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Cinco de Mayo, Viva Mexico!

Cinco de Mayo is fast approaching, and rest assured, since it falls on Saturday this year, there will be celebrations both here in Baja and across the U.S. as well.

Cinco de Mayo commemorates the Battle of Puebla which took place on May 5, 1862 near the city of Puebla, Mexico.  Although it was declared a national holiday on September 16, 1862, by President Benito Juarez, it is now widely recognized as a day of celebration but doesn't necessarily mean a day off work or school.

This battle represents one of the Mexican Army's few but important victories against the French Occupation.  And while the French did ultimately take Puebla when Napolean sent an additional 29,000 troops, the victory on May 5, 1862, boosted the moral and the courage of the Mexican Army in their struggle against the French.  The French did ultimately take control of Mexico but Napolean's aspirations of doing so quickly were trampled by this one victory.

Why is that important?  If Napolean had taken Mexico with ease, he would have realized his plans to use Mexico as a key base to aid the Confederates during the American Civil War.

 May 5 is not Independence Day for Mexico but it was a great victory that inspired the Mexican people to continue to the fight and eventually regain their independence.

Posted: Wednesday, May 2, 2007 2:20 PM by Herb Kinsey


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