American Civil War

Discussion in 'World History' started by EQandcivfanatic, Oct 22, 2002.

  1. EQandcivfanatic

    EQandcivfanatic Zailing Captain Retired Moderator

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2002
    Messages:
    11,578
    Location:
    On the Zee
    I am just curious on other people's views on the civil war.

    I for one believe that the South had all rights tio suceede from the United States.

    In my opinion the war was over states's rights and not about slavery until the Emacipation Proclamation.

    After all, If i joined a club, then later me and a few other did not like the rules of the club, wouldn't i have all rights to break away and form a club of my own?

    I just want to know other people's views on the war.

    Also I am curious who you think the best general of the war was. IF any of you say McClellan then you don't know your history, as McClellan was the worst general in American history.
     
  2. God

    God God

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2001
    Messages:
    1,354
    I always thought the war was fought for economic reasons and that the North wanted to put tarriffs on the south.

    Side note- A man named Toqueville (sp? something like that) came from France. He's well-known. He came and analyzed American society in the 1830's and pointed out economic tensions between the North and South and suggested if they don't do something to mend it there is a chance of split. He was published in the 1840s. Intelligent man. :)
     
  3. Sultan Bhargash

    Sultan Bhargash Trickster Reincarnated

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2001
    Messages:
    7,608
    Location:
    Missing The Harem
    It was partly an argument over whether slavery would be allowed in new states that led to the civil war. When people simplify and say "states rights" was the cause, well, that was the major right they were debating, the right to have slaves.

    Now, I personally feel that there was an incentive for the North in having industrialized, that they wanted to create a society where more people would be "slaves to wages" than in the oligarchic south. Nor can we believe the south would have been able to carry on with slavery much longer if it had somehow "won" the civil war: the rest of the white world had given it up by 1888.

    I am personally SICK of the Civil War in every way shape and form. I am SICK, in this age of America United, to see people still trolling around with their Rebel Flags. There will be no secession from America, and if states want to assert their rights such as California's medical marijuana or Nevada's legal prostitution or Oregon's assisted suicide they have a bit of leeway to do so.

    Meanwhile, it is time to dismantle these unpatriotic rebel flags once and for all, and bury the ghost of this nearly 150 year old great great great grandfather's memory.
     
  4. Ancient Grudge

    Ancient Grudge Its all in this life

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2002
    Messages:
    2,306
    Location:
    (S)hatfield,England
    Secession was legal it was in the contstituion. So the south had every right to secede.
    Some people would say Jackson but in my opinion he isnt as he always incurred to many casualities which for the south was disasterous. I think Robert.E.Lee was the best general of the civil war as he kept the south fighting till 1865 plus his use of tactics are still taught at west point.
     
  5. Steve Winer

    Steve Winer Shock the monkey...

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2002
    Messages:
    394
    Location:
    Knoxville, TN, USA
    I believe General Lee was the best general in the war. If the south had more resources, like the union did, the south, in my opinion, would hav probably won the war.

    P.S. I am not saying this just because I live in the south. I have studied a lot about the Civil War.
     
  6. knowltok2

    knowltok2 Deity

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2002
    Messages:
    2,936
    Location:
    Columbus, Ohio, USA
    States rights, both slavery and tarriffs were at issue.

    As for the south not being able to maintain slavery forever, likely correct, but imagine how much longer the inequality (still not fully remedied) would have lasted.

    Harry Turtledove has done some excellent work with the South winning in his Great War series that actually starts with, "How Few Remain." A great read if you like alternative history.

    As for Greatest General, Lee certainly comes to mind at first. A case can be made for Sherman on the Union side.

    I'm not an expert on the legalities of it, but for better or worse, the South chose to attack Union troops, thus starting the war. What the outcome would have been if the South would have tried a peaceful walkout would have been very interesting.
     
  7. gr8ful wes

    gr8ful wes Deity

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2002
    Messages:
    2,527
    Location:
    PA, USA
    Meanwhile, it is time to dismantle these unpatriotic rebel flags once and for all, and bury the ghost of this nearly 150 year old great great great grandfather's memory."

    I am with you.

    This whole attitude of the south gonna rise again is bunk. The flag is for traitors. Imagine folks waving the nazi flag in germany(yeah, its a little different) "the war of northern aggression" yeah right.

    I have made a few good observations about the south durring this war though. There generals were decent. for example, Lee insisted that civilians and private homes in Gettysburg not be destroyed or harrassed. And generally, the johnny rebs were better shots than many of the urban yankees(PA boys, Maine folks, and Green Mountain boys werent too bad) The southerners probably got good because they shot all those varmints for food(possums, squirrels, racoons etc.):lol:
     
  8. Alcibiaties of Athenae

    Alcibiaties of Athenae Imperator

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2001
    Messages:
    5,995
    Location:
    Looking for da man
    "States Rights" is a smoke screen used for years, nowhere in the 10th amendment is this supported (this is often used as the "legal right" to suceed).

    The matter of 'States Rights' only came up when it became clear that the status quo of states admission (one slave for every free state admitted) was coming to an end.
    Dred Scott was NEVER going to be repeated, nor bleeding Kansas, so when the South saw this, they tried to cut and run.

    In fact, the South used the buffalo of "States Rights" to get slavery leagal in the early days of the United States, agaisnt the wishes of Franklin and others, much to our everlasting sorrow and disgrace.

    I'm sorry, I can't feel ONE iota of sympathy for the South, they went to war for ONE reason, to keep a dog chain around a black man's neck, "States Rights" is just bull, and they proved it during the reconstruction with the Jim Crow laws.

    The Two best officers in the Civil war were Robert E. Lee for the Confederacy, and Major-General John F. Reynolds, killed on the first day of Gettysburg, for the union.
     
  9. AnarchyBoy

    AnarchyBoy Despot

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2002
    Messages:
    65
    Location:
    Philadelphia
    At the time of the Civil War, people equated states' rights with personal freedom, which is why it was such a hot-button issue back then. As for the "right" to secede from the union, many Northerners were in favor of letting the Confederacy go without a fight. Lincoln, however, realized that this would have set a bad precedent. States can't just "leave" the country when things aren't going their way.
    In retrospect, if the South had successfully gained its independence, they probably would have remained a confederated or "loosely knit" group of individual states who worked together when they had common interests and fought with eachother when they were opposed. The North American continent would probably be a feudalistic, war-like place with factions forever fighting eachother to maintain the balance of power. Without our unity in this country, we're nothing.
    As for the confederate flags, there's nothing wrong with pride in one's culture. The problem is that often the confederate flag seems to be a symbol not of southern pride but of racial oppression, which of course is unacceptable.
     
  10. Sultan Bhargash

    Sultan Bhargash Trickster Reincarnated

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2001
    Messages:
    7,608
    Location:
    Missing The Harem
    I agree with those who praise Lee's generalship and cite the South as having superior tactics and that they would have won in other circumstances. The North certainly had very little strategy besides attrition, sending troops over and over to be killed, which worked then but would not work these days.

    Two things undid the south - one is superior spies/intellegence from the North. It is believed they had spies doing the supply ordering for the south and purposely botching it. Second, and here is where I am loathe to say this, but the north had moral force on its side. This doesn't always win wars but it seems to average out on top. Who is going to fight harder, the guy who wants to keep his slaves or the guy who wants to keep his country whole? I know I havent written this paragraph out using reason and there are places where you could argue but that is the long and short of it.

    I also wonder about the fate of slavery in a victorious south. All along in these Civil war posts I have been saying that slavery wouldn't survive world pressure and economic infeasibility but there is perhaps something else that might have happened: the children or grandchildren of the rebels, moved by affection, may have protested for the slaves' freedom (and would have intermarried enough to end up wanting their relatives secure freedom). And what a different world that would be, if the descendants of slaves were not viewed as the triggers of a great defeat in the south but as the suddenly realized equals that, for example, women became after WW2.
     
  11. knowltok2

    knowltok2 Deity

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2002
    Messages:
    2,936
    Location:
    Columbus, Ohio, USA
    Sultan, I won't argue with your two reasons, but I do think a powerful third would be the larger size and industrialization of the North. Actually I would mark that as #1. Without it, the South could have won.
     
  12. Sultan Bhargash

    Sultan Bhargash Trickster Reincarnated

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2001
    Messages:
    7,608
    Location:
    Missing The Harem
    Agreed. Well, you would either have the north industrial, in which case, by virtue of having slaves, the south would have better production, or you would have the south industrial. The thing is, I tend to believe that when you cross the threshold to an industrial economy, slavery is not only unessential but it actually becomes a liability. Why house and feed your workers when you can make them pay for homes and food and still work them to death?
     
  13. EQandcivfanatic

    EQandcivfanatic Zailing Captain Retired Moderator

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2002
    Messages:
    11,578
    Location:
    On the Zee
    I agree that General Lee was the best general of the war.

    I agree that the South will never rise again too, mainly because we have nothing to rise up about.

    Sherman was dirty, scumbag. He left the South in ruins, burning every thing in the way to the South. Of course that little detail is usually mentioned in a small paragraph or a caption under a picture in the history books.

    In a victorious South, like Turtledove has recognized (loved his books), slavery could not have lasted long any ways. I agree with those people. Slavery was on its way out all across the world. The South would have had to give it up at one point.

    I also would like to know what people think about the weapontry of the Civil War. Gatling guns, trench warfare and repeaters. Just curious if anyone knows about other weapons used in the Civil War that have evolved into modern form.
     
  14. Sultan Bhargash

    Sultan Bhargash Trickster Reincarnated

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2001
    Messages:
    7,608
    Location:
    Missing The Harem
    Sherman was heavy handed, it is opening a can of worms to compare his deeds with the A-bombing of Japan or the salting of Carthage - basically a maniacal devastation in order to say "Don't ever let this happen again!"
     
  15. EQandcivfanatic

    EQandcivfanatic Zailing Captain Retired Moderator

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2002
    Messages:
    11,578
    Location:
    On the Zee
    maniacal devastion is correct in all three cases.
     
  16. gr8ful wes

    gr8ful wes Deity

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2002
    Messages:
    2,527
    Location:
    PA, USA
    "I also would like to know what people think about the weapontry of the Civil War. Gatling guns, trench warfare and repeaters. Just curious if anyone knows about other weapons used in the Civil War that have evolved into modern form."

    I understant that this war saw the first " Sharp shooter" Other wars had marksmen for sure, but This was the first group of federal troops that specialized in the use of the Sharps rifle for the purpose of long range accurate killing. (the same gun made fameous by the buffalo runners of the 1880's) Many of these fellows could shoot up to 500-800 yards, and they loved officers. If these guys were captured, they were often killed outright. They were considered murderers by enemies of both sides. If they were captured by enemy Sharp Shooters though, they were treated like members of the same fraternity. Interesting little tidbit.
     
  17. onejayhawk

    onejayhawk Afflicted with reason

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2002
    Messages:
    13,700
    Location:
    next to George Bush's parents
    The Cival war was fought with single shot weaponery throughout. Much of the development that led to the revolver, Gatling's gun and the repeating rifle was done during the war, but was not ready for production until several years later in most cases.

    The Civil war also saw an inversion of the usual rules of range. In most periods, as now, the big guns had the greatest range. During the Cival War, the new minee ball rifle gave the infantry a longer effective range than the smoothbore cannon. Indeed, artillery was often just behind the lines, firing grapeshot through gaps. This is in effect a shotgun, which can be devistating in close range.

    In comparison, even volly fire rifle was effective at several times this range. The whole concept of skirmishing, firing from cover, from ditches, trenches, fencerows, etc got a thorough working over. given any pause, both sides could be expected to throw anything movable into some form of breastwork. The Confederacy, with a manpower disadvantage, was more dependent on accuracy, but both sides relied heavily on aimed rifle fire. This would all change again with the advent of rifled, explosive artillery.

    I had not heard your detail about sniper units, but it sounds plausible. Prior to this point in history, there was no bounty on officer's heads. Rather the reverse.It was unsporting I guess.

    J
     
  18. EQandcivfanatic

    EQandcivfanatic Zailing Captain Retired Moderator

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2002
    Messages:
    11,578
    Location:
    On the Zee
    I never knew about the sharp-shooters either.
     
  19. Dantius

    Dantius Chieftain

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2002
    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    Parts Unknown *dun dun dun*
    It doesn't really matter if the South could have managed to win or not. A central federal government is needed. They wanted too much state powers. When the federal government said "No more slavery", the states wanted the power to contest that. They couldn't, thus, the civil war began.

    If you read history books pre-Civil War, you would know that most politicians sort of knew it was going to happen, but tried to push it under the carpet during their terms with such things like the Missouri Compromise. The south already hated the fact that the federal government paid off all depts that the states had, even though they had already paid theirs off independantly. Then the tariffs came in... raising tensions. Most knew that the abolishing of slavery would set the south off - nobody knew what the reaction would be. They sort of knew that slavery had to be abolished sooner or later, but they didn't want to be around as the politician presiding, since they knew a civil war would be devistating.

    Slavery *did* spark the war, but it wasn't fought purely for that way of life. It was just the final straw for the southern states.

    My view on the civil war - it was inevidable. Some bash Lincoln for not doing anything to help the civil war, when they should blame the presidents and politicians before him for building the burden. Lincoln couldn't stop something that was 50 years in the making - he couldn't prevent it, either, unless he wanted to just keep sliding proclaimations like the Missouri Compromise into public avail.

    If the south would have won, it wouldn't have lasted very long. Confederacy does not work, and can not, work. The Articles of Confederation and our old government proved that - we had no outer country connections and no leader. No commerce. It was terrible. The central government unites the states - though people hate it, it is essential for democracy.

    I'm not a big fan of the civil war - but all it really did is managed to kill millions of people and innovate new technology, such as submarines.
     
  20. AnarchyBoy

    AnarchyBoy Despot

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2002
    Messages:
    65
    Location:
    Philadelphia
    I've always thought the most interesting advance in weaponry during the Civil War was the Iron Clad. The Monitor and the Merrimac meet up and shoot at each other for four hours. The cannonballs which would have sunk a frigate or a galleon bounce off harmlessly. Eventually the two get tired of fighting and sail away. In four hours, every navy in the world has become completely obsolete.
     

Share This Page