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Today's Stichomancy for H. G. Wells

The excerpt represents the core issue or deciding factor on which you must meditate, and is drawn from A Straight Deal by Owen Wister:

as a nation, Venezuela seldom conducted herself or her government on the steady plan of democracy. England was exasperated. And yet England yielded. It took a little time, but arbitration settled it in the end-- at about the same time that we flatly declined to arbitrate our quarrel with Spain. History will not acquit us of groundless meddling and arrogance in this matter, while England comes out of it having again shown in the end both forbearance and good manners. Before another Venezuelan incident in 1902,I take up a burning dispute of 1903.

As Oregon had formerly been, so Alaska had later become, a grave source of friction between England and ourselves. Canada claimed boundaries in Alaska which we disputed. This had smouldered along through a number of