James K. Polk's Call For War

Good Essays
Polk’s Call for War In 1846, Congress received a message from President James K. Polk that discussed the difficult relations between the United States and Mexico and urged Congress to declare war against Mexico. He informed Congress of a recent massacre of American soldiers in an area that was believed to be owned by the United States, which convinced Congress to draft a declaration of war against Mexico. Even though American soldiers did perish at the hand of Mexican soldiers, I do not believe that the declaration of war was justified because the incident happened on land that both countries believed was rightfully theirs. Also, the events that followed the Mexican American War slightly indicated that one of the purposes of the war was …show more content…
When the United States annexed Texas, they believed the Texan boundary was along the Rio Grande River, whereas Mexico insisted that the Nueces River was the boundary. Polk, being one of the many Americans who believed the border was the Rio Grande, told Congress in the “Special Message to Congress on Mexican Relations” that, “... Mexico has passed the boundary of the Unites States, has invaded our territory and shed American blood upon the American soil. She has proclaimed that hostilities have commenced, and that the two nations are now at war” (4). Notably in that statement, Polk claimed the soil to be “American” when America’s possession of the land between the two rivers was unofficial during that time. In addition, Mexicans attacked the American soldiers because Polk had ordered General Zachary Taylor to dispatch troops into the area and set up a fort. I believe that it was understandable for the Mexicans to attack the troops, since they had built a military fort on land that was believed to belong to Mexico. The attack that was executed by the Mexicans was an act of war, but in a way, building a military fort and sending out troops in between the Rio Grande and Nueces was also an act of war towards Mexico. Thus, Polk’s call for war was unnecessary, because of his seemingly hostile decision to place a fort on property that another country still believed was

Related Documents

  • Amazing Essays

    declaring the U.S. intention to end the joint occupation of the region. Despite his statements, Polk was not interested in going to war over the territory. While he did sincerely believe that America had a stronger claim to the region than the British, he understood that the U.S. would be at a major disadvantage in a war with the British. The British had no intention of going to war either, as the economic importance of the region had decreased as the Hudson Bay Company shifted focus from the fur trade to…

    • 1461 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Amazing Essays
  • Better Essays

    Mexican War Essay

    • 1120 Words
    • 5 Pages

    Yvonne Major Paper Essay 2 US-Mexican War Mexico invited Americans to live in Texas because they (Mexico) did not have the resources to help develop the land. The Americans, led by Sam Houston, were willing to help develop the land with the understanding they were to become citizens of Mexico. Although did ask for the American to move to their area of Texas, the Mexican government did not expect there to be such a huge influx of Americans coming into their area. Soon the American people and even…

    • 1120 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Better Essays