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Re: [civilwarwest] Some basic assumptions

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  • chris bryant
    Jack, I disagree with you on #1;I don t believe the North had a viable strategy when the war started and I don t believe the other advantages would have made
    Message 1 of 56 , Jan 28, 2011
      Jack,
      I disagree with you on #1;I don't believe the North had a viable strategy when the war started and I don't believe the other advantages would have made much difference if the North hadn't found the leaders they needed.On #2 and 3 I'm with you I guess but I'm still undecided about Lee.That's maybe a topic for another list.I DO wonder a bit what Lee might have done with the Army of Tennessee.With regard to #4 I believe that the North had found some good leaders by that point;otherwise,the South could still have won.

      I'd say that the rise of Grant and Sherman pretty well sealed the fate of the Confederacy.In hindsight,the fall of Atlanta guaranteed the re-election of Lincoln,which in turn pretty well guaranteed a Union victory.

      I just finished reading T. Harry Williams' LINCOLN AND HIS GENERALS again and it pretty well confirms for me again that Lincoln was a great war leader.I credit Lincoln with a lot of clear thinking which aided the war effort.

      One of the key questions here is:what if the cast of characters had been different?I think Grant saw more clearly than Lee what needed to be done.Sometimes,when I feel sorry for the Confederates,I wish Beauregard had gotten some more army command time.He seemed to be a fine strategist,though maybe weaker as a battlefield commander.I think J. Davis has been underrated but he clearly wasn't the commander in chief that Lincoln was.My key point is this:eventully,Lincoln found the leaders and they did what needed to be done,but I don't think it was a sure thing that those leaders would be found.And,I might add,southern commanders have sometimes been overrated.
      Chris


      --- On Fri, 1/28/11, jlawrence@... <jlawrence@...> wrote:

      > From: jlawrence@... <jlawrence@...>
      > Subject: Re: [civilwarwest] Some basic assumptions
      > To: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
      > Date: Friday, January 28, 2011, 2:47 PM
      > Hello. A few points:
      >
      > Seems to me I should list some of my basic assumptions
      > about the war.These assumptions seem to me to be pretty well
      > proven and I hope you can agree with them:
      >  
      > 1.The South COULD have won.The NORTH had certain advantages
      > but those advantages weren't decisive.
      >
      > I don't think that the South had the wherewithall to win
      > the war. The North had superior numbers, manufacturing
      > capabilities, logistics and a viable strategy. And moral
      > supremacy. The North could have walked away and handed the
      > war over. Unsupported, the south just could not have done
      > it.
      >
      > 2.Most big battles were indecisive and the side that
      > retreated has generally been designated as the loser.
      >
      > True, but every casualty weakened the south more than a
      > northern casualty weakened the north.
      > Strategically, every battle fought was a loss for the
      > south.
      >
      > 3.This meant that good generals rarely accomplished much
      > even by winning.This is one reason for the debate regarding
      > Robert E. Lee.
      >
      > The other reason is that Lee wasn't much of a general?
      > 4.The South probably had some chance to win even as late as
      > 1864;I'm not sure when that chance was gone but the Union
      > found some good commanders eventually and that may sealed
      > the Confederacy's fate.
      >
      > I think it was Sherman who said that the summer of '63 was
      > when the Union Army entered their professional period.
      > In any event, the fall of Tullahoma split the south into
      > three parts. In my opinion, that sealed the day.
      >
      > 5.Morale was as important as military success;though,of
      > course,it was RELATED to it.
      >  absolutely.
      >
      > Regards,
      > Jack
    • jlawrence@kc.rr.com
      I enjoy this site and am not going to get tossed. Having said that, there was a five minute pause here and I am backing off because I don t want to get
      Message 56 of 56 , Feb 14, 2011
        I enjoy this site and am not going to get tossed.
        Having said that, there was a five minute pause here and I am backing off because I don't want to get shotgunned. Think I'll lay low and figure out what I can say.
        Regards,
        Jack

        Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry


        From: chris bryant <paladinsf@...>
        Sender: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
        Date: Mon, 14 Feb 2011 14:32:38 -0800 (PST)
        To: <civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com>
        ReplyTo: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: Re: [civilwarwest] Re: Happy 199th Alexander Stephens

        Oh c'mon,Jack.If you're going to say something like that,give us a little more.I'm interested in starting some discussion,not ending it.

        --- On Mon, 2/14/11, jlawrence@... <jlawrence@...> wrote:

        From: jlawrence@... <jlawrence@...>
        Subject: Re: [civilwarwest] Re: Happy 199th Alexander Stephens
        To: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
        Date: Monday, February 14, 2011, 1:46 PM

         
        I think the turning point of the war was when Lincoln refused to recognize southern deccession.
        After 1863, they began to realize it (except in South Carolina).

        Regards,
        Jack
        Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

        From: chris bryant <paladinsf@...>
        Sender: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
        Date: Mon, 14 Feb 2011 13:19:30 -0800 (PST)
        To: <civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com>
        ReplyTo: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: Re: [civilwarwest] Re: Happy 199th Alexander Stephens

        Didn't mean to stir up a "hornet's nest" {see how I bring us back on topic?} but it does sort of make one of my points of recent days.Numbers alone don't win wars;morale can sometimes work wonders for the weaker side.The Confederacy had a real chance to win going in to the war but lost heart eventually.Back to the turning point question:having thought it over,I think Vicksburg,combined with OTHER events of mid-1863 WAS a turning point of sorts;I don't think Southern morale ever quite recovered after that and I'd say that might be a point after which the Union was clearly winning the war.
                                    Chris Bryant

        --- On Sat, 2/12/11, Dick Weeks <shotgun@...> wrote:

        From: Dick Weeks <shotgun@...>
        Subject: Re: [civilwarwest] Re: Happy 199th Alexander Stephens
        To: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
        Date: Saturday, February 12, 2011, 5:18 PM

         
        Jack, and your friends, I hate to say this but I no idea of you are talking
        about. That being said I had best not see any more of these type posts or
        you will be looking for a new char room. Have a nice day.

        I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
        Dick (a.k.a. Shotgun)

        ----- Original Message -----
        From: "Jack Lawrence" <jlawrence@...>
        To: <civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com>
        Sent: Saturday, February 12, 2011 7:27 PM
        Subject: Re: [civilwarwest] Re: Happy 199th Alexander Stephens

        > First,
        >
        > Giap was a follower of Minh.
        >
        > Minh was an agrarian reformer.
        >
        > Lee was fighting to maintain white supremacy.
        >
        > Quite a difference.
        >
        > Lee was an enemy of humanity.
        >
        > Regards,
        >
        > Jack
        >
        > ps
        >
        > Like Lee, Giap never won an offensive campaign agaisnt the Union.
        >
        > ----- Original Message -----
        > From: "Jason" <generalripper_1999@...>
        > To: <civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com>
        > Sent: Saturday, February 12, 2011 10:54 AM
        > Subject: [civilwarwest] Re: Happy 199th Alexander Stephens
        >
        >
        > Well, if Giap had been President of the Confederacy and he could have
        > gotten
        > the Northern "media" (for what it was in those days) on board, it would
        > have
        > been worth about 20 divisions to the South. Course Lincoln might have just
        > closed the papers down. ;-)
        >
        > Jason
        >
        > --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "william" <banbruner@...> wrote:
        >>
        >> I suppose my favorite counterfactual in the area would not be what if A.
        >> Stepenns had ascended to the presidency of the Confederacy but: What if
        >> Vo
        >> Nguyen Giap had been in charge?
        >> Bill Bruner
        >> ps Newt might consider this as a book project.
        >>
        >> --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "banbruner@" <banbruner@> wrote:
        >> >
        >> >
        >> >
        >> > --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, chris bryant <paladinsf@> wrote:
        >> > >
        >> > >
        >> > > and also 150th anniversery of his taking office as C.S.A. Vice
        >> > > President if my info is correct.Anybody want to comment on whether
        >> > > the
        >> > > premature death of J. Davis and a Stephens presidency might have made
        >> > > any difference?
        >> > > Chris Bryant
        >> > >
        >> > Possibly, but I have no conception of how.
        >> > Would it have been better or worse for the South or better or worse for
        >> > the North? I enjoy counterfactuals but I have no idea which way to go
        >> > on this. I will only say that while I think both men were proven by
        >> > history to be wrongheaded they were both sincere and honorable men.
        >> > Bill Bruner
        >> >
        >>
        >
        >
        >
        >
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