A Short, Offhand, Killing Affair: Soldiers and Social by Paul Foos

By Paul Foos

The Mexican-American battle (1846-48) came upon americans on new terrain. A republic based at the precept of armed safety of freedom used to be now going to struggle on behalf of happen future, looking to overcome an surprising kingdom and other people. via an exam of rank-and-file squaddies, Paul Foos sheds new mild at the warfare and its impression on attitudes towards different races and nationalities that stood within the approach of yankee expansionism.

Drawing on wartime diaries and letters no longer formerly tested by way of students, Foos exhibits that the adventure of squaddies within the warfare differed notably from the confident, patriotic photograph trumpeted by means of political and armed forces leaders looking recruits for a volunteer military. Promised entry to land, financial chance, and political equality, the enlistees in its place discovered themselves subjected to surprisingly harsh self-discipline and harrowing conflict stipulations. for this reason, a few infantrymen tailored the rhetoric of appear future to their very own reasons, taking for themselves what were promised, usually through looting the Mexican nation-state or committing racial and sexual atrocities. Others abandoned the military to struggle for the enemy or search employment within the West. those acts, Foos argues, in addition to the government's tacit reputation of them, translated right into a extra violent, destructive number of occur Destiny.

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