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American Civil WarsThe United States, Latin America, Europe, and the Crisis of the 1860s$
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Don H. Doyle

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781469631097

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469631097.001.0001

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France’s Grand Design and the Confederacy

France’s Grand Design and the Confederacy

Chapter:
(p.107) Chapter Five France’s Grand Design and the Confederacy
Source:
American Civil Wars
Author(s):

Stève Sainlaude

Publisher:
University of North Carolina Press
DOI:10.5149/northcarolina/9781469631097.003.0006

The words of Rouher expressed about the French expedition in Mexico as being la Grande pensée du règne (the Grand thought of the Reign) be related not only about Napoléon III’s project cherished for this country. They also expressed the opportunity to raise a dike against the expansionism of the United States that France was afraid since a long time. In this context, in 1861, the weakening of the Union and the birth of CSA sounded as though to serve the French interests in Mexico. In such a case it seemed obvious that to make sure of the success of this intention France had to confirm the division of the United States by recognizing the Confederacy. But this reasoning was going to find some limits in the nature of the Southern nationalism.

Keywords:   France, Mexico, Napoléon III, Guizot, Maximilian, General Forey, Monroe doctrine, Southern expansion, Confederacy recognition, France’s American foreign policy

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