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!Cinco de Mayo! !Fiesta!

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No Elephants Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-05-12 05:44 AM
Original message
!Cinco de Mayo! !Fiesta!
Contrary to popular belief, this is not the anniversay of Mexico's independence from Spain, which is September 16.

This is the anniversary of the Battle of the Mexican State of Puebla: On May 5, 1862, the Mexican army, led by General Ignacio Zaragoza Segun, defeated the Napoleonic French.

Events leading to Cinco de Mayo

Cinco de Mayo has its roots in the French occupation of Mexico, which took place in the aftermath of the Mexican-American War of 1846-48, the Mexican Civil War of 1858, and the 1860 Reform Wars. These wars left the Mexican Treasury in ruins and nearly bankrupt. On July 17, 1861, Mexican President Benito Jurez issued a moratorium in which all foreign debt payments would be suspended for two years.<12><13> In response, France, Britain, and Spain sent naval forces to Veracruz to demand reimbursement. Britain and Spain negotiated with Mexico and withdrew, but France, at the time ruled by Napoleon III, decided to use the opportunity to establish a Latin empire in Mexico that would favor French interests, the Second Mexican Empire.


Events after the Battle

The Mexican victory, however, was short-lived. Thirty thousand troops and a full year later, the French were able to depose the Mexican army, capture Mexico City, and establish Emperor Maximilian I as ruler of Mexico.<1> However, the French victory was also short-lived, lasting only 3 years, from 1864 to 1867. With the U.S. Civil War over in 1865, the U.S. was able to provide more assistance to Mexico to expel the French, after which Maximilian I was executed by the Mexicans, along with his Mexican generals Miramn and Meja, in the Cerro de las Campanas, Quertaro.<1><13>

The Battle of Puebla was important for at least two reasons. First, although considerably outnumbered, the Mexicans defeated a much better-equipped French army. "This battle was significant in that the 4,000 Mexican soldiers were greatly outnumbered by the well-equipped French army of 8,000 that had not been defeated for almost 50 years." <20> <21> Second, it was significant because since the Battle of Puebla, no country in the Americas has been invaded by any other European military force.<22>
Consequences to the United States

Some historians have argued that France's real goal was to help break up the American Union, at the time in the midst of a civil war, by helping the southern Confederacy:<24> "The Mexicans had won a great victory that kept Napoleon III from supplying the confederate rebels for another year, allowing the United States to build a powerful army. This grand army smashed the Confederates at Gettysburg just 14 months after the battle of Puebla, essentially ending the Civil War." The consequence of Cinco de Mayo to the United States has been thus recognized: "The defeat of the French army had consequences for America as well...the French defeat denied Napoleon III the opportunity to resupply the Confederate rebels for another year."<25>

Until Americans got hold of the holiday, it was celebrated mostly in the State of Puebla.

Now, all their Margaritas are belong to us!

Let's don costumes and dance!

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ellisonz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-05-12 01:22 PM
Response to Original message
1. Also
It's not Cinco de Drinko! x(
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lbrtbell Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-05-12 10:28 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. Neither is St. Pat's Day
It's actually a religious holiday. :)
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No Elephants Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-06-12 02:16 AM
Response to Reply #1
3. ?How about Cinco de Dance-o?
Edited on Sun May-06-12 02:17 AM by No Elephants
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No Elephants Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-06-12 04:56 AM
Response to Reply #1
4. Oops, Maybe it was Cindo de Drinko. "I'll Have Another" won the Derby yesterday.
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