Brazil began its life as a formally sovereign and independent nation in an international system in which Britain was hegemonic. In the bipolar world of the early postwar years, the superpower position of the United States left Brazil with little room for even limited independence—a fact brought home by repeated heavy-handed US arm-twisting. Despite the era of cooperation that extended through World War II, the unwritten alliance proved to be a far from permanent feature of US-Brazilian relations. Entry into the war brought concessions by the United States on military hardware and economic assistance. This aid along with German torpedoing of Brazilian ships beginning in March 1942 led to Brazil's declaration of war in August. In contrast to the relative deterioration in Brazil's relationship with the United States, relations with other Latin American nations have improved markedly. The chapter also presents some closing thoughts on the key concepts discussed in the preceding chapters of this book.