The military history of Mexico geographically spans one-third of the North American continent over the last 5 centuries. Whereas race was not a contributing factor to warfare before the arrival of Europeans, religion played an integral role in the culture of the Aztecs and their neighbors, including organized warfare. Since Mexico was drawn into the European orbit much earlier than the rest of North America, its history had a primary impact on Native Americans, setting trends often followed by the United States and Canada.

The Roman Catholicism of Spain has had a profound ripple effect across Latin American culture, including Mexico and the southwestern United States. Racial distinctions have sometimes been glossed over by a shared faith, but often they have also been integral factors ...

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