Can’t decide if the United States’ invasion of Mexico was justifiable or not? It might be difficult to come to a conclusion. In the nineteenth century, Mexico achieved independence from Spain. Central America was ruled by Spain. Because of the enormous territorial extension with such a small population, Mexico relaxed its immigration rules, allowing American settlers to assist develop the northern regions.
Mexico also had many other problems during this time, such as financial instability and political turmoil. The United States had been steadily growing since winning its independence from Great Britain in the eighteenth century. American settlers were pushing westward in pursuit of new land and opportunities.
At the same time, Mexico was losing control of its northern territories. In 1836, American settlers in Texas revolted against Mexico and declared themselves an independent republic. Mexico sent troops to put down the rebellion, but the Americans defeated them at the Battle of San Jacinto in 1836.
Mexico is a nation that can’t even take care of the land they have, so how would they be able to protect Texas from American expansion? Mexico has been known for their rebellions; (Doc B) Mexico revolted against Spain and won. Mexico was trying to show that they could stand up for themselves, but if Mexico can barely handle their own country then how will they be able to protect Texas?
This evidence concludes that Mexico cannot take care of themselves, let alone another nation. Lastly, America offered Mexico $30 million dollars for California and New Mexico, but Mexico refused. (Doc C) Mexico already lost California because they couldn’t control it, and now America is generously giving them money for it.
Mexico is extremely prideful, and they would rather keep the little bit of land they have left then to sell it for a high price. Mexico is struggling, and America is trying to help them out, but Mexico refuses the offer.
A war erupted between the United States and Mexico in 1846, over territories which both claimed. One of the most contentious events of the 19th century was the Mexican-American War. Both countries maintained that the other was responsible for starting the conflict. The Mexicans may have had their reasons for believing so; however, the Americans were equally correct if not more justified in going to battle with Mexico.
Mexico had long been a nation in conflict. Prior to the war with America, Mexico was in the midst of a civil war. Mexico’s political instability made it an easy target for American expansionism. The Americans saw an opportunity to take advantage of Mexico’s weakness and decided to annex Texas, which was Mexican territory at the time.
Mexico warned the Americans that such an action would be seen as an act of aggression and could lead to war. The Americans did not heed Mexico’s warnings and annexed Texas anyway. This was one of the primary reasons why the Mexicans believed that the Americans were to blame for causing the war.
The Mexicans were not without fault though; they had also been aggressive towards the Americans prior to the war. Mexico had been trying to stop American expansion into their territory for years. They succeeded in halting American expansion in the early 1800s; however, they were unable to do so in the 1840s.
The Mexicans made it clear to the Americans that they were not welcome in Mexico and that any attempt to expand into Mexican territory would be met with force. In 1846, the Mexicans took matters into their own hands and attacked an American army unit that was stationed in disputed territory between the two nations. The Americans responded by declaring war on Mexico.
Both sides had valid reasons for going to war with each other. The Mexicans were justified in their belief that the Americans were aggressors who were attempting to take advantage of Mexico’s weakness. The Americans were also justified in their belief that the Mexicans were aggressors who were attempting to stop American expansion. Ultimately, the war was caused by the actions of both nations.
One of the most crucial disputes that prompted people to want war was a disagreement over where Mexico and Texas’ legitimate border should be. The Mexicans considered the Nueces River to be the right line, while Americans wanted the Rio Grande to be the border between Texas and Mexico. Not only did Mexico own Texas, but it also claimed all the way up to Oregon territory.
Mexico was a threat to the Americans because if Mexico were to ever get their hands on that land, it would be very difficult for the Americans to travel west. Mexico also had control over California and its ports, which again made it hard for Americans to travel west. Mexico’s power and grip over these territories was a large concern for America, which is one of the reasons why many supported going to war with Mexico.
Another large conflict that led to war intentions was slavery. At this time, Mexico had banned slavery while America still allowed it. So when Americans started migrating into Mexico, they brought their slaves with them. This created tension between the two countries because Mexico did not want slavery in their territory and the Americans did not want to give up their slaves. This disagreement on slavery was a large factor in the Mexico-American war.
The last main conflict that led to war was Mexico’s refusal to recognize the Republic of Texas. Mexico considered Texas a part of their country and when Texas declared themselves as an independent republic, Mexico did not take kindly to this. Mexico saw this as a threat to their power and their land and it further heightened tensions between the two countries.
All of these conflicts ultimately led to war between Mexico and America. The Americans thought that going to war with Mexico was justified because of Mexico’s power and control over many important territories, their disagreement on slavery, and their refusal to recognize the Republic of Texas. These were all valid reasons for the Americans to go to war with Mexico.
Why were the Spanish there in Mexico in the first place? Diego Velasquez, a wealthy governor of Cuba, sent Hernan Cortes to Mexico as governor. Velasquez charged Cortes with the responsibility of representing the Spanish crown and conducting trade with the indigenous people he would encounter. Obviously, Cortes had another agenda. Whether he planned his scheme for settlement of areas he would explore when he took up office from Velasquez or if it evolved over time is debatable and unimportant.
What is certain is that Cortes arrived in Mexico with the intent of starting his own colony. The Spanish conquistador had grandiose plans for himself, which included becoming exceedingly wealthy and powerful. The fact that he was willing to go against Velasquez’s orders, as well as the Spanish crown, illustrates the lengths he was willing to go to achieve his goals (Díaz).
Cortes first landed on the Yucatan Peninsula where he encountered little resistance from the Maya people. He then made his way inland and arrived at Mexico’s Gulf Coast. There he met with representatives of the Aztec people, who were the dominant force in Mexico at the time. The Aztecs told Cortes that he needed to speak with their emperor, Moctezuma II, if he wanted to trade with them. Cortes took this opportunity to request an audience with the emperor, even though he had no intention of conducting trade (Díaz).
Once Cortes arrived in the Aztec capital, Tenochtitlan, he was greeted with grandiose ceremony befitting an honored guest. The Aztecs believed that Cortes was the reincarnation of one of their gods, Quetzalcoatl. Moctezuma II welcomed Cortes into his palace and treated him as an honored dignitary. Cortes took advantage of this hospitality and used it to his advantage (Díaz).
While Cortes was being feted by the Aztecs, he was also busy making plans to overthrow them. He quickly realized that the Aztec empire was ripe for the taking. The indigenous people were tired of being ruled by the oppressive and demanding Aztecs. Cortes was able to find allies among the other indigenous tribes who were eager to be free of Aztec rule. With their help, Cortes was able to capture Moctezuma II and take control of Tenochtitlan (Díaz).
Cortes’s actions created a tense situation between Spain and Mexico. The Spanish crown was not happy about Cortes’s blatant disregard for authority. They saw him as a renegade who needed to be dealt with.