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The Velacruz Disaster by Steve Payne


Author says: what if the Confederacy accidentally fired on British ships during the American Civil War? Please note that the opinions expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect the views of the author(s).

On July 17th 1861, President Benito Juárez's ill-timed decision to suspend interest payments to Mexico's major creditors triggered a military intevention from Spain, France and Great Britain that indirectly caused the escalation of the American Civil War into a six power regional conflict lasting over a decade.

Ironically, the burning issue of race was also connected to the so-called Maximillian Affair, because Juárez was a Zapotec Amerindian who served five terms as president, thus becoming the first full-blooded indigenous national ever to lead a country in the Western Hemisphere.

The leader of the opposition to Juárez was Napoleon III who built an alliance between France, Spanish and British, uniting efforts to receive payments from Mexico at the Treaty of London on 31 October.

In early January 1862, allied fleet and troops began to arrive at Mexico's main Gulf port, Veracruz. After that the situation deteriorated very quickly. Misidentifying her as a Union vessel, the Confederate States Navy accidentally fired on a British warship en route to Velacruz. And the British Government also discovered that Napoleon III's plan was rather bolder than recovering payment, it was nothing less than the French conquest of Mexico.

Author says to view guest historian's comments on this post please visit the Today in Alternate History web site.

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Steve Payne

Editor of Today in Alternate History, a Daily Updating Blog of Important Events In History That Never Occurred Today. Follow us on Facebook, Myspace and Twitter.

Imagine what would be, if history had occurred a bit differently. Who says it didn't, somewhere? These fictional news items explore that possibility. Possibilities such as America becoming a Marxist superpower, aliens influencing human history in the 18th century and Teddy Roosevelt winning his 3rd term as president abound in this interesting fictional blog.


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