Saturday, February 24, 2007

de ja vu - Political climate during America's Civil War

Fascinating history lesson from Henry P. Wickham, Jr.'s column, "America's Neo-Copperheads" on American Thinker today. Some excerpts below that eerily echo today's Congressional and anti-war activists' behavior today. I would say they are deliberately repeating history, save that teaching American History is lost in our PC educational curriculum.

Copperheads (aptly named after the poisonous snake) demanded an immediate cessation of hostilities, and they reviled Lincoln for continuing the military campaign against the South. One mode of attack was to ridicule his intelligence and appearance. George McClellan, the Democratic nominee in 1864, referred to Lincoln as an idiot and "the original gorilla." (p.183) (italics in the original). The constant references of our Neo-Copperheads to President Bush's supposed lack of intelligence and his "chimp"-like characteristics are nothing original. In the dark days of the summer of 1864, even the sitting Attorney General, Lincoln's version of Chuck Hagel or John Warner, stated that the country's greatest need was a "a competent leader."

The very pretext for the war itself became an issue then as now. Shortly after the South's secession and the shelling of Fort Sumter, maintenance of the Union was the primary reason for subduing the South. However, by late 1862 and 1863, the year of the Emancipation Proclamation, the moral issues of slavery and its abolition became the dominant theme of those who supported the war. George H. Pendleton of Ohio, the Copperhead Vice-Presidential candidate in 1864, stated that:

"They have been deliberately deceived into this war ... under the pretense that the war was to be for the Union and the Constitution, when, in fact, it was to be an armed crusade for the abolition of slavery." (p. 80)

The nefarious Lincoln, like President Bush, supposedly had ulterior motives for pursuing the war that were kept from the public. One can imagine the stickers affixed to the Copperhead carriages: "Lincoln Lied, People Died."

As Ms. Weber notes, the Copperheads could never articulate any serious plan for what they would do if successful in stopping the Civil War. Would there be a Union? Would states have nullification rights? Would slavery be extended into new states? Clement Vallandigham, a leading Copperhead, could never get much deeper than

"I am for peace, speedy, immediate honorable PEACE, with all its blessings. (p. 33) (Italics and capitals in the original.)

snip - read in entirety at above link

Like the Civil War Congress, herein lies the most damning parallel of this Congress - the deliberate avoidance of "a plan". The plan that needs to be in place were Iraq to be overrun by radical factions in the wake of troop departure.

Do we know of what our lives would be like with the potential various anti-west haters in charge of different parts of the country? And, the ability of these radicals to hold
ruthless power over the country's natural resources of fresh water and oil supplies?

The options are - an Iraq ruled by radicals, or an infancy Iraq in the free world, striving to become an economic part of the world's economic trade and a willing partner in terrorism intel. I sure know what outcome I desire. Which do you want?

To state it simply, we do not need madmen in charge of strategic natural resources the world needs. Congress refuses to address this possible scenerio, and remains focused only on the "get 'em home" goal. Short sighted visions like this will be the death of us

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