Mexican American War

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Carolina Valenzuela

HIST 109

Dr. Dell

December 01, 2010

Why I call myself Mexican- American

Since independence in 1821, Mexico has tried over and over with repeated failures to build a government system according to the needs of the country. By 1846 Mexico had gone through some of the most diverse forms: constitutional monarchy, federal republic, central republic and dictatorship. Still none had succeeded in establishing a strong government, capable of overcoming the struggles of political structure. The tremendous crisis of the national economy was undermining decade’s development opportunities.  The war against the United States in 1846 revealed that, after twenty years of independence, Mexico was still fragile and weak country. However, the internal weakness must also be added the harassment of various foreign imperialist forces that saw the country as an area of opportunity to expand his power. Such was the case with the United States. Therefore we can say that the armed confrontation between the two nations was the result of two factors; first the expansionism and the U.S ambitions.

Although the United States sometimes used violent means to take over the territories of others. Texas’s territory, which once served as a pretext for the start of the war was not only the ambitious of the United States. The opportunism of the Mexican authorities also played a role. Aware of the difficulty of populating the territory so far, the Mexican government decided to sell their land to American settlers. One part of land that the U.S wanted to acquire was Texas; which the name was the only Mexican root, since most of the population living there was born in the United States and its customs, language and religion, were similar to those professed by most people in this country. In that sense, it was understandable that their needs and interests were above the benefit and protection of the Mexican nation.

Among the Texans there was a great displeasure with the government of Mexico. They were unhappy with the fact that the capital of the province to which they belonged was far and this complicated any action that we wanted to accomplish. In contrast, Mexico was upset that the army was made up of convicted criminals who had swapped his time in prison for serving in the armed forces. The government would require them to convert to Catholicism, which was against their will. These and other reasons were behind the intention to secede from Mexico.

  For its part, the U.S. had several times tried to buy the Texas territory, but their offers were rejected. Therefore, in the Mexican government's reluctance to listen to their requests and the inability to join the neighboring country, the Texans decided to take arms. In 1836, after an unsuccessful military campaign of Mexican President Antonio Lopez de Santa Ana to subdue the colonists, Texas won its independence from Mexico. Some years later it gains annexation to the United States, which led to the outbreak of hostiles between both nations.

The war increased to an unprecedented way the territory of the United States, and in turn helped to aggravate the nations which later led to the War Civil. James K. Polk, who had been elected as the eleventh President of the United States in 1844, promised during his campaign, in an atmosphere of expectation expansionism, acquiring new land to launch the nation into new and provocative challenges. He wanted to keep its promises; therefore he soon recovered Oregon from the British, and negotiated the purchase of California and other Mexican territories. The President of Mexico, Mariano Paredes, rejected the U.S. offer, as expected. Furious, enough with the annexation of Texas in 1845, and attempts to reach the Rio Grande border, declared a state of war "defensive" on April 23, 1846. It was only the beginning of an escalation of tension and minor skirmishes. When the riots hit the newly acquired Texas, Polk asked Congress for...
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