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HISTORY OF THE MEXICAN WAR.

CHAPTER I.

CAUSES OF THE Mexican WAR-Revolution of the Hispano-American Provinces

-Consequent irregularities–Neutrality of the United States, Violations of it by Mexico—Forbearance of the United States— Treaty of Amity, Commerce, and Navigation-Revolt of Texas-Neutrality of the United States—Troops under General Gaines-Conduct of M. Gorostiza, the Mexican Minister.

While in every war the civil authority of the country in which it is carried on, will be, to some extent, subordinate to the military power, it is an aggravation of the unnatural character of a civil war, that the disregard of law is general, and that the rights of persons and property, being without any adequate security, are liable to continual molestation. The overthrow of the existing government of a country, or resistance to its authority, with the excitement and confusion incident to the struggles of antagonistic factions for ascendancy, all tend directly to produce a lawless and aggressive spirit, which is hostile to personal liberty, while the wasting of the public resources of the country by the double exactions of intestine war, give rise to those pressing necessities which are often supplied by the forcible impressment and appropriation of private property.

This was exemplied in the struggles of the different HispanoAmerican countries for independence. The people were continually subjected to seizure of their property either by the republicans or monarchists, just as one party or the other happened to prevai), and was in want of necessary funds.

Nor in their efforts to raise means to support the contest in which they were engaged, did they evince much more respect for the law of nations than they did for the laws of their own country; the property belonging to citizens of a neutral power, was appropriated to their own use, without scruple or reserve, whenever it was necessary to their purpose. Although, during the protracted struggle between Spain and her revolted colonies, the most perfact neutrality was observed by the government of the United States, this impartial course did not shield her from the depredations of both the belligerents. An extract from the first annual i message of President Monroe, in 1817, will exhibit the aggressive conduct of the contending parties, and the just and liberal policy of the United States towards both .

" It was anticipated, at an early stage, that the contest between Spain and the colonies would become highly interesting to the United States. It was natural that our citizens should sympathize in events which affected their neighbours. It seemed probable, also, that the prosecution of the conflict, along our coasts and in contiguous countries, would occasionally interrupt our commerce, and otherwise affect the persons and property of our citizens. These anticipations have been realized. Such injuries have been received from persons acting under the authority of both the parties; and, for which, redress has in most instances been withheld. Through every stage of the conflict, the United States have maintained an impartial neutrality, giving aid to neither of the parties in men, money, ships, or munitions of war. They have regarded the contest not in the light of an ordinary insurrection or rebellion, but as a civil war between parties nearly equal, having, as to neutral powers, equal rights. Our ports have been open to both, and every article, the fruit of our soil or of the industry of our citizens, which either was permitted to take, has been equally free to the other. Should the colonies establish their independence, it is proper now to state, that this government neither seeks nor would accept from them any advantage in commerce or otherwise,

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