorf Hotel in New York, on October 13, 1903 Bunau-Varilla offered $100,000 of his own money to grease the process. Amador went home and he and his allies set the revolution in motion. At that time Panama was part of Colombia which had rejected U.S. offers for the canal zone. Panamanians separated the officers of what few Colombian troops were in Panama and on November 6th, with little loss of life, the Republic of Panama was proclaimed.