I learned recently (by having an answer marked wrong in Pub Quiz) that the conflict which was called the Mexican War when I was in school is now called the Mexican-American War. My question:

When, why, and how was the name changed? Is "Mexican-American War" now the official name? Who decides on the official names of wars anyway? Is it the Department of War (now Defense), the Department of State, some academic body?

According to the question Has anyone ever named a war after their own country or faction?:

For example, during the Mexican-American War, the Mexicans referred to it as the American Invasion, and Americans referred to it as the Mexican War. After America won, we decided to call it the Mexican-American War.

If that's true, my sixth grade textbook was about a century out of date.

  • 9
    Wikipedia lists both these names, plus two others, as equally valid names for the war. In other words: "You was robbed." Commented Jun 25, 2016 at 3:39


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