Similarities & Differences between the start of the Civil War and 9/11

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tamaroa

Cadet
Joined
Feb 20, 2005
Messages
186
Anyone care to comment about the similiar ways our government is responding today regarding 9/11 relative to how Lincoln responded during the Civil War?

During the Civil War the writ of Habeus Corpus was suspended allowing for people to be held as long as deemed necessary. Look at Davis at the end of the war and he was never charged with anything. Clement Valladingham was thrown out of the country because he was a dissenter then of course you had the Confederate army (traitors?)themselves.

Now after those horrific events of 9/11, you have congress authorizing spying on the internet, easing up of restrictions on wire tapping. Ashcroft holding hundreds of people without charging them and now they are talking about charging an American Taliban as an enemy combatant where the government once it is declared does not have to answer to anyone regarding this person's whereabouts.

Interesting concept?

Regards,

Bill

(Message edited by tamaroa on June 24, 2002)
 
Joined
Feb 20, 2005
Messages
21
While no one will ever compare the intellect and vision of Abraham Lincoln and George W. Bush, my hope for our president is that he has the same commitment to winning our current "war" on terrorism as Lincoln did to winning the Civil War. In other words, I believe Lincoln did and authorized, and would have authorized, anything in his power to win that war, including curtailing civil liberties as you site, Bill. It's easy to look at history through the wrong end of the telescope, but still you can't read about Lincoln's war years without getting the sense that he fully grasped the enormity and seriousness of his mission: to win the war, at any cost. While those around him sometimes worried more about personal ambitions, ego, etc., the real genius of Lincoln lay in his ability to see past all that, and to made the hard decisions necessary to take control of the politics around him and use it for the greater good. I think Lincoln probably detested the idea of ever suspending the writ of habeas corpus; I also don't believe he ever lost a moment's sleep in doing so. In his mind, it was a small price to pay if in doing so he could come closer to realizing his, and the Union's, vision: defeating the rebels.

George W. Bush's mission is no less important. "Losing" this war on terrorism could be even more catastrophic to the nation than losing the Civil War would have been, in the very serious sense that we could be talking about nuclear destruction to part or parts of our country. I don't think it's alarmist to state this. Who (outside of the intelligence community) could have imagined 9/11? So, when Dick Cheney seems to be holding back information to Democrats or the press, or Ashcroft acts as he does, or when the government decides to detain a few hundred people who may have ties to our sworn enemies that have declared for the world their desire to ruin us and our civilization, I, for one, don't lose a wink of sleep. God have mercy on those that would take steps to cause this great country harm, and for those that support them.

Maybe our president and this administration sees it this way, I don't know. I haven't seen the Bush equivalent of the Gettysburg address to make it that clear to me (though his Sept 20 speech to Congress was excellent, and worth reading again). But for me it comes down to this: if the president's actions today prevent my little 2 year old son from living in fear of armed nuclear terrorists in the future, God go with the president.

Jim
 

unionblue

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
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Feb 20, 2005
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Location
Ocala, FL (as of December, 2015).
Bill, The United States has a right to defend itself and to take extraordinary steps for that defense. I feel that it was the same for President Lincoln for his time as it is for President Bush for this time. It is one thing to meet any enemy face-to-face on the field of battle, it is another when that enemy attacks defenseless civilians and destroys their lives in suicide attacks on more of our defenseless civilians.

There are times when the situation is not the norm and requires unique approaches to address it. It amazes me that people think that everyday rules can apply in extreme situations or times. Take for instance the supply sergeant who would not open the arms room during the attack on Pearl Harbor because he did not have a signed order from the CO!

Lincoln had rebellion on his hands over a large region of the country and normal courses of action were not working. And I think it is in the Constitution that you can suspend Habeous? Corpus during times of war or rebellion.

In the present day and age, we must adapt to our new battleground. The internet is a tool of our enemy and should be tracked. Easing of wiretap restrictions is not unusual in this case and it should make you feel better that at one time you didn't have to ease anything as the FBI and other intell services didn't even bother about the law when wire-tapping in previous years.

I was in the Army Security Agency for 13 years, charged with ease-dropping on other nations radio communications. You would have been amazed at all the restrictions and regulations on NOT easedropping on an American, even if he was plotting harm against his fellow citizens. It was just not permitted as a result of all those previous abuses in the past. I for one was glad that I would be court-martialed if I infringed on the rights of an American citizen to privacy, no matter what the reason.

We have to come to the same conclusion that Lincoln did during the war, sit by and do nothing and lose the last great hope of earth, or act and try to save the Union.

I think that is what we are trying to do today providing the best security we can but with an eye on not losing our rights or freedoms. This would be the great victory of our enemies, that our nation would change to the point of not being who we are, strong, free and proud.
 
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