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Sherman's March: Review/Discuss the Show - General Civil War Talk - Civil War Talk - Civil War Interactive Discussion Board
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 Posted: Wed May 2nd, 2007 02:10 pm
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David White
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I'm opposed to the idea.  It only leads to one upmanship and misery for the troops who are captured, leads to slaughter as surrendering doesn't become an option anymore, which lowers the overall morale of the men and their ability to fight effectively.  It moves the conflict further down the slippery slope of an unjust war, IMO.



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 Posted: Fri May 4th, 2007 05:23 pm
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David White
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Actually that was one of my gripes to the program it implied that was the end of it but it wasn't.  Remember there were mines at Ft. Mcalister afterwards and again Sherman used prisoners to clear mines.

The complexion of the war took a decided turn for the worse in 1864 compared to the earlier years, not saying this was the cause, in fact the biggest culprit was the treatment of black soldiers who were captured, but Sherman's actions were one in a host of sticks placed on the bonfire of the black flag.



 Posted: Fri May 4th, 2007 08:13 pm
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ole
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Remember there were mines at Ft. Mcalister afterwards and again Sherman used prisoners to clear mines.

Seems that back in this thread somewhere, I posted, in effect, that Sherman considered that particular use of mines legitimate. His use of prisoners from that fort to clear them is not particularly egregious in that he was looking for those who placed them -- "you put 'em there; you take 'em out." Not much unusual in that.

The complexion of the war took a decided turn for the worse in 1864 compared to the earlier years, not saying this was the cause, in fact the biggest culprit was the treatment of black soldiers who were captured, but Sherman's actions were one in a host of sticks placed on the bonfire of the black flag.

And, what else is new? You can see the same thing in war after war. The longer it goes on, the worse it gets. They all begin with noble reasons and eventually detreriorate into "kill them all and let god sort them out." War is a nasty business. It might start as two gentlemen  squaring off on a field of honer. It inevitably ends when all the gouging of eyes and private parts has caused one to toss it in.

To believe that ethics is involved in an armed stuggle is to believe that there will be magical compensation for a lost tooth. Ain't gonna happen. Wars always end when one side has been beaten to near death and, short of that, will acknowlege defeat. Ethics might be a player at the beginning, it is rarely present at the end.

Doesn't make much difference who was right. The loser is automatically wrong. End of story.

Ole (I need a nap now.)

 



 Posted: Fri May 4th, 2007 08:17 pm
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David White
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Ole:

Can't agree with you that there should not be an ethical component of war, otherwise why take prisoners, just line them up and stab them with a bayonet.  That's a much easier solution for the captors.



 Posted: Fri May 4th, 2007 09:37 pm
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ole
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Can't agree with you that there should not be an ethical component of war, otherwise why take prisoners, just line them up and stab them with a bayonet.  That's a much easier solution for the captors.

I'll not agree that there were perhaps more ethical components of war. War has nothing to do with ethics. When involved in conflict, the question of ethics tends to fade in importance to simply winning.

When you said "should not be an ethical component........" I'll assume that you meant ought not to be.  On that, I could agree. But what ought to be and what is are entirely different things. War is cruelty and cannot be refined. (Trivia 101: Who said that before Sherman?)

Ole



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 Posted: Mon May 7th, 2007 03:42 pm
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David White
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Without ethics we would be no better than animals fighting for a bone.  Humans are supposed to be higher thinking and rational creatures not just driven by baser instincts.  Ethics should apply to any part of our conduct with fellow humans. However, due to the cancer of moral relativism that permeates western society and thought, I expect  ethics to continue to fade as part of our dealings with our fellow humans.  That's one thing that concerns me about our enemies in the Islamic World,  they may prevail in our conflict because they have no ethical ambiguity like we do.  I'll stop there before I'm acused of hijacking the thread.



 Posted: Thu Jun 7th, 2007 05:54 am
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JoanieReb
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So did Sherman say "War is cruelty and you cannot reform it" or "War is cruelty and you cannot refine it."  Or did he say both? 

Believe I finally ran across the answer to that one in my late-night reading tonight:

 β€œYou cannot qualify war in harsher terms than I will. War is cruelty, and you cannot refine it; and those who brought war into our country deserve all the curses and maledictions a people can pour out. I know I had no hand in making this war, and I know I will make more sacrifices to-day than any of you to secure peace.”

and

β€œWar is cruelty. There's no use trying to reform it. The crueler it is, the sooner it will be over.”
 

These can be sourced at a number of places, including: http://thinkexist.com/quotation/war_is_cruelty-there-s_no_use_trying_to_reform_it/150093.html
 

Last edited on Thu Jun 7th, 2007 06:07 am by JoanieReb



 Posted: Tue Aug 7th, 2007 03:22 am
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Kent Nielsen
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I recently saw the program on DVD.  It wasn't perfect for CW enthusiasts/ "fanatics";) But I DO think it was pretty good for the general public or for beginners. I DO wish they had spent a little more time on the Carolinas, especially the burning of Columbia and the North Carolina battles. It also would have been interesting to show what happened to some of those portrayed in it such as Henry Hitchcock, Theodore Upson, Emma Lecomte and Dolly Burge(spelling?). But it was a decent program.



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