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Old 02-20-2007, 10:13 PM   #76
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Originally posted by maycocksean


It's all here, really, in the two words "unpopular" and "unwinnable."

The Civil War was unpopular in the North in the fall of 1864. But unlike our current conflict, there was no confusion--no mixed signals about why we went to war, there was no sketchy justification for "invading the South" in the way that there was for invading Iraq. The war was vital for the survival of the nation, and it had a moral authority (especially after 1863) that this war simply doesn't have. That is why history judges Lincoln well for fighting an "unpopular" war.

The Civil War was also considered "unwinnable" by some in the North in 1864. But it was not "unwinnable" in the sense that Iraq is. The war in Iraq could be won if we were at war WITH Iraq. If Iraq were our enemy, instead of our ostensible "friend" that we are "helping" then we could engage in the sort of sweeping, conventional warfare (with much higher civilian casualties which would be considered more "acceptable" under such circumstances). The kind of war we are in right now is very hard to "win." (I'd be curious to know if anyone could tell us about a historical precedent in which this type of war was won).


will you stop with your astute historical analysis and attention to detail and nuance? all that matters is that we had two presidents who were republicans enmeshed in certain unpopular military actions and who aren't terribly fond of habeus corpus. therefore, one is the other, and where one is now the greatest, the other will be the 2nd greatest in 100 years.

sheesh.
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Old 02-20-2007, 10:20 PM   #77
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Originally posted by Irvine511




will you stop with your astute historical analysis and attention to detail and nuance? all that matters is that we had two presidents who were republicans enmeshed in certain unpopular military actions and who aren't terribly fond of habeus corpus. therefore, one is the other, and where one is now the greatest, the other will be the 2nd greatest in 100 years.

sheesh.
Right. I repent in dust and ashes.
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Old 02-20-2007, 11:35 PM   #78
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Quote:
Originally posted by maycocksean


It's all here, really, in the two words "unpopular" and "unwinnable."

The Civil War was unpopular in the North in the fall of 1864. But unlike our current conflict, there was no confusion--no mixed signals about why we went to war, there was no sketchy justification for "invading the South" in the way that there was for invading Iraq. The war was vital for the survival of the nation, and it had a moral authority (especially after 1863) that this war simply doesn't have. That is why history judges Lincoln well for fighting an "unpopular" war.

The Civil War was also considered "unwinnable" by some in the North in 1864. But it was not "unwinnable" in the sense that Iraq is. The war in Iraq could be won if we were at war WITH Iraq. If Iraq were our enemy, instead of our ostensible "friend" that we are "helping" then we could engage in the sort of sweeping, conventional warfare (with much higher civilian casualties which would be considered more "acceptable" under such circumstances). The kind of war we are in right now is very hard to "win." (I'd be curious to know if anyone could tell us about a historical precedent in which this type of war was won).
Most of the USA supported the justifications given for going to war in Iraq in 2003 and 2004, while most of the country in 1861 did not support Lincolns decision to use military force to unite the country, or later to free the slaves etc.

The Security of Kuwait and Saudi Arabia is vital to the survival of the entire global economy and there for the United States and the rest of the world. The United States had already fought one war against Saddam in which over 500,000 US troops were sent to the region to remove Saddam's military from Kuwait. Under no circumstance could such a situation be repeated given the huge risk at stake for the planet given the dependency on Persian Gulf oil supplies. Saddam's compliance with UN Security council resolutions which included the verfiable disarmament of all WMD were necessary for the security of Kuwait and Saudi Arabia and there for the rest of the planet. Enforcement of these resolutions through means other than removal of the regime failed which is why the invasion in 2003 was necessary.

While the Civil War directly impacted the survival of the United States, and would decades later impact the planet in many ways, the loss of Persian Gulf Energy supply would have a sudden and immediate impact on the entire global economy that would throw it into a depression with incaculable consequences.

The current war in Iraq is fundamentally the same as the war in Afghanistan. The Untied States is also friends with Afghanistan as well. The United States has already engaged in large scale conventional warfare in Iraq, especially during the initial invasion.

Both the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are counter insurgency efforts that are the most difficult to win and require large amounts of time and resources. The United States defeated insurgencies in the Philipines and South Vietnam, while the United Kingdom has defeated insurgencies in Malaysia and Northern Ireland. Many people fail to realize that the Viet Cong, the South Vietnamese insurgency, had largely been defeated by 1970 and ceaced to exist by 1972. After that time, North Vietnam was directly carrying on all the fighting. South Vietnam was only overrun by North Vietnamese forces in a large scale conventional military assault 2 years after the United States had abandoned South Vietnam.


In any event, Iraq is no more "unwinnable" than Afghanistan. Victory in intra-state conflicts involves a lot more elements than simply military force, but with time and necessary resources, peace and stability can be achieved.
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Old 02-21-2007, 12:36 AM   #79
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Quote:
Originally posted by maycocksean


It's all here, really, in the two words "unpopular" and "unwinnable."

The Civil War was unpopular in the North in the fall of 1864. But unlike our current conflict, there was no confusion--no mixed signals about why we went to war, there was no sketchy justification for "invading the South" in the way that there was for invading Iraq. The war was vital for the survival of the nation, and it had a moral authority (especially after 1863) that this war simply doesn't have. That is why history judges Lincoln well for fighting an "unpopular" war.

The Civil War was also considered "unwinnable" by some in the North in 1864. But it was not "unwinnable" in the sense that Iraq is. The war in Iraq could be won if we were at war WITH Iraq. If Iraq were our enemy, instead of our ostensible "friend" that we are "helping" then we could engage in the sort of sweeping, conventional warfare (with much higher civilian casualties which would be considered more "acceptable" under such circumstances). The kind of war we are in right now is very hard to "win." (I'd be curious to know if anyone could tell us about a historical precedent in which this type of war was won).
Actually I have to disagree with some of your points. The justification of the war was quite often considered very sketchy by Northerners and was also seen as an invasion of a foreign power by many critics. To think that that average Northerner cared about the issue of slavery is false. There was very little sense they were fighting a moral battle. At best, most fought to preserve the Union.
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Old 02-21-2007, 02:04 AM   #80
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Quote:
Originally posted by STING2
The Security of Kuwait and Saudi Arabia is vital to the survival of the entire global economy and there for the United States and the rest of the world. The United States had already fought one war against Saddam in which over 500,000 US troops were sent to the region to remove Saddam's military from Kuwait. Under no circumstance could such a situation be repeated given the huge risk at stake for the planet given the dependency on Persian Gulf oil supplies. Saddam's compliance with UN Security council resolutions which included the verfiable disarmament of all WMD were necessary for the security of Kuwait and Saudi Arabia and there for the rest of the planet. Enforcement of these resolutions through means other than removal of the regime failed which is why the invasion in 2003 was necessary.
Please, for the sake of everyone's sanity:

GET A NEW TALKING POINT!
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Old 02-21-2007, 02:35 AM   #81
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Re: Greatest US President

Quote:
Originally posted by MrsSpringsteen
John F. Kennedy edges Bill Clinton for the #3 spot
I consider myself to be a HUGE Kennedy buff.

But I do not agree with this. I do not understand how he can be #3.

I think as we move further away from his assasination and think about the 1,000 days he was President, this sentiment will change.

#1 Space Program
#2 Test Ban Treaty
#3 Civil Rights (Started by him, Carried out by Johnson)
#4 Bay of Pigs (huge Failure)
#5 Assasination Attempts on Castro (Huge Failure, may have backfired on him)
#6 Cuban Missile Crisis (The American Public was denied the information that demonstrated he sold out, removing missiles from Turkey in exchange for the removal of missiles from Cuba. This made it look to the public the blockade forced the Russians to remove their missiles, which is not true.)
#7 Most historians acknowledge that Kennedy was manhandled by Kruschev in their meetings. Some advisors believe that the prescription drugs Kennedy was taking at the time for his ailments completely screwed him up in these meetings.)
#8 His multiple affairs with women, including a Nazi Spy (If that had been public he would not have been elected, Mistresses of Mobsters ect....he would not have been reelected had he lived)

Ted Sorenson and Richard Goodwin his speech writeres deserve the Credit for his inspirational speeches. Bobby deserves the credit for Civil Rights.....

His death with his beautiful wife and children and our desire for camolot have shielded him.

I have now developed a love hate repationship with the man. LOL
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Old 02-21-2007, 06:19 AM   #82
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Quote:
Originally posted by AEON


Actually I have to disagree with some of your points. The justification of the war was quite often considered very sketchy by Northerners and was also seen as an invasion of a foreign power by many critics. To think that that average Northerner cared about the issue of slavery is false. There was very little sense they were fighting a moral battle. At best, most fought to preserve the Union.
I actually agree with all YOUR points. And I don't think I was contradicting them in my earlier post. It's true that many in the North opposed the war and disagreed with the reasons for going in. But those reasons--primarily to keep the Union intact--were crystal clear to everyone. Lincoln himself said that if he could save the Union without freeing the slaves he would do it. Of course he opposed slavery, and later on he used the Emancipation Proclomation as part of his war strategy but there was no sense that "the public has been mislead." There was never the sense that Lincoln "manipulated" or "deceived" the public somehow into entering the conflict. It was pretty clear cut case of the South "starting it" right down to the shots fired on Ft. Sumter.

This has not been the case in the Iraq war. Many people in the U.S. felt the Bush and his cronies were not straightforward about their reasons for going to war in Iraq. The WMD, the Al-Queda connection, 9/11, all of those were considered questionable as to their truth. In the Civil War there was no "debate" as to whether the South seceded from the Union or not, there was no "questionable evidence" as to whether the Union was indeed torn asunder.
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Old 02-21-2007, 08:13 AM   #83
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Quote:
Originally posted by STING2

Many people fail to realize that the Viet Cong, the South Vietnamese insurgency, had largely been defeated by 1970 and ceaced to exist by 1972.


or, you're historically incorrect, and it's the rest of the world that's right and you're wrong.

but you've been disproved on this point before, yet continue to repeat it.

same old same old.
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Old 02-21-2007, 08:17 AM   #84
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I don't mind if people love Lincoln, because, generally speaking, he's a predecessor of the modern Democratic Party.

That's because, in the 1870s, there was a massive ideological switch between the Democratic and Republican parties. Conservative Northern Democrats, pissed off at being in the same party as Southerners, who were viewed as the plague back then, flooded the Republican Party. Then, equally pissed off by that gesture, Northern Liberal Republicans "retreated" to the void left in the Democratic Party. Southern politicians stayed put, which is why "Southern Democrat" became generally synonymous with "conservative." However, since the 1960s, when many of those conservative Southern Democrats opposed desegregation and the Civil Rights Act of 1964, they've generally switched to the Republican Party. Strom Thurmond is an example of those who switched, while Zell Miller is an example of one of those holdouts (ideologically, of course, since he didn't actually serve back then).

That aside, though, I dislike the concept of the "Greatest U.S. President," because it smacks of romanticism. And--I hate to say, but it's probably true--the only reason that Lincoln and JFK are loved so much is because their lives are fit for an ancient Greek tragedy; that is, because they were assassinated.

And, just to note, Grant was a great general and a terrible president. He always ranks as one of the worst amongst historians.
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Old 02-21-2007, 08:50 AM   #85
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My vote is George W. - everyday I hear from the Whithouse Press briefings and Hannity and Rushbo how great the war on terror is going and don't forget we have the insurgents on the run, we truly have Democracy on the march in the middle east












*wakes up and prays the last six years was just a real bad dream*
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Old 02-21-2007, 09:04 AM   #86
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Quote:
Originally posted by Ormus


And, just to note, Grant was a great general and a terrible president. He always ranks as one of the worst amongst historians.
This is unfortunately true.
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Old 02-21-2007, 10:26 AM   #87
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Quote:
Originally posted by maycocksean


So what sentiment IS being taught in our public schools?
An excellent question to pose to those that tell us in this forum that war is NEVER justified.

Other than that, considering how many Americans can't point directly to Germany on a globe, or know what the Enola Gay was...I'm not sure what's being taught.

And I'm not even going to bring up Holocaust deniers, Pearl Harbor conspiracists, neo-Nazis or Hiroshima revisionists which, so far, remain a much, much smaller minority in America than in some other regions of the world.
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Old 02-21-2007, 11:06 AM   #88
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An excellent question to pose to those that tell us in this forum that war is NEVER justified.

Other than that, considering how many Americans can't point directly to Germany on a globe, or know what the Enola Gay was...I'm not sure what's being taught.

And I'm not even going to bring up Holocaust deniers, Pearl Harbor conspiracists, neo-Nazis or Hiroshima revisionists which, so far, remain a much, much smaller minority in America than in some other regions of the world.

please, regal us with stories about the greatness of public schools when you were a child.

also, please don't include anyone on the Left in your laundry list in the 2nd paragraph. most of those people align themselves with the Far Right.
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Old 02-21-2007, 11:22 AM   #89
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Quote:
Originally posted by maycocksean


These two are a little short on facts.

The only way that Lincoln "started the Civil War" to free the slaves was by being Abraham Lincoln. The South hated Lincoln and South Carolina vowed to secede if he won. The only way he could've avoided war and still won the presidency was to be someone else.

Furthermore, Lincoln more than most of his contemporaries on his side of the conflict took a much more moderate and compassionate stance towards the Southerners, as people. If anyone would have avoided war if he could have it would have been Lincoln, and if there would have been anyone that could have done a great job of healing the wounds of the war, it would have been Lincoln.

As to FDR, by the time he was elected to office, the Depression had been going on for three years already. The fact that he happened to be in charge during an economic crisis that began three years before he came into office (and was arguably worsened by the previous president's insistence on a hands-off, things-will-get-better-on-their-own approach) has no reflection on his leadership.

As to his jumping into World War II to save his presidency. He was relected in 1940. Pearl Harbor and the U.S. entrance into the war was in 1941. He didn't need to "save" his presidency. He'd already secured his third term and had no worries about another election until 1944.

It's true that FDR was eager to get involved in the conflict while the rest of the U.S. wasn't but as others have pointed out, it's a good thing we did get involved.
First one, Lincoln.. You can't I say was short on facts because it was posed (and was) a question. Like I said maybe someone could've kept the country together without the war. That would've earned the number one spot. It's not like I wanted him much lower.

Second one... FDR ran for election by claiming he could get the US out of the depression. Everything he tried failed. As to saving his presidency; I'm talking about legacy. Had WWII not happened and the depression lingered and he was voted out in 1944 or simply chose not to run, his legacy would've been of futility and failure and he knew that.

And I believe it was a good thing we got involved in WWII as well. It disgusts me how most Europeans and even many Americans have come to diminish the US's role in the war. I'm just saying that I believe (and if history doesn't directly bear it out, it certainly strongly indicates) FDR was mighty happy to have a war to fight.
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Old 02-21-2007, 11:41 AM   #90
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Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511




or, you're historically incorrect, and it's the rest of the world that's right and you're wrong.

but you've been disproved on this point before, yet continue to repeat it.

same old same old.
He is most definately not historically incorrect. Nor is "the rest of the world" saying that the VC was over as an insurgency by 1972.

PS, there's nothing wrong with the Pledge Of Allegiance or patriotism.
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