Pablo Benito Juarez was a prominent Mexican politician. He was born in 1806. His parents were Indian peasants, and he was also a shepherd when he was young. He graduated from the seminary, and then earned a law degree at the Institute of Sciences and Arts in the city of Oaxaca, Mexico. For a time, he was engaged in the law practice and worked as a lawyer in the Supreme Court of the Republic. In 1833, he received his bachelor’s degree. In 1847 – 1852 Pablo was a Governor of the State of Oaxaca.
Juarez took an active part in organizing resistance to the U.S. forces during the Mexican-American War. He opposed the dictatorship of A. Santa Ana, and for this he was deported from the country in 1853.
Since the beginning of the bourgeois revolution in 1854, he returned to Mexico and joined the army of the liberals. In 1855, he was a Minister of Justice and Religious Affairs. He even developed the so-called law of Juarez, depriving the clergy and the generals of special privileges. At the end of 1857, he was elected for a chairman position of the Supreme Court.
In 1858, Pablo Benito Juarez became the head of the government. He played a major role in the defeat of the reactionaries during the Civil War. He also worked on the “Reform Laws,” which encouraged the nationalization of church property and the separation of church and state.
In 1858-1860, there were two governments in Mexico: the Juarez’s government of in Vera Cruz and the Conservative government in Mexico City. The reactionary conservative government enjoyed the active support of Vatican and Spain, which hoped to restore Spanish rule over Mexico. This government was also recognized by other European nations. The Juarez’s government at that time was only recognized by the United States, which feared that conservatives would win and thus strengthen European influence in Mexico. They were going to turn it into its own sphere of influence. Having won the Civil War, the government of Juarez gained recognition by Britain, France and Prussia.
In 1861, Juarez became the president of the country and retained the post until his death. During the Anglo-French-Spanish intervention in 1861-1867, he was the organizer of the popular struggle against the occupation. He also did a great job of rebuilding the country, which had suffered from many years of war. Juarez entered the history of Mexico as a staunch fighter for democracy and independence. He worked hard to strengthen its sovereignty.