Mexico - national flag
The flag was officially adopted in 1968, but its origins go back to the
country's independence in 1821. The green color symbolizes independence, the
white stands for the purity of the religion, and the red for unity. The coat of
arms with the eagle on a cactus and with a snake in its beak was added in 1823,
referring to an Aztec legend about the founding of Mexico City.
What does the flag of Mexico look like? Follow this link, then you will see
the image in PNG format and flag meaning description about this country.
Mexico - history
Mexico's history can be divided into three phases: the time before the
Spaniards (until about 1520), the colonial era (about 1520-1821) and the
independence (from 1821).
Mexico before the Spaniards
Archaeological finds in the Mexico Valley have shown the presence of
hunter-gatherer societies around 9000 BC. An incipient agricultural society
emerged around 5000 BC. with cultivation of corn, avocado, chili peppers, beans,
squash etc. as a basis.
The more complex societies originated in the time before the year 1000 BC,
and approximately from this time originate the oldest known monumental stone
sculptures that were used in connection with the ceremonial centers of
the Olmecs. High cultures emerged very early in Mexico. The Mayan culture with
its artistic and architectural traditions flourished in the centuries after the
birth of Christ.
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I 1400-1500-t. dominated the Aztecs, and they founded Tenochtitlan,
present-day Mexico City. They gained great military strength and came to control
all of central Mexico. See also Mesoamerica.
In 1519, the Spaniard Hernán Cortés landed at present-day Veracruz with a
small force. Hernán Cortés found allies among the Aztecs 'opponents, and among
these allies, Cortés' Native American interpreter and mistress, Malinche, has
gone down in history as a symbol of the fusion between Spaniards and Indians and
the subjugation of the latter. As early as 1521, Cortés was able to occupy
Spanish dominance over Nueva España, as Mexico was called in
colonial times, was established on the one hand through a fine-meshed
political-administrative system with the cabildo 'city council' as the
lowest unit and the viceroyalty as the supreme body; on the other hand, the
allocation of land to individual Spaniards ensured the physical colonization of
the territory and society.
The Spaniards concentrated especially in central and southern Mexico, where
the indigenous population was largest, and on Zacatecas, Guanajuato, and San
Luis Potosí, where important silver finds had been made. In sparsely populated
northern Mexico, monastic orders such as Franciscans and Jesuits established
Through a system of taxes and hovering work, the Native American people were
incorporated into colonial-era social organization, which placed the
Spanish-born colonial administration at the top and below that of the Spanish
and Creole land-owning upper classes.
The construction with the Spanish crown as the supreme authority in a
hierarchical system proved to be very stable and did not really begin to crumble
until the early 1800's, when Napoleon I occupied Spain in 1808 and imprisoned the
Spanish king, Ferdinand 7.
Independence and development in the 1800's.
The most important local uprising was launched on 16.9.1810 in the village of
Dolores with the Creole priest Miguel Hidalgo y Castilla's speech Grito de
Dolores 'The cry of Dolores'. Hidalgo demanded the deposition of the
Spanish colonial administration, equality between the races and redistribution
The uprising was supported by both Indians and certain criollos,
Spanish descendants born in Latin America, but assumed the character of a class
and racial war when the disorganized rebel army murdered the upper class of the
state capital Guanajuato, including several criollos. In doing so, the royal
army gained great support from the Mexican upper class in the suppression of the
|Emperors and presidents in committee
||Agustín de Iturbide
||Manuel Fernández Guadelupe Victoria
||Antonio López de Santa Anna
||Antonio López de Santa Anna
||Plutarco Elías Calles
||José López Portillo
||Miguel de la Madrid
||Enrique Peña Nieto
Mexico first became independent in 1821, again in a situation where the
Spanish King Ferdinand VII was weakened. This time, it was the Mexican elite who
wanted independence to preserve their privileges, as it saw threatened by a
After a short period, 1821-23, with a Mexican empire under the otherwise
royalist army commander Agustín de Iturbide, who had secured Mexico's
independence from Spain, followed a very long period of civil wars and
frequently changing governments.
Two factions within the elite fought for control of society. The Centralists,
who predominantly belonged to the Conservative Party, advocated a strong central
power in the style of the colonial viceroyalty and to maintain the position of
power of the Catholic Church in Mexican society. The federalists, on the other
hand, were for the most part liberals, who were in favor of a decentralization
of power, which was to be outsourced to the states, where most liberal leaders
had their personal power bases.
The Liberals advocated weakening the Church's position of power, privatizing
the Church's land holdings, and depriving them of the fueros, laws,
and privileges of the Church and Army that gave them special legal status and
The political situation did not stabilize until 1867, when the liberal Benito
Juárez returned to power. Meanwhile, Mexico had lost about half of its territory
to the United States. By 1836, Texas had declared independence from Mexico, and
in the Mexican-American War of 1846-48, the entire present southwestern United
States was lost. Furthermore, Mexico had experienced a French intervention in
1861, and in 1864, at the instigation of France and Napoleon III, the Austrian
prince Maximilian had been installed as Mexico's second emperor.
Mexico's second empire lasted until 1867, when the republic was
re-established after Maximilian's execution and the victory of the Liberal Army,
and in subsequent years, liberal policy was implemented. The lands of the church
and the Native American village communities were privatized and a liberal
constitution was introduced.
In 1877, Porfirio Díaz became president, and he retained his position until
1911, when the Mexican Revolution forced him into exile. During Díaz's reign,
liberal politics continued under the motto "order and progress". Political
stability led to a large foreign interest in investing in Mexico's export
sector, and the country had its infrastructure modernized.
With this came strong economic growth, which, however, did not change much
the country's unequal social structure, but led to an increase in wealth for
parts of the elite and a social rise to the middle class for others. Porfirio
Díaz's government, however, was not democratic, and parts of the Mexican upper
class felt neglected by the inner circle of the president, the so-called científicos,
who they thought were too closely linked to foreign rather than national
The Mexican Revolution
Francisco Madero's nationalist-democratic revolution, which broke out in
1910, must be understood against this background, while the Native American and
peasant uprising that broke out in the southern state of Morelos under
the leadership of revolutionary hero Emiliano Zapata found its background in
1800's liberal land reforms, which had meant that the small farmers often lost
Emiliano Zapata's rebels wanted the Native American common lands returned to
their former owners. The victorious movement became the nationalist-democratic,
but only after a long and unstable period 1910-20. Emiliano Zapata was killed by
political opponents in 1919, a fate that would surpass several of the leaders of
Political stabilization and developments in the first half of the
With the formation of the PNR (National Revolutionary Party) in 1929, the
Revolutionary Generals succeeded in stabilizing the political system. The party
formation ensured a centralization of power by the president, who had his power
base among regional caudillos ' 'leaders'. Another significant
consequence of the revolution was the Constitution of 1917 with its principles
of social justice and land reform and with its nationalist spirit.
Land reform gained momentum especially during the presidency of Lázaro
Cárdenas in 1934-40, just as the peak of nationalism was reached with the
nationalization of the foreign-owned oil industry.
Under Lázaro Cárdenas, the PNR was renamed the PRM, and in this connection
was given a corporate structure with four sectors, which were to represent all
interests of society: the workers, the peasants, the popular sector and the
Second half of 1900-t.
The authoritarian political system functioned through a clientelism, which
was the background for pro-democracy student demonstrations in Mexico City in
1968. A further reason for the demonstrations was the dissatisfaction with the
skewed social development in the country, which harmonized poorly with the
spirit of the Constitution.
The demonstrations were met with violent repression and several were
killed. In the years after 1968, there was a gradual democratization in Mexico,
but the so-called state party, the PRI (Institutional Revolutionary Party), had
never lost a presidential election until 2000.
After 1950, Mexico implemented an industrialization policy based on
protectionism and import substitution. The policy initially led to economic
growth, but at the same time a social marginalization of small farmers and a
sharp migration from country to city. In the 1970's, however, growth stalled but
was re-established as a result of major oil discoveries.
Mexico's foreign debt rose sharply after 1970, and as oil prices fell and
interest rates rose, the foundation was pulled away during the Mexican economy,
which experienced its worst crisis to date. President José López
Portillo nationalized banking to stop the flight of capital, but the crisis was
out of control.
Subsequent economic reforms, which have led to major poverty problems, have
made it possible to conclude the NAFTA free trade agreement with the United
States and Canada. The NAFTA agreement seems to have strong support in Mexico,
but is also facing a lot of opposition. On 1 January 1994, a riot broke out in
the southern state of Chiapas on the day of the entry into force of the NAFTA
agreement. Opponents of the agreement see it as the death knell for Mexican
small farms and for the survival of Native American communities.
Mexico following the 1995 economic crisis
Mexico experienced its worst crisis since the 1930's, when the peso in 1995
lost 30% of its value, and over 1 million. became unemployed. In addition, Raúl
Salinas de Gortari (b. 1946), brother of former President Carlos Salinas de
Gortari, was arrested in 1994 for the assassination of the PRI Secretary
General and later also exposed for major corruption.
The PRI's grip on power was decisively weakened by the 1996 Election Act,
which freed the Electoral Commission from the government, introduced equal
access to the media and direct elections for the post of mayor of Mexico
City. When conservative businessman Vicente Fox from the Partido Acción Nacional
(PAN) party won the presidential election in 2000, the PRI lost control of the
country after 71 years in power.
President Vicente Fox stood in a difficult situation without a majority in
any of the two chambers of Congress and with a large PRI apparatus as his
legacy. He wanted expanded free trade, but did nothing special to reduce the
income disparities that are among the largest in Latin America.
In the poorest state of Chiapas, the left took the post of governor from the
PRI in 2000, but no peace settlement was reached with the Zapatista rebels.
Since the economic crisis of 1994-95, the country's economic situation has
improved through increased exports, which have led to growing employment and
rising wages, but not a leveling out of the major socio-economic and regional
inequalities. The rising oil prices on the world market since 2002 have an
impact on the favorable development.
In 2005, Mexico, together with the other NAFTA countries, signed the
so-called Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America agreement, which
aims to expand cooperation in, among other things, the security field.
In the July 2006 presidential election, conservative Felipe
Calderón narrowly defeated left-wing candidate Andrés Manuel López Obrador, who
refused to recognize the result, and there were widespread protests before
Felipe Calderón's victory was finally declared in court in September.
Mexico was hit hard by the international financial crisis, but the economy
recovered. One of the country's biggest problems is the widespread drug
crime. Mexico is the transit country for drugs from South America on its way to
the United States, and the trade is controlled by a series of extremely brutal
gangs fighting both each other and the authorities. It is estimated that up to
50,000 people have died as a result of drug-related violence since 2006
(2014). Especially the cities close to the US border are hard hit.