by Raoul Lowery Contreras
In the hot country (Tierra Caliente) between the Port city of Vera Cruz and the cooler mountains around Puebla Mexican guerrilla fighters swarmed all around French invading troops that had been embarrassed by Mexican regular and irregular troops in the battle of Puebla on May 5th, 1862.
The guerrilla Mexicans hit-and-run at every opportunity at one point wiping out an entire reinforced company (five survivors) of the French Foreign Legion at Cameron, outside Vera Cruz; The French Army and Legion, which was separate blindly furious at the great Mexican triumph.
Embarrassed Legionnaires, for example, arrested every male Mexican over ten years of age and summarily executed them, when they couldn’t find suspected “guerrillas” they executed old Mexican men. As the French commanding General declared, “Every Mexican is a guerrilla.”
Was the French guerrilla-extermination campaign legitimate? No. They crossed the Atlantic Ocean to attack and occupy an independent nation (for debt collection) not because it was in the French sphere of influence or to protect French nationals – they did it for money. There were no French in Mexico greeting Hernando Cortez and his 219 brigands, rogues and soldiers of fortune when their ships were burned by Cortez so they couldn’t back out of his campaign to conquer Mexica, then the grandest Empire in the world rooted in what was the largest city in the world, what is now Mexico City.
How inappropriate then is the current flap between Israel and the French Government which has called in Israeli diplomats to read them a “riot act” because just 24 hours after a phony vote by the United Nations General Assembly “recognizing” a Palestinian state, Israel announced that it was approving the construction of 3,000 new residences for Israeli citizens on conquered West Bank land.
Supporters of the Palestinian cause are up in arms about this Israeli move and are blindly supporting the French and their allies, the British – that caused the entire Middle East mess to begin with – in this 2012 anti-Semitic campaign the Brits and French have implemented for decades, if not centuries.
The startling thing about this emotional attack against Israel is who the players are. The French claimed Syria and Lebanon as part of their colonial empire for decades but sit idly by while the Syrian government of Assad kills thousands of Syrians that used to be French subjects until WWII. The Brits ruled Palestine between 1918 and 1948 (after the Turkish loss of its empire because it stupidly sided with Germany in WW1) – badly and then simply abandoned the area and left the Jewish and Arab populations to fight it out. Of course, the Brits couldn’t leave things alone, British officers (e.g. Glubb Pasha staffed Jordan’s Arab legion, the best Army in the Middle East. Thus, the Brits were intimately against the Jewish fight for Independence, on the wrong side of history, of course.
The Arab nations of 1948 (Egypt, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Saudi Arabia) attacked the various Jewish groups and settlements, some of which had existed for thousands of year (Herod, for example, and Jerusalem) in an effort to drive the Jews into the “sea.” Arab armies, however, aren’t worth a crap and the Jews carried the Day. They carried more days than that one in 1967 and 1973. During those Arab attacks, the Israelis defeated the inept Arab armies and took land.
It is that land that is now in question. To whom does that land belong, Arab transient tribes (the Bedouin) that cannot point to thousands of years of roots in that land, or the Jews that we read about in the Old Testament Bible?
Let’s go back to the French invasion of Mexico in 1862. Were the French justified to invade and occupy Mexico? Of course they not. Are the French justified in objecting to Israel’s new settlements on territory it paid for with blood? No. Their objections are stupid.
Their stupidity is reflected in some objections raised by some in the Hispanic community. For example, how many times have we heard that “I didn’t cross the border, the border crossed me.” Part of that symbolism is correct in criticizing the USA for deliberately starting a war simply to grab real estate known as California, et al. The “grab” was an official Democrat Party effort to spread slavery because slavery had been slowed by rising opposition to slavery in much of the country.
The part that isn’t legitimate is that so many Mexican Americans complain as if they have a right to what the American’s conquered one-hundred and sixty four years ago. They sound like Palestinians, losers, whiners and people simply not up to the tasks or duties of 2012.