The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 62, July 1958 - April, 1959

Southwestern Historical Quarterly

became apparent to the President's critics until much later. The
injudiciousness of the House of Representatives in this same vein
is shown by its proposal of February, 1842, to extend the frontier
by means of sixteen military posts and colonies-this at a time
when Texas was hard pressed to maintain the frontier where it
was against Indian and Mexican depredations.9
Santa Anna, in his recently recovered position of power in
Mexico, chose to view the fiasco of the Santa F6 expedition as a
hostile move on the part of the disloyal colony to the north. This
could be utilized to explain away any overt Mexican moves against
Texas. He stated this view concisely in a letter written on Feb-
ruary 6, 1842:
I believe war to be necessary, I believe it to be a measure indis-
pensable to the salvation of Mexico and that her government will not
faithfully perform her duties if she does not strain her resources
to the utmost boldly to enforce a full confession of her justice.20
The spirit of war against his old enemy was again with Santa
Anna.
In a sense Mexico's condition was as bad as the Texans'. The
extremely limited financial position of both areas rendered their
extreme bombastic claims and promises ludicrous. Internal con-
ditions within Mexico were reflected by the fact that Santa Anna
had forbidden the payment of all debts except the English
claim, and these foreign debts amounted to some twenty million
dollars. The expenses of his government were twenty-four million
per year and his annual receipts six million.2. Even considering
the possible inaccuracies of the above figures, it still remains true
that the Mexican treasury had learned no lesson from the French
invasion of Mexico caused by non-payment of debts in 1838.
The major reason for the financial condition of Mexico was
the existence of the institution by which Santa Anna hoped to
punish Texas-the army. Contrary to the almost total reliance on
the militia in 'Texas, Mexico depended only secondarily upon
such a force. She kept instead a large standing army organized
1lHouston to House of Representatives, February 2, 1842, ibid., 467.
20Niles' Weekly Register, March 26, 1842.
2lIbid.

Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 62, July 1958 - April, 1959. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101173/. Accessed August 2, 2015.