Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Why we fought the Civil War

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Simply put: the South would not abandon slavery without a war. Jamelle Bouie and Jaime Fuller write at The American Prospect:

Today is the 150th anniversary of the final day of the Battle of ‎Gettysburg, and with that in mind, it’s worth remembering the particular actions of Confederate soldiers a week earlier, as they marched north into Pennsylvania.

In the movement that culminated in Gettysburg, Robert E. Lee’s men kidnapped free blacks by the hundreds—men, women, and children. Up to a thousand were captured and forced into labor with the Confederate Army. And during the eventual retreat from Pennsylvania, they were sent South. Once in Virginia, they were returned to their former owners, or if born free, sold into slavery.

What’s key is that this wasn’t the work of bad apples or isolated units. It won approval from field commanders and leaders at the top of the chain. It was so widespread, in fact, that you could legitimately describe these raids as an objective of the campaign, especially given the time and manpower required to carry them out.

So yeah, as we commemorate the lives lost at the battle of Gettysburg, remember this: The same Robert E. Lee who is praised as a reluctant warrior who only fought in defense of his native land was also in command of an army that made kidnapping—and enslavement—a matter of policy.

Written by Leisureguy

4 July 2013 at 3:02 pm

Posted in Government

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