America’s Forgotten War with Mexico

Hits: 7337

America’s war of expansion over Mexico, backed by newspapers and politicians, has repercussions to the present day.

Reflecting on his life while dying of throat cancer in 1885, the former US President Ulysses S. Grant said the Mexican-American War was, “the most wicked war in history. I thought so at the time, when I was a youngster, only I had not moral courage enough to resign”.

Grant had first-hand experience as he himself fought in the Mexican-American War (1846-1848), then as a junior officer in his mid-20s. Less than two decades later, he rose to prominence as one of the most important figures during the American Civil War – as Commanding General his powerful Union Army finally crushed the under-resourced Confederates.

Grant would become a two-term American President (1869-1877), initially taking the job with reluctance. “I have been forced into it in spite of myself”, he wrote to William Sherman, a fellow Union Army general during the civil war.

Despite involvement in various conflicts, the Mexican-American War haunted Grant to the end. 

“I had a horror of the Mexican War and I have always believed it was on our part most unjust. The wickedness was in the conduct of the war. We had no claim on Mexico. Texas had no claim beyond the Nueces River, and yet we pushed on to the Rio Grande and crossed it. I am always ashamed of my country when I think of that invasion”.

What is striking about Grant’s views today is how remarkably forthright they are. It would prove unthinkable for US presidents in later centuries to express ethical misgivings about the attacks on Korea or Vietnam, Afghanistan or Iraq – despite the much greater destruction and loss of life.

The defeat of Mexico consolidated US expansion of its territorial size by almost 25%. Texas had initially been annexed from Mexico in 1845, a state almost three times the size of Britain.

The Mexican government refused to recognize Texas’s illegal incorporation into American terrain. By May of the following year (1846), the US had declared war on its southern neighbor. US President James K. Polk utilized the pretext that attacking Mexican forces had “passed the boundary of the United States [in Texas], has invaded our territory and shed American blood upon American soil”.

In truth, the “American soil” was Mexican soil annexed to become part of the US. The Americans were awaiting a ruse in which they could attack Mexico without causing unwanted popular uproar, allowing the US to make further gains into Mexican land.

In all the time since, there has been little demand from democratic leaders for the US to return Mexico’s stolen territories – or at least to recognize a gross injustice was inflicted upon her.

Instead, we hear hypocritical laments over Russia’s “annexation” of Crimea in 2014 – a region that was firstly part of Russia (from 1783-1917) and then later under the sphere of the USSR (1917-1991).

The principal purpose for America’s war of conquest over Mexico was gaining monopoly over cotton production. In the 19th century, cotton was as vital as oil is today, and also represented a key commodity of the slave industry. Control over cotton “would bring England to its feet”. President Polk openly recognized this, as did his immediate predecessor, former President John Tyler.

Indeed, Tyler said of Texas’s 1845 annexation, 

“By securing the virtual monopoly of the cotton plant”, America had acquired “a greater influence over the affairs of the world than would be found in armies however strong, or navies however numerous”.

Tyler continued,

“That monopoly, now secured, places all other nations at our feet. An embargo of a single year would produce in Europe a greater amount of suffering than a fifty years war. I doubt whether Great Britain could avoid convulsions”.

The American victory over Mexico in February 1848, led to the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo. It saw the US take not only Texas from Mexico, but also California, half of New Mexico, most of Arizona, Nevada and Utah, along with parts of Wyoming and Colorado. Much of these areas were rich in cotton, with the conquests signifying an epic land-grab whose repercussions last to the current day.

In keeping with modern times, the Free Press championed America’s illegal interventions. James Gordon Bennett – editor and founder of the New York Herald – then the US’s biggest selling newspaper, wrote approvingly that Britain was “completely bound and manacled with the cotton cords. A lever with which we can successfully control” their main rival. Not a word of the unwarranted acts perpetrated against Mexico.

Indeed, Bennett was hopeful that the Mexicans’ fate would be 

“similar to that of the Indians of this country – the race, before a century rolls over, will become extinct”. He wrote about the “imbecility and degradation of the Mexican people”.

Bennett was one of the major figures in the history of the American press, and felt that “the idea of amalgamation [of races] has been always abhorrent to the Anglo-Saxon race on this continent”.

The Cincinnati Herald editor described Mexicans as “degraded mongrel races”, along with Native Americans. The editor of the Augusta Daily Chronicle, in Georgia, offered prior warning in 1846 that attacking Mexico would likely reveal, 

“a sickening mixture, consisting of such a conglomeration of Negroes and Rancheros, Mestizoes and Indians, with but a few Castilians [Spaniards]”.

In 1845 James Buchanan, future US President, insisted that

“our race of men can never be subjected to the imbecile and indolent Mexican race”.

Texas Senator Sam Houston went even further, saying in 1848 that

“the Mexicans are no better than Indians, and I see no reason why we should not go on in the same course now and take their land [all of Mexico].”

Walt Whitman, America’s famous journalist and poet, asked 

“What has miserable, inefficient Mexico… to do with the great mission of peopling the New World with a noble race?”

With these prevailing attitudes, a quick, easy victory was expected over Mexico. However, it was anything but, as the Mexican Army fought valiantly, surprising its over-confident American foe. The conflict lasted almost two years, before the weight of superior US forces finally told.

Following Mexico’s defeat, a new artificial border was imposed which remained quite open. Those wishing to cross it to visit relatives or engage in commerce found it a straightforward affair. That is, until the 1990s, when the Clinton administration began fortifying and militarizing the Mexican border.

George W. Bush then aggressively expanded upon Clinton’s initiatives along the frontier – under the pretexts of shielding the US from illegal immigrants, terrorists or drug dealers.

The territorial gains over Mexico have largely been erased from memory, despite having occurred comfortably within the past 200 years. It seems plausible that many Americans living in Texas or California may be unaware they are sitting on occupied Mexican land.

The American writer and lecturer Ralph Waldo Emerson said,

“It really doesn’t matter by what means Mexico is taken, as it contributes to the mission of ‘civilizing the world’ and, in the long run, it will be forgotten”.

It has not been forgotten by Mexicans, however. In April last year Mexico’s former presidential candidate, Cuauhtemoc Cardenas, urged his government to bring a lawsuit against America in the International court of Justice, for reparations and indemnification.

A lawyer working for Cardenas said,

 “We are going to make a strong and tough case, because we are right. They were in Mexican territory in a military invasion”.

One suspects Ulysses S. Grant would be in their corner. 


Originally published on 2017-12-03

About the author: Shane Quinn obtained an honors journalism degree. He is interested in writing primarily on foreign affairs, having been inspired by authors like Noam Chomsky.

Source: The Duran

Read our Disclaimer/Legal Statement!

Donate to Support Us

We would like to ask you to consider a small donation to help our team keep working. We accept no advertising and rely only on you, our readers, to keep us digging the truth on history, global politics and international relations.

[wpedon id=”4696″ align=”left”]

READ MORE!
What Results When the U.S. Invades a Country: “Bring Them Democracy”
The U.S. Government certainly leads the world in invasions and coups.In recent years, it has invaded and occupied — either by military assault or by coup, but in either case followed by installing (or trying to install) a new regime there — a number of countries, especially Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria, Ukraine, and Yemen. U.S. propaganda says that its invasions and military occupations (and it denies its coups) are to benefit the people in the invaded and militarily occupied countries, or to bring them ‘democracy’, and are not done merely to benefit the people who control the U.S. Government (which itself is not a ...
READ MORE
Syria, the United Nations, and the  Slobodan Milosevic Treatment
It’s long been obvious the United Nations is a rubber stamp lapdog of the United States. It set the stage for a decade of sanctions that killed hundreds of thousands of Iraqis and piled sanctions of Libya that resulted in the US and NATO (another lapdog) taking military action that killed around 30,000 Libyans. Now that supposedly august body has signaled it will investigate war crimes in Syria. The Associated Press reports the “resolution adopted by the assembly said the body, known as the ‘International, Impartial and Independent Mechanism,’ would help collect and analyze evidence of violations of human rights and international ...
READ MORE
Israel: The Nuclear Hegemon That Poses a Potential Threat to Europe
It is calculated that in addition to the secret arsenal of up to 400 nuclear warheads, according to American Scientists, the Israeli state also reportedly possesses chemical and/or biological WMD, making it a dangerous nuclear hegemon that poses a potential threat not only to the Middle East but also to Europe.  Neither France nor Britain nor Germany can equal Israeli state nuclear weaponisation on both land and sea.This calculation is based on the fact that the state of Israel is the only WMD state to refuse to be a party to either the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) or the Biological ...
READ MORE
Who will Secure Lithuania?
The term “security” is a very multifaceted one. But today’s geopolitical situation forces us to think about its military aspect above all.Our attention is completely absorbed by news about wars, conflicts, military exercises and increasing defence capabilities. An average European reader has no chances to skip this kind of news while looking through news feeds of popular media.Even planned further militarization of the European region and Russia pose the real threat today. A whole generation of European children is growing in the firm belief that the war is approaching. We destroy ourselves by our fears. We notice everything concerning military ...
READ MORE
Why Theresa May Must be Impeached
So the moment we’ve been holding our breaths for a week finally came. In the end, I am mighty glad that this particular strike seems more like the impotent thrashing of the neocon snake that didn’t dare to attack places where Russian servicemen were likely to be killed, than it does the start of World War III. For the moment, at least, thank God.But the fact that it was a fairly limited strike — compared to what it might have been — in which the majority of missiles failed to hit their targets, having been eliminated by Soviet-era air defences, ...
READ MORE
The US Military Project for the World
In May 2017, Thierry Meyssan appeared on Russia Today and explained where the South American elites were going wrong in their fight against US imperialism. He insisted that there has been a sea-change in the way the US now wages armed conflicts and we now need to radically rethink how we should defend our homeland. The operation to destabilize Venezuela continues. The first phase: violent gangs demonstrating against the government killed passers by, as if citizenship created no bonds between them. The second phase: the major food suppliers organized food shortages in the supermarkets. Then some members of the forces ...
READ MORE
How the CIA Created the EU
The details are supplied in an exhaustive 1,000-page biography of Jean Monnet by Éric Roussel, which was published only in France in 1996, and which seems to have been successfully suppressed. It has never been translated, and has no reviews even at Amazon. However, Ambrose Evans-Pritchard of UK's Telegraph newspaper has provided some of the core information from it. Furthermore, Richard J. Aldrich's 2003 The Hidden Hand also provides key details, such as by Aldrich's saying, on page 366, about the American Committee for a United Europe: ACUE, more than any other American front organization of the Cold War, was a ...
READ MORE
Croatian Ministers Salute Criminals and Dishonour the Dead
Last week was marked by the moral acrobatics of two Croatian ministers – War Veterans’ Minister Tomo Medved and Defence Minister Damir Krsticevic – who publicly endorsed two convicted Croatian war criminals, Tomislav Mercep and Mirko Norac. A WWII Independent State of Croatia in which 700.000 Serbs were brutally killed Croatian news site Index reported last week that Mercep, who is serving a prison sentence, spent a total of 45 days at a spa instead of in jail this year and last year. As Mercep is a Croatian war veteran, Medved said he vouched for him as worthy recipient of the spa ...
READ MORE
President Erdogan, a Menace to the World
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has become a serious danger not only to his own nation, but to many others as well. His actions and statements in recent years should seriously worry his neighbors and the entire world.The last tyrant ignored by the international community was the genocidal butcher Adolf Hitler, who unleashed World War II, invading scores of countries and killing millions of people. Regrettably, Western leaders have tried to appease Erdogan, thereby creating a monster.Strangely, some nations in the Islamic world have treated him respect, while many Western countries consider Turkey as one of their key allies. To ...
READ MORE
Bismarck, the United States and the Pomeranian Grenadier
All of the Balkans, legendary German Reichskanzler (Imperial Chancellor) Otto von Bismarck famously said, were not worth the bones of a single Pomeranian grenadier. And Bismarck, a Prussian landowner or junker had nothing but amused contempt for Pomeranian grenadiers who were regarded as a standing joke in the German Army. In 1890, brash, young new German Emperor Wilhelm II fired Bismarck after 28 years as minister-president of Prussia and then first Imperial Chancellor of Germany. He abandoned the priority policy of maintaining warm ties and close communications with Russia that Bismarck had always followed and scrapped the Dreikaiserbund, the League of ...
READ MORE
The Latest Plague So Far is a Brilliant Success
The wicked social control experiment using virus as the pretext for further enslavement is performing magnificently by implanting a sense of helplessness, dependence, and blind conformism. It should be noted that the favorable atmosphere enabling Them (whoever they are) to accomplish just that was contrived by the controlled and unscrupulous media in under a month of intense, coordinated, global brainwashing. Praise is in order, not for the obviously immoral master plan but for the technical excellence of its execution. In the subservient Balkans, local  quislings have expectedly introduced a practically region-wide state of emergency, giving that ignoble set of local ...
READ MORE
The Russians are Coming!
As 2016 closes, we find ourselves a deeply unsettled nation. We’re unable to draw the lines of our national interest. Is it jobs and economy, is it national security, or is it now in our interest to ensure global security — in other words, act as the world’s policemen?As the “failing” (to quote Trump) New York Times degenerates into a Washington Post organization with its stagnant Cold War vision of a 1950s world where the Russians are to blame for most everything — Hillary’s loss, most of the aggression and disorder in the world, the desire to destabilize Europe, etc. — the Times has added the ...
READ MORE
Noel Malcolm: “Kosovo – A Short History”, 1999. A History Written With an Attempt to Support Albanian Territorial Claims in the Balkans (Fourth Part)
Ema Miljkovic-Bojanic, M. A.Institute of History ofSerbian Academy of Sciences and ArtsBelgrade, 2000Malcolm’s Apology of the “Pax Ottomana” (Ab)using of historiography and historical facts for political ends is not a novelty introduced towards the end of the twentieth century. Its instances have been known throughout history, so that “practically there is not a single epoch of human history that was not controlled – by the Church, state, nation, party, leadership…” But precisely at a time when historiography seemed to be getting rid, at least partly, of the grip of “supervision” and when a critical approach was getting the upper hand, the ...
READ MORE
Russia’s Message to the Mushroom
A NATO warmonger President of Lithuania, Dalia Grybauskaite (her surname means a mushroom in the English) is observing Russia's "aggressors" and "cannibals" Origins of images: Facebook, Twitter, Wikimedia, Wikipedia, Flickr, Google, Imageinjection & Pinterest. Read our Disclaimer/Legal Statement! Donate to Support Us We would like to ask you to consider a small donation to help our team keep working. We accept no advertising and rely only on you, our readers, to keep us digging the truth on history, global politics and international relations. [wpedon id="4696" align="left"]
READ MORE
NATO Doesn’t Care that Montenegro is a Haven for Crime and Corruption
There was international jubilation when Montenegro seceded from its union with Serbia in 2006 after a controversial referendum. The Referendum Law prevented Montenegrins living and registered in Serbia from voting in the referendum, ensuring that tens of thousands of Montenegrins, in a country of only 622,000, who would have voted to remain the union could not vote in favour of maintaining it.It must be remembered that state-paid workers like teachers and police were told by the Democratic Party of Socialists (DPS) leader Miodrag Vuković before the referendum May 2006, that someone “cannot work for the state and vote against it,” something objectively ...
READ MORE
God and the Fascists
Origins of immages: Facebook, Twitter, Wikimedia, Wikipedia, Flickr, Google & Pinterest. Read our Disclaimer/Legal Statement! Donate to Support Us We would like to ask you to consider a small donation to help our team keep working. We accept no advertising and rely only on you, our readers, to keep us digging the truth on history, global politics and international relations. [wpedon id="4696" align="left"]
READ MORE
Barack Obama, Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton: Who’s the Fascist?
The U.S. public loves fascists; they elect them, constantly. Donald Trump, who “says he would raise the minimum wage and stop the endless efforts at regime change,” is called a fascist by some.  But Hillary Clinton “is happy to bomb Libya or Syria or any other country,” and played a major role in mass Black incarceration. Barack Obama is the war-maker and deporter-in-chief. “All of the major party candidates fit the F word description in some way.”“No one comes into office with any intention of undoing America’s leadership as the world’s worst jailer.”Donald Trump is the ill spoken, boorish, graceless ...
READ MORE
“The Civilized World” Strikes Again: Donald Trump, a Complete Puppet of the Military Industrial Complex
It is apparent given the timelines and the lack of time given to verifying the validity of accusations concerning the gas attack in Homs, Syria, that plans had already been coordinated for such an attack. Watching the mainstream media the viewer receives the impression from the wording of the announcers reports and questions for the “experts” that the matter was already decided in favour of the U.S. military strike on the airbase. I see pictures of Colin Powell at the UN holding up glossy photos of supposed chemical weapons manufacturing plants. It demonstrates to a high degree how easily manipulated Trump ...
READ MORE
What America’s Aristocracy Want
The American aristocracy want inequality of rights, with two basic polar-opposite classes: the ‘elite’, with themselves at the top of everything, and everybody else below them, as subjects to be ruled by them, in such ways as they (themselves, and their fellow ‘elite’) can agree to do. They are convinced that they have earned their high status, in one way or another, and they compete ferociously amongst themselves, to rise even higher within the aristocracy.Many of the aristocrats think that they are ‘elite’ because they are the richest; many think instead that the ‘elite’ are the smartest or the most ...
READ MORE
“Humanitarian Intervention” and the „New World Order“: A Violation of the International Law
The Concept & The Origin Of The TermThe term „humanitarian intervention“ is the American political neologism (newly coined word) to morally cover a new format of  Washington's global imperialism at the time of the post-Cold War's „New World Order“ in which the USA feel very comfortable to play a role of a global policeman. Theoretically, according to the Western conception of „humanitarian intervention“, one or more states (the USA and the NATO) have a moral (quasi) obligation and/or right to intervene into the internal affairs of other state, if this state (according to the self-evaluation by Washington) does not respect ...
READ MORE
What Results When the U.S. Invades a Country: “Bring Them Democracy”
Syria, the United Nations, and the Slobodan Milosevic Treatment
Israel: The Nuclear Hegemon That Poses a Potential Threat to Europe
Who will Secure Lithuania?
Why Theresa May Must be Impeached
The US Military Project for the World
How the CIA Created the EU
Croatian Ministers Salute Criminals and Dishonour the Dead
President Erdogan, a Menace to the World
Bismarck, the United States and the Pomeranian Grenadier
The Latest Plague So Far is a Brilliant Success
The Russians are Coming!
Noel Malcolm: “Kosovo – A Short History”, 1999. A History Written With an Attempt to Support Albanian Territorial Claims in the Balkans (Fourth Part)
Russia’s Message to the Mushroom
NATO Doesn’t Care that Montenegro is a Haven for Crime and Corruption
God and the Fascists
Barack Obama, Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton: Who’s the Fascist?
“The Civilized World” Strikes Again: Donald Trump, a Complete Puppet of the Military Industrial Complex
What America’s Aristocracy Want
“Humanitarian Intervention” and the „New World Order“: A Violation of the International Law

Written by Policraticus

SHORT LEGAL DISCLAIMER: The website’s owner & editor-in-chief has no official position on any issue published at this website. The views of the authors presented at this website do not necessarily coincide with the opinion of the owner & editor-in-chief of the website. The contents of all material (articles, books, photos, videos…) are of sole responsibility of the authors. The owner & editor-in-chief of this website is not morally, scientifically or legally responsible for any inaccurate or incorrect statement in the contents of all material found on this website. The owner & editor-in-chief of this website is not responsible for the content of external internet sites. No advertising, government or corporate funding for the functioning of this website. The owner & editor-in-chief and authors are not morally, scientifically or legally responsible for any inaccurate or incorrect statement in the text and material found on the website www.global-politics.eu

Website: http://www.global-politics.eu