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Ferdinand Maximilian
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    (July 6, 1832-June 19, 1867)
    Appointed the post of governor-general of the Kingdom of Lombardy-Venetia (1857-1859)
    Given the monarchy of Mexico by a Mexican delegation with support of Napoleon III of France (1864)
    Executed by Mexican nationalists (1867)
    He was fired by his own brother for his liberal policies during his control of the Kingdom of Lombardy-Venetia (1859).
    He accepted the Mexican throne without really knowing that Mexico was in a violent Civil War caused by the Mexican republic being unable to pay for their huge foreign debts.
    He spent his time writing a manual of court etiquette rather than reading books on Mexico given to him during his journey to Mexico.
    He was unaware that he was called to Mexico to help establish a pro-French regime after the English and Spanish withdrew from the area knowing Mexico would never pay their debts.
    He and his French supporters defied the Monroe Doctrine while the Americans were in the middle of their own civil war.
    He never really had strong control over Mexico and was its leader in name only.
    He lost many battles because his generals were disorganized and worked against each other.
    He thought his liberal reforms would attract dissenting Mexicans to his cause.
    He was ditched by the French after they disagreed with his support of liberal reforms, which included religious freedom and suffrage beyond the landowning class.
    He was hated by the Mexicans for not being of Mexican heritage.
    He came to Mexico with good intentions and truly wanted to see Mexico see an age of peace and prosperity.
    Upon his capture and subsequent death sentence, many political leaders in Europe sent telegrams to Mexico pleading for his life to be spared, but all were ignored.
    His last words were: 'I forgive everyone, and I ask everyone to forgive me. May my blood which is about to be shed, be for the good of the country. Viva Mexico, viva la independencia!'

Credit: Captain Howdy

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