Cinco de Mayo

Cinco de Mayo

Cinco de Mayo

The Battle of Puebla was an armed confrontation between the Mexican army, led by Ignacio Zaragoza, and the French army, which took place on May 5th in 1862 and was part of the Second French Intervention in Mexico.

Know more about this conflict

The origin of this conflict was due to the debt of 80 million pesos due to the War of Reform that Mexico had with England, Spain and France. Despite the fact that the government of Benito Juárez reached a diplomatic agreement with Spain and England, during the negotiations; a French military contingent arrived under the command of Charles Ferdinand Latrille, Count of Lorencez, who would later attack the city of Puebla with five thousand.

Juárez knew that it was impossible to avoid a conflict with France, so he ordered the fortification of Puebla to protect Mexico City. To do this, he created the Army of the East that was in charge of General Ignacio Zaragoza.

Zaragoza’s forces numbered approximately two thousand men, many of whom were indigenous and warriors of mixed descent with no military experience. The battle, which lasted just over five hours, resulted in a successful defense by the Mexican army that, despite being heavily outnumbered, managed to withdraw the French forces that ended with 500 casualties. This confrontation is considered one of the greatest victories of the Mexican army, having defeated with inferior forces one of the most important armies in the world.

Why United States celebrate Cinco de Mayo?

Cinco De May’s deeply rooted history in the Franco-Mexican War influenced Mexican-Mexican American communities in the early years of the American Civil War. In the early 1860s, as the Civil War erupted, these communities took up the banner of the Cinco De Mayo celebration as a way to commemorate the cause of freedom and democracy.

The French intervention was part of the French strategy to stop the development of the United States, which, under the government of Abraham Lincoln, was already emerging as a power, that is why Lincoln´s government agreed to support Benito Juárez in his fight against the French, and send arms and logistical support, helping their own interests to.

Currently, on Cinco de Mayo celebrations in the United States, cannot miss the charro hats, the colored piñatas in the shape of a burrito, which North Americans consider the traditional model, and “Margaritas”, a cocktail base of tequila that the neighbors of the north think is the iconic Mexican Drink. 

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