Why don't we have an American anime

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Applet
I can't exactly answer that myself, but your question should already be answered in the first section on Wikipedia.
Nils Huber
"Avatar - the last airbender" is a fantasy cartoon series from the USA. In terms of style, it has influences from anime, but it is an animated series. This sets it apart from other American cartoon series. Animated flimes produced in Japan are referred to as anime. However, there are also animes that do not necessarily have to come from Japan.
DomPet
"Avatar - The Last Airbender" is a fantasy cartoon series. The series takes place in a fictional world and is thematically strongly based on East Asia. Stylistically, the series is based on the Japanese anime and is therefore not a typical US series. However, Avatar is not a full anime, just an animated series with anime influences.
sheep20
Avatar Ang is set in a fictional world that is based on East Asia.
The series is style-wise influenced by Japanese anime and stands out
this is very different from the usual anime and US cartoon series, but
is definitely still to be regarded as an anime.
Avatar Ang is, to put it briefly, anime in its own style.