4Teddy Roosevelt and the France Double-Team Panama
Why He's Awesome:
Teddy Roosevelt is pretty much the manliest creature to have ever existed, all the more so because he didn't start out that way. Born with only two of the eight testicles that he would possess by the end of his life, Roosevelt spent his early childhood as an asthmatic nerd, but through a strict exercise regimen and sheer force of testostotastic will, he managed to grow up into one mean rough-riding, trust-busting son-of-a-bitch.
His presidency was defined mostly by battles against corruption, racism, general badassery, and teaming up with a French to rip off the entire country of Colombia.
Wait, What the Fuck?
So the United States wanted to build a canal in the province of Colombia called Panama. After some intense negotiations, a treaty between the two countries was signed, but Colombia's Senate rejected it and asked for $10 million more than what had been previously agreed upon.
That's where Philippe-Jean Bunau Varilla comes in. Varilla was a French lobbyist, and the proud owner of what scientists have determined to be the most ridiculously French name in history.
Varilla came to the White House and convinced Roosevelt that the best way to get around the Colombian Senate's obstinacy was to start fucking with Colombia's domestic politics in a big way. See, at the time, Panama was considering seceding from Colombia, and Roosevelt decided that in order to get what he wanted, he was going to have to become that country's anti-Lincoln and get some Panamanians civil-warring. When Panama officially announced that it's independence, Roosevelt sent the USS Nashville to block the Colombian navy from interfering. And thus an independent country was born.
Well, independent from Colombia, anyway. Varilla now wriggled his oily little mustache into becoming the newly independent Panama's ambassador to the US.
Two weeks after Roosevelt and some French guy stole Panama ... er, after Panama declared independence from Colombia, Varilla signed the Hay-Bunau Varilla treaty and sold the Panama Canal Zone to the United States without the permission of a single actual resident of Panama, none of whom ever trusted a man with a mustache again.
3FDR Abandons Poland
Why He's Awesome:
Franklin Delano Roosevelt was a lot like Professor X: sure he was in a wheelchair, but his brain could beat up your brain without breaking a sweat. He lost his legs as a young man, but didn't let that stop him from becoming the only president to ever serve more than two terms (he served four, thus making him twice as good as any other president).
As president, FDR had to deal with a double-threat unlike any other: he had to punch Hitler in the face with one hand and strangle the Great Depression with the other. Somehow, he did both, and made it look goddamned classy. Yessir, nothing was impossible for FDR, expect for averting the slaughter of thousands of Polish citizens.
"Wah! I'm surrounded by bats!" (FDR looks like The Penguin.)
Wait, What the Fuck?
Roosevelt formed powerful strategic alliances with various world leaders, including Churchill, Kai-Shek, and a mustachioed cossack named Stalin. And just to clarify, yes, that is the same Stalin who ended up killing more people than Hitler.
When it became clear that the Allied Forces were going to defeat Nazi Germany, these world leaders started talking about their post-war plans for Europe. Stalin's plans apparently included becoming the Magneto to FDR's Professor X, and he demanded that the borders of Poland be redrawn in such a way that he ended up controlling a good portion of it. Roosevelt smiled politely and shrugged.
It wasn't long before FDR totally lost control of the negotiations, and Stalin ended up sitting on much of Eastern Europe. Roosevelt hoped that more negotiations could salvage the situation, which is about as advisable as trying to gamble your way out of gambling debt. He must have had a funny idea of salvaging the situation, because out of his desperation to maintain a good relationship with a mass murderer, he did two very stupid things.
First, he refused Winston Churchill's suggestion that they aid Polish troops in their fight against the Soviet puppet government. Second, he actually suppressed a report that blamed the Katyn massacre (in which 22,000 Poles were murdered) on the Soviets.
"Dear Poland...Go fuck yourself. Love, America.
But on the plus side, FDR's show of good will towards the Soviet Union assured several decades of completely peaceful, tension-free friendship between the nations. Other than all the times we almost went to war and obliterated the planet.