“Making America Great Again”–Part 16

The series written by historian Maj. Sjursen has taken the reader through the early day, the revolution, the convention and the days as the country come to terms with itself……and now he touches on the decade before the outbreak of hostilities that led to what was to be called the American Civil War…….

Part 16 of “American History for Truthdiggers.”

“Shall I tell you what this collision means? They who think that it is accidental, unnecessary, the work of interested or fanatical agitators … mistake the case altogether. It is an irrepressible conflict between opposing and enduring forces, and it means that the United States must and will, sooner or later, become either entirely a slaveholding nation, or entirely a free-labor nation.” —Sen. William Seward of New York (1858)

“It is difficult to achieve a full realization of how Lincoln’s generation stumbled into a ghastly war. … To suppose that the Union could not have been continued or slavery outmoded without the war … is hardly an enlightened assumption. If one questions the term ‘blundering generation,’ let him inquire how many measures of the time he would wish copied or repeated if the period were to be approached with a clean slate and to be lived again.”—Historian J.G. Randall (1940)

https://www.truthdig.com/articles/american-history-for-truthdiggers-a-broken-union-1851-1861/

The war is coming……Abe( a name he hated) Lincoln is coming, so much history and so much change is coming…..

Learn Stuff!

Class Dismissed!

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Closing Thought–13Nov18

As a grad of international relations I find our country’s leaders are woefully misinformed…..this time it was Our Dear Supreme Leader “Trump”……he gets confused easily…….

President Donald Trump confused the Baltic states in Europe with the Balkans—and chastised leaders of the former for starting wars in the 1990s that lead to the break-up of Yugoslavia, French daily Le Monde reported.

Trump reportedly made the mistake in a White House meeting with Dalia Grybauskaitė of Lithuania, Kersti Kaljulaid of Estonia and Raimonds Vējonis of Latvia in April.

https://www.newsweek.com/trump-confused-baltics-balkans-and-accused-confused-leaders-starting-yugoslav-1210939

In case you also are confused let me help out with a couple of short videos…….

In case the confusion is still there….yet another video……

Did any of that help in the understanding?

Class Dismissed!

“Making America Great Again”–Part 15

In this part of the series we move past the Age of Jackson and onto our expansion West…..this part is about the Mexican-American War and its implications…..

Maj. Sjursen looks at this conflict more than most hisztorians care to do so…..there is so much more to this conflict than the history textbooks want to give the student…..

Part 15 of “American History for Truthdiggers.”

The United States of America conquered half of Mexico. There isn’t any way around that fact. The regions of the U.S. most affected by “illegal” immigration—California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas—were once part of the Republic of Mexico. They would have remained so if not for the Mexican-American War (1846-48). Those are the facts, but they hardly tell the story. Few Americans know much about this war, rarely question U.S. motives in the conflict and certainly never consider that much of America’s land—from sea to shining sea—was conquered.

Many readers will dispute this interpretation. Conquest is the natural order of the world, the inevitable outgrowth of clashing civilizations, they will insist. Perhaps. But if true, where does the conquest end, and how can the U.S. proudly celebrate its defense of Europe against the invasions by Germany and/or the Soviet Union? This line of militaristic reasoning—one held by many senior conservative policymakers even today—rests on the slipperiest of slopes. Certainly nations, like individuals, must adhere to a certain moral code, a social contract of behavior.

https://www.truthdig.com/articles/american-history-for-truthdiggers-the-fraudulent-mexican-american-war-1846-48/

Now you have a grasp on what Paul Harvey called “the rest of the story”….

Learn Stuff!

Class Dismissed!

Was 100 Years Enough?

We have just celebrated the end of World War One…here in the US it was a celebration of Veterans Day…..I have been looking back at the war for the last few years…..I am amazed at the death and destruction that war gave the world…..

First let’s look at some misconceptions that have been spread about the war…..

Eleven leading historians explode some major myths that have clouded our understanding of the Great War over the past 100 years…

The killing of Franz Ferdinand was merely the straw that broke the camel’s back

https://www.historyextra.com/period/first-world-war/the-great-misconceptions-of-the-first-world-war/

It has been 100 years since the armistice has been signed…..and the world events show us that war is ever present for various reasons…..but did we learn anything from World War One?

The close of World War I was supposed to end the world’s reliance on arms—and empire. But on the centenary, the Middle East offers proof that this hasn’t happened.

The First World War, which ended a century ago Sunday, was supposed to be a hinge-moment in history: a war to end all wars, and a war to end the imperialism that had shaped the West’s interaction with the world for centuries. After the United States joined the war in 1917, President Wilson insisted it be fought in the cause of self-determination.

But despite its massive toll, the war did not end empire, and many of today’s struggles are rooted in that failure, including Americans’ own imperial investments in war.

https://newrepublic.com/article/152153/100-years-enough

About the only lessons learned by World War One is that there will always be bigger and better weapons and those that will want to possess them and ultimately use them and there will always be those that amass huge fortunes selling those weapons to whoever has the cash…..

Then we ask just what did all those people die for?

Yet the only war of the 20th century more senseless than Vietnam was the so-called Great War, and most especially America’s intervention in an old world tragedy for no good reason whatsoever. That is to say, the Marine heroes of the bloody battle of Belleau Wood did not die “in the trenches for the cause of freedom”.

To the contrary, they died there owing to the fanatical megalomania of President Woodrow Wilson. The latter maneuvered America into the Great War in April 1917 when it was nearly over, and for the purpose of giving himself a grand seat at the peace conference afterward to reshape the world in accordance with his messianic vision.

That was a horrible reason in itself for the 116,000 deaths of American servicemen during the less than 12 months that they were actually engaged in battle at the tail end of the war. The real tragedy of their sacrifice and the real crime of Wilson’s pointless intervention was that it snatched victory for the allies, who didn’t deserve it, from the jaws of stalemate among the militarily exhausted, financially bankrupt and politically demoralized combatants on both sides of the conflict.

https://original.antiwar.com/David_Stockman/2018/11/12/america-should-have-skipped-the-war-not-just-the-ceremony/

I agree with another article I read about the holiday…..

…every public institution will pause and go through the motions of “thanking” America’s veterans; but the whole pretense ignores that the populace hardly cares about foreign policy.

Veterans’ Day – maybe we ought to drop the whole charade. Don’t get me wrong, there will be celebrations a plenty: the NFL will roll out the ubiquitous stadium-sized flags and march uniformed service members in front of the cameras; cities across the nation will hold parades; and millions of Americans will take a moment to go through the motions and “thank” the nation’s soldiers. Sure, the gestures are sometimes genuine and certainly preferable to the alternative. Still, all this martial spectacle misses the salient point hidden just below the surface: the American people are absolutely not engaged with U.S. foreign policy. Most could hardly name the seven countries its military actively bombing, let alone find them on a map.

https://original.antiwar.com/Danny_Sjursen/2018/11/12/one-veterans-plea-get-informed-or-ditch-the-holiday/

Basically to me war makes no sense to me….and I am not alone…..

America spends more on its military than all its enemies put together yet it still can’t win wars. Failed adventures in Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan have drained America’s power and diminished its prestige. The bloated Pentagon budget actually makes us weaker.

Here’s the weird bit: nobody seems to care. If any other government department spent as much and accomplished as little, the populace would be in arms, complaining about wasteful government spending. Instead we mumble “Thank you for your service” and increase defense appropriations.

https://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/war-doesnt-make-sense-anymore/

AMEN!

I say that because I have heard people bad mouthing our veterans and servicemen as basically “freeloaders”…..to this I say “go find a war and go fight then talk to me!”  PERIOD!

Closing Thought–12Nov18

I have been looking back here on IST to World War One…..and since I have been working and writing about the Middle East I have also been looking at the effect of the war on many countries but it may have impacted the Middle East more so than others…….

Signs of World War I are everywhere and nowhere in the Middle East.

Overlain by subsequent conflicts and decades of bitter contestation, the legacies of the wartime experience continue to reverberate long after the conflict passed into history in Europe. With the Middle East in the throes of renewed political turmoil and having experienced decades of regional and international crises, many deriving from the decisions taken after the World War I, the complicated legacies of the war may not immediately be apparent but are nonetheless highly relevant.

A parallel may be drawn with the divided Europe up until 1989, where the ramifications of the World War II remained highly visible across multiple generations and made it difficult to establish historical distance from events whose legacy continued to resonate decades after.

https://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/remembering-world-war-middle-east-181109152013898.html

Sadly tomorrow this war will be once again meaningless to most Americans…….

That brings today to an end of posting for me….I must recharge my batteries….see you guys tomorrow……chuq

“Making America Great Again”–Part 14

This part of the series is where most people pick up their knowledge of the country…the presidency of Andrew Jackson…..maybe I should say this is where most Americans think they know about this country and its early government……

Maj. Sjursen does an excellent job at looking at Jackson and the events around his presidency in Part 14…….

Part 14 of “American History for Truthdiggers.”

“… When the right and capacity to do all is given to any authority, whether it be called people or king, democracy or aristocracy, monarchy or a republic, I say: the germ of tyranny is there. …” —Alexis de Tocqueville, “Tyranny of the Majority”

There are precious few presidents, indeed, who can claim to have an entire era bearing their name. Andrew Jackson is one. Historians have long labeled his presidency and the years that followed it as “Jacksonian” America. This is instructive. Whatever else he was, this man, General—later President—Jackson, was an absolute tour de force. He swept to power on a veritable wave of populism and forever altered the American political scene. One might argue, plausibly, that we live today in the system he wrought.

https://www.truthdig.com/articles/american-history-for-truthdiggers-andrew-jacksons-white-male-world-and-the-start-of-modern-politics/

Many think that the Jacksonian Era was the beginning of America as we know it today…..

This is an excellent look at our history…a history that may not be as it was taught to you in your school days…..

Learn Stuff!

Class Dismissed!

Could It Happen Again?

That question is being asked on the day we Americans celebrate Armistice Day….could the world be plunged into that darkness again?

1914 the world thought that a form of “globalization” could prevent war……..they were wrong and we have been trying that experiment yet again and so it has not prevented any war that I am aware of….but here is Bloomberg’s take on this question……

Last month, I traveled to Vienna, the former seat of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and a fitting place to contemplate the approaching 100th anniversary of the conclusion of World War I.

That conflict began with Austria-Hungary’s declaration of war against Serbia in July 1914, following the assassination of Austro-Hungarian archduke Franz Ferdinand. It ultimately led to more than 15 million deaths, the collapse of four empires, the rise of communism and fascism in some of Europe’s leading states, the emergence and subsequent retreat of America as a global power, and other developments that profoundly altered the course of the 20th century.

World War I was “the deluge … a convulsion of nature,” remarked Britain’s Minister of Munitions David Lloyd George, “an earthquake which is upheaving the very rocks of European life.” Although that conflict ended a century ago, it still offers three crucial lessons that are relevant to our increasingly disordered world today.

https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2018-11-11/100-years-after-world-war-i-there-s-reason-to-fear

Then there is the view of 100 years of a grand strategy by the US since the end of WW1…..

On November 11, 1918, World War One, the Great War, ended. Amid the chaos that followed—revolution, the fall of empires, and rise of nations—the United States attempted to build a rules-based world which favored freedom. American power had won the war, and President Woodrow Wilson was trying to shape a peace along the lines of what we now call a rules-based or “liberal” world order. Wilson’s Fourteen Points, presented the previous January, challenged the imperial, balance-of-power system of the European powers (on both sides) which had started the war, and at the same time took on Lenin’s revolutionary alternative. Wilson’s ideas were a rough draft of American Grand Strategy in what has been called the American Century.

http://www.atlanticcouncil.org/blogs/new-atlanticist/one-hundred-years-of-american-grand-strategy

World War One changed the world forever……but now did we actually learn anything from the barbarity and horror of that war?

I await your thoughts.