Why did France lose against MExico?

Nov 2013
739
Texas
This is probably the most embarrasing defeat the French had since the 7 years war, and even it must be pointed out that Prussia and the UK were more than worthy adversaries (even/especially during the time of Frederick the Great and Robert Clive)

French power may have been waning; but they were still powerful until the great depression.

How does France (and with allies at that) lose to Mexico? EVen if Mexico had peripheral USA support?
 

betgo

Ad Honorem
Jul 2011
6,692
They weren't completely defeated. They needed to forces back home to deal with the Prussian threat. France also had almost no support in Mexico and the republicans had a limitless supply of US weapons. How did was that British force completely wiped out in Afghanistan?
 
Sep 2012
1,222
Tarkington, Texas
The French knew that Bill Sherman was going to the Rio Grande with an army to "persuade" the French to leave. The French had violated the Monroe Doctrine while the US was otherwise engaged.

Pruitt
 

betgo

Ad Honorem
Jul 2011
6,692
The French knew that Bill Sherman was going to the Rio Grande with an army to "persuade" the French to leave. The French had violated the Monroe Doctrine while the US was otherwise engaged.

Pruitt
Do you have any source or reasoning for this? Was the US going to go to war against France?
 
Oct 2019
82
Near the dogbowl
This is probably the most embarrasing defeat the French had since the 7 years war, and even it must be pointed out that Prussia and the UK were more than worthy adversaries (even/especially during the time of Frederick the Great and Robert Clive)

French power may have been waning; but they were still powerful until the great depression.

How does France (and with allies at that) lose to Mexico? EVen if Mexico had peripheral USA support?
Flip the question on its head. How did they expect to win?
*Mexico's size is huge in scale to Europe.
*Mexico's geography is amazingly diverse, ranging from THICK jungle (you want to experience what the term jungle really means, go to the Yucatan), to mountainous regions, to desert.
*Mexico had a large population.
*French forces were small.
*Mexico had a culture and tradition of both bandits and armed rebellions.
*Mexico was contiguous to a supportive superpower, which wanted France out. Once it was not "distracted," it would surely focus attention on the situation. "Poor Mexico, so far from God, so close to the United States."
 
  • Like
Reactions: Gvelion and betgo

betgo

Ad Honorem
Jul 2011
6,692
Actually, the US was a major power, not a superpower. Britain might have been a superpower.

France was concerned about war with the US and also war with Prussia, so withdrawing the troops was an easy decision.
 

betgo

Ad Honorem
Jul 2011
6,692
Napoleon III had an aggressive foreign policy, which this Mexican adventure was a part of. It was successful in greatly expanding the French Empire, even though his reign crashed and burnt when he was captured in battle.
 
Sep 2012
1,222
Tarkington, Texas
The US had a sizeable Navy and Army at the end of the ACW. The Army did not disband like they did in most wars. The Army was used to garrison the former Confederate States and ensure the Carpetbaggers and Scalawags stayed in power. These "friendly" state governments kept the Republicans in power for the next ten years. The Army did not release the new Regular units until Reconstruction was over. The US Army could have followed the same general plan they followed in the Mexican War: a limited thrust across the Rio Grande and a full scale invasion by way of Vera Cruz. Once the French Troops were cut off from French supply, the war would be over with.

As a military leader, Napoleon III, was not fit to clean his uncle's shoes.

The only way the French could have hurt the US is if the French Navy turned to Commerce Raiding.

Pruitt
 

betgo

Ad Honorem
Jul 2011
6,692
The US could have invaded Mexico and probably implied to France that it might. That doesn't mean it was going to happen. Theoretically, France could invade the US. I doubt the US really wanted war with France.
 
Sep 2012
1,222
Tarkington, Texas
France could have invaded the US? One famous Civil War General was quoted as saying: "Give me Confederate Infantry and Yankee Artillery and I will conquer the world!" There is no way the French could have shipped enough troops across the Atlantic or horses. If you were the designated French Commander, how many troops would you have taken and where would you have landed them? How would Nappy3 have prevented American ships from destroying French maritime commerce? The Americans could put enough ships and troops together to have taken out ALL French colonies in the Caribbean and off Newfoundland with enough to screw up any invasion. France got its salted fish from two tiny islands near the Grand Banks.

Are you from France?

Pruitt
 
  • Like
Reactions: heavenly knight