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Gian P Gentile
03-01-2008, 01:48 PM
To paraphrase St Carl (Clausewitz) history should inform the commander's judgment but it should never accompany him to the battlefield, the oped by Professor Brian O'Malley of Jones college, Lessons on Iraq from a Founding Father (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/02/29/AR2008022902739.html), to me is a perfect example of how to use history to inform thinking and judgment on current affairs and issues. The piece presents an idea of how George Washington thought about military involvement in a foreign country and spurs the reader to think historically about current American involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan. Professor Jones deploys history to inform, and not to accompany.

Another superb example of the use of history to inform was an oped from last October in the NY Times by Professor Francois Furstenberg of the University of Montreal titled Bush’s Dangerous Liaisons (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/02/29/AR2008022902739.html).

I am jealous; I wish I had written either one of them.

gentile

zenpundit
03-02-2008, 03:54 AM
Re: Lessons on Iraq

I agree, that was nicely done by Dr. O'Malley.

One of the best uses for history as a teaching tool is having students discern the patterns present in seemingly dissimilar scenarios, from which they can then extrapolate and develop analogies, which in turn, can be subjected to critical evaluation as to their soundness or wider applicability. The door is also open for using thought provoking counterfactuals for further reflection and discussion.

Gian P Gentile
03-02-2008, 12:18 PM
...The door is also open for using thought provoking counterfactuals for further reflection and discussion.

So true, counterfactuals, or "what ifs" are great ways to break down complex historical problems by removing certain causes or conditions for the milieu which thereby allows to see a bit more clearly the actual historical problem at hand.

My favorite one when teaching ante-bellum American History is to pose the simple counterfactual that if slavery never existed in America, or at least had gone away in the early 1800s, can you imagine the north and south fighting a Civil War on the scale of the one that actually occurred?

Another favorite counterfactual of mine when thinking about Iraq and gauging the success of the Surge and considering why violence has dropped so precipitously is to consider three conditions for the lowering of violence: 1) the Surge with its so-called new Coin methods and increased number of troops; 2) Sadr's cease-fire; 3) The key decision to pay our former enemies the non-alqueda sunni insurgents to stop attacking us and co-opt them to become our allies in fighting alqueda. If you take the first condition out of the mix in this counterfactual, does violence still drop precipitously? I think yes. If you remove either of the latter two conditions then in my mind the answer is no. Understanding the true causes of the lowering of violence in Iraq is important as we consider paths for the future and force structure for the American military.

Hence the value of counterfactual analysis both in looking back at the past, considering the present, and speculating about the future.

gg

jmm99
05-27-2008, 10:53 PM
I have no beef with using Washington's five "bullet points" as good general rules for occupations and COIN.

I suggest that some added thoughts be given to the first point: "First, if the citizens don't want us there, don't go." -- Those thoughts are in the context of facts that were or should have been known to Washington.

Note as to sources. I have included some Wiki links (superficial with some mistakes); but the primary sources are Canadian (in two cases, Canadien).


-------------------------------
1. Assassination of Joseph Coulon (1754)

Washington led the mixed Colonial-Indian force that killed Joseph Coulon at Jumonville Glen (1754) - "first shots of the Seven Years War" and all that. The Coulons were a leading French-Canadian military family (see bios below).

Washington's subsequent surrender document (in Franch, authored by Louis Coulon) was subjected to a fair amount of spin by his side (then and to the present) to absolve Washington of Coulon's assassination or murder (clearly stated in French). The French-Canadian perception was the opposite.

So, Washington was less than well regarded by the French-Canadian officer corps (most of whom remained in Canada after the British Conquest). Perhaps, Washington was ignorant of that; and/or believed the spin in his favor.

Disclosure: The Coulon brothers are/were my relatives (cousins by Jarret ancestry). They had many cousins - and their cousins had many cousins. Since Québec was something of a military establishment (regular and militia), adverse perceptions of Washington had many willing listeners. The French-Canadians were in many way tribal - not feudal - as Guy Carleton learned.

Refs:

Joseph Coulon de Jumonville

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_Coulon_de_Jumonville

http://www.biographi.ca/EN/ShowBio.asp?BioId=35405

Louis Coulon de Villiers

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Louis_Coulon_de_Villiers

http://www.biographi.ca/EN/ShowBio.asp?BioId=35406

Nicolas-Antoine Coulon de Villiers

http://www.biographi.ca/EN/ShowBio.asp?BioId=34845&query=coulon

Surrender Document

brief discussion
http://www.pghhistory.org/Heinz_Curators_Corner_Summer2005.asp

in-depth discussion
http://www.jmu.edu/writeon/documents/2001/blosser.pdf


------------------------------
2. Reforms of Guy Carleton (1768-1778)

Guy Carleton turned around the original Brit idea of creating a British colony (settled by Brits), by co-opting the French Canadians (preservation of their law, property and religious institutions and commercial enterprises). Those were implemented before Arnold's invasion.

Carleton's goal was a situation where “... the Canadians are inspired with a cordial Attachment, and zeal for the King’s Government.” On that one, good luck, Guy. However, Carleton had succeeded in neutralizing the bulk of the French-Canadians. Apparently, Washington did not know that.

It is possible that he was influenced by some pro-Americans in both the French-Canadian and Brit-Amer communities. To what extent those folks influenced pre-invasion plans, I have not researched. They did exist to some extent.

"But while the militia was enlarged and ultimately proved more than useful, the support expected from the Canadians was never forthcoming. Indeed, many new subjects, such as Maurice Desdevens de Glandons, Clément Gosselin, and Philippe Liébert, as well as some British and American colonists, including Moses Hazen, James Livingston, Zachary MacAulay, and Thomas Walker, actively backed the rebels, in certain cases even to the point of joining their army."

Somehow, this scenario seems too familiar.

Refs.

Guy Carleton

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guy_Carleton,_1st_Baron_Dorchester
http://www.biographi.ca/EN/ShowBio.asp?BioId=36432



--------------------------------
3. War of 1812 and Insurgency of 1837-1839

By 1812, the French-Canadian militia officers were on the Brits' side. Three examples (easily multiplied) are Eustache-Ignace Trottier-Desrivières-Beaubien, François-Amable Trottier-Desrivières & Joseph Beauchamp. The first two were 1st cousins; the third was a 2nd cousin to them (by Trottier ancestry).

By that time, the French-Canadians and British migrants had become intertwined in commerical interests and marriages. E.g., François-Amable Trottier became the principal heir of James McGill because of his mother's second marriage to McGill.

All was not well in French-Canadian and Brit relations after that; and the F-C's revolted in 1837-1839. The F-C community split (one reason for the insurgency's failure). In any event, that was 60 years too late for Washington's plans.

Disclosure: Joseph Beauchamp (my 4g-grandfather), was a very minor player in 1812 (as compared to his Trottier cousins). He died before the 1837-1839 uprising. His step son, Ludger Duvernay, was very much involved in that affair.

Refs.

Eustache-Ignace Trottier-Desrivières-Beaubien

http://www.biographi.ca/EN/ShowBio.asp?BioId=36818&query=trottier

François-Amable Trottier-Desrivières

http://www.biographi.ca/EN/ShowBio.asp?BioId=36960&query=trottier

Joseph Beauchamp

http://cgi2.cvm.qc.ca/glaporte/1837.pl?out=article&pno=n0362&cherche=BIOGRAPHIE

Ludger Duvernay

http://www.biographi.ca/EN/ShowBio.asp?BioId=38012&query=duvernay
http://cgi2.cvm.qc.ca/glaporte/1837.pl?out=article&pno=0046&cherche=BIOGRAPHIE


------------------------------
4. Conclusion.

I have some doubts as this one of O'Malley's conclusions: "American ideals won immediate support from the Canadians, but American misconduct squandered it." However, I would be happy to see what evidence (if any) supports that generalized conclusion.

I have not really looked to whether this factual assertion is correct: "Contrary to Washington's orders, some American commanders disrespected Canadians' religion, property and liberty." It seems plausible.

What relevance (if any) this has to Iraq, I defer to people who have been there.

jmm99
05-28-2008, 04:24 AM
The F-C links for Beauchamp and Duvernay did not work on my home computer. So, here are the links from the National Assembly of Québec ( Assemblée nationale du Québec) - French only for bios:

Joseph Beauchamp

http://www.assnat.qc.ca/fra/Membres/notices/b/BEAUCJ.htm

Ludger Devernay

http://www.assnat.qc.ca/fra/Membres/notices/d/duvel.htm

Sorry for any inconvenience.

marct
05-28-2008, 04:55 PM
Hi JMM99,

Thanks for the links!

As a general note, I suspect that the key strategy was in the 1760 Article of Capitulation of Quebec (http://www.canadiana.org/ECO/PageView/42695/0006?id=c965037450cb9629) and, most especially, in articles II, V and VI (later reinforced in the Treaty of Paris {1763} and the Quebec Act of 1774). The guarantee of religious toleration actually made Quebec a better place for Catholics than England (or the 13 Rebel Colonies) - a fact that played in very well with a number of families in England, Ireland and Scotland.

Did
American ideals won immediate support from the Canadians, but American misconduct squandered it. Contrary to Washington's orders, some American commanders disrespected Canadians' religion, property and liberty.?

Personally, I think this is a very biased reading of the situation. Why should the Canadians accept American "ideals" at the cost of their religious freedom? Did they "disrespect" our religion, property and liberty? Yup, Arnold and the rest of his insurgents got what was coming to them :cool:. And, if you pop ahead to the War of 1812, you an see a more accurate view of the American commanders intent (General Hull's Proclamation to Canada, July 13th, 1812).

In the name of my Country and by the authority of my Government I promise you protection to your persons, property, and rights, Remain at your homes, Pursue your peaceful and customary avocations. Raise not your hands against your brethern, many of your fathers fought for the freedom & independence we now enjoy Being children therefore of the same family with us, and heirs to the same Heritage, the arrival of an army of Friends must be hailed by you with a cordial welcome, You will be emancipated from Tyranny and oppression and restored to the dignified station of freemen. Had I any doubt of eventual success I might ask your assistance but I do not. I come prepared for every contingency. I have a force which will look down all opposition and that force is but the vanguard of a much greater. If contrary to your own interest & the just expectation of my country, you should take part in the approaching contest, you will be considered and treated as enemies and the horrors, and calamities of war will Stalk before you. [emphasis added]

I have to wonder if Hull was an ideological, or possibly pharmacological, ancestor of Doug Feith :eek:!

jmm99
05-28-2008, 11:14 PM
Bonjour Marc,

JMM99 = Mike


----------------------------------
1. 1759-1760 Capitulations and Future Effects

And thank you for the Early Canadiana Online link, which starts with Jean de Ramezay's 1759 Québec Capitulation, goes on to Pierre de Rigaud-Vaudreuil's 1760 Montréal Capitulation and the 1763 documents. It is well to go back to the original documents, "lest we forget".

The 1760 Montréal Capitulation includes much more text, but the religious issues were (for the most part) resolved in favor of the RC institutions. Arts XXVII-XXXV (RC Religion, with minor refusals). For me personally, Art XXXIX (Canadian & French troops allowed to remain in Canada, Acadians excepted) is most important; since, otherwise, I would not be alive. For those troops and their descendants, Art XLI (no requirement that they bear arms against the French king; but that "they become subjects of the King") set the stage for independent Canadian development.

But, between those surrenders, another important event took place. That was the battle of Sainte-Foy (28 Apr 1760), which was a French-Canadian victory (with the help of the French regulars, one must add). Thus, its "battle of the windmill", where d'Aiguebelle's grenadiers went "bayonet to bayonet" with Murray's Highlanders. But, by then, at least one of those grenadiers (my 4g-grandfather Nicolas Aubry-Francoeur) had more at stake than "duty, honor, country". He had a wife and family started at nearby St.-Augustin.

Although Sainte-Foy ended well for us, the end came when a Brit fleet sailed into the Kebec Narrows. The expected relief from France did not come - thus, culminating 150 years of France's "do it on the cheap" approach to Nouvelle France. So, there was a sense of betrayal by France that lurked in F-C hearts; despite a sometimes over-emphasis on the motherland, its culture and language.

And, continued to lurk there into our times. So, we find Jean Drapeau, mayor of Montréal, and his attitude in the late 1960's:

"His was also the most effective reply to Charles de Gaulle's provocative use of the separatist slogan "Vive le Québec libre" during a 1967 visit. With passion in his voice, Drapeau told the visiting French president that Quebecers' identities were forged in the Canadian cauldron, not in that of Mother France."

Toronto Telegram, July 27, 1967 - "In fact Mayor Drapeau perhaps summed up the feeling of most Quebec French when he told de Gaulle flatly at a city hall luncheon: 'We have been able to decide our own fate and we have never owed anybody gratitude except ourselves.' He looked directly at the general as he spoke."

I recall a video clip (prob. CBC), where, during one of de Gaulle's speeches, de Gaulle saying in effect that "France will always come to your aid", Drapeau piped up in the background: "Yes, just as you did 200 years ago." Couldn't find that, but I believe it exists.

Now, the point of this long blah-blah, is that the British Crown became the "legitimate government" in the eyes of most French-Canadians. And that, despite the Brits' conduct in the Québec siege, which "disrespected Canadians' religion, property and liberty" far worse than anything Arnold et al did. A number of my ancestors and their Beaupré Coast neighbors (not soldiers, just civilians) could attest to that.

If a majority of a population believe that they are living under a legitimate government, "insurgents" (domestic or foreign) will have a hard row to hoe. The contrary is also true.


Refs

Early Canadiana Online (starting at, but continuing for pages)

http://www.canadiana.org/ECO/PageView/42695/0006?id=c965037450cb9629

Jean-Baptiste-Nicolas-Roch de Ramezay

http://www.biographi.ca/EN/ShowBio.asp?BioId=36258&query=ramesay

Pierre de Rigaud de Vaudreuil de Cavagnial

http://www.biographi.ca/EN/ShowBio.asp?BioId=36264&query=Vaudreuil

Battle of Sainte-Foy

http://faculty.marianopolis.edu/c.belanger/quebechistory/encyclopedia/BattleofSteFoy.html
http://faculty.marianopolis.edu/c.belanger/quebechistory/encyclopedia/TheSevenYearsWar-FrenchandIndianWar-TheFallofNewFrance.htm

Jean Drapeau

http://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.com/index.cfm?PgNm=TCE&Params=A1ARTA0002392
http://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.com/index.cfm?PgNm=TCE&Params=M1ARTM0012003
http://encarta.msn.com/sidebar_461576264/de_gaulle_calls_for_free_qu%C3%A9bec.html


-------------------------
2. Arnold and Some F-C Militia

After an impressive, hellish long march (in summer dress), Arnold and Montgomery ended up at the "battle of the barricades" (in Québec's Basse Ville). So, as to Montgomery:

"Montgomery's brigade advanced along the river coastline under the Cape Diamond Bastion, where they came to a blockhouse barricade at Près-de-Ville manned by about 30 French-speaking militia. Montgomery advanced his brigade towards it at a walk, and the militia responded with a volley that cut down Montgomery and the brigade's two other highest ranking officers. The next highest ranking officer ordered a retreat, while the militia continued to snipe at them."

and, as to Arnold:

"Benedict Arnold was unaware of Montgomery's death and his attack's failure, and he advanced with his main body towards the northern barricades. They were fired upon by British and local militia manning the wall of the city. Upon reaching a street barricade at a street called Sault au Matelot, Arnold was wounded in the left ankle by a musket ball and was taken to the rear."

At the time, the Sault au Matelot was home territory to my da Silva clan (Dassylva to the French). I have no idea whether they took part in that one; but they would have had good reason to defend their homes.

BTW: mon enfant - no soldier deserves to die (Montgomery) or be wounded (Arnold) - non ? It is, however, an occupational hazard. OK, there are exceptions where the soldier ceases to act as a soldier and becomes something else. I don't see that in the case of Montgomery and Arnold.

Ref.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Quebec_(1775)


-------------------------------------
3. Hull the Lawyer

One lesson here is: don't put a presumably competent lawyer at the head of a military command. The results may well be different from what you and he expect. :D

Having read through the entire Declaration, I conclude that Hull was full of hubris (kindly stated). By then, he was going to have little if any support from the F-Cs in Québec; and no support from the UEL (United Empire Loyalists) who fled the Americans for Ontario. There is more on Hull and that American defeat in a book on Tecumsah (forget the name & author - I'm at the office and not at home).

I'll leave comparison to Doug Feith (and the rest of the neocons) to others. Their politics is not mine; and I am old enough to remember when their elders' politics were Maoist-Trotskyite. OK, to be complete, some of those elders were CPUSA.

Refs

Hull 1812
http://www.galafilm.com/1812/e/people/hull.html

Declaration
http://www.galafilm.com/1812/e/people/hull_proclamation.html


--------------------------------------
4. "Why should the Canadians accept American "ideals" at the cost of their religious freedom?"

Not at that time, for sure. Of course, in 1775-1776, the American "civil religion" was not developed. And, the Enlightenment (on which, it is partially based) would not have been well received in French Canada. Then, I doubt whether there were very many readers of Voltaire in Québec. In fact, there were not that many readers - as attested by many of my ancestors' marriage actes. ;)

The Enlightenment did have an influence as one takes the path from Papineau to Laurier to Trudeau; but that was a Canadian path - with some Scottish fosterage in the case of Laurier.

Tacitus
05-29-2008, 12:14 AM
jmm99: interesting posts. Years ago, I read Gore Vidal's novel "Burr." In this novel Aaron Burr recalls various incidents in his life, and gives his opinions of the principal political and military leaders of his time. All I ever learned as a school kid about Burr was that he killed Alexander Hamilton in a duel. Burr lived a long time beyond this duel, in history he just sort of disappears after it happens.

But Burr went on that expedition with Arnold to Quebec. You want to talk about an American invasion launched with poor intelligence and subpar planning, with overoptimistic assumptions of what the locals would do, this one takes the cake! Your phrase "hellish long march" is fitting, although I might change that to "frozen on starvation rations long march".

Anyway, I enjoyed the story, it is also pretty humorous. There is a sequel of sorts to it called "1876", which chronicles the events of another disputed presidential election.

jmm99
05-29-2008, 02:59 AM
Hey Tacitus,

You really are in John Sevier and “Over the Mountain Men” country, as I make Bristol on the map. My dad's outfit from 20 Sep 1944 into 1946 was Co. C, 1st Batt. ("Curlew"), 117th Inf. Regt. ("Breakthrough"), 30th Inf. Div. ("Old Hickory" or "Tennessee Volunteers" - not sure which was "official"); from down the road at Cleveland. Now (according to a website updated 1 Jun 2001 !), Troop A, 1st Squadron, 278th ACR, at same place (unless the designations have been changed since).

Looks like it is in line for another "scenic tour" per WVLT-TV (13 May 2008).

One hell of a good military history in that region (and a sad one during the "War of Division").

Small world, isn't it.

----------------------------------
Aaron Burr did mount (attempt to mount) an insurgency; for which, he was indicted and tried for treason. Had occasion to look at those cases, back in the day, since they form the basis for much of Federal treason law. The details I will spare the reader. Burr's neck was saved by John Marshall's decision; undoubtedly correct since JM is my judicial model. ;)

"Marshall had followed a strict reading of the Constitution and excluded all evidence not directly related to the act of treason. He maintained that it took the testimony of at least two witnesses to the same "overt act" of treason to convict."

---------------------------------------
Your namesake's "Agricola" (focused on Tacitus' father in law) is a good source for how the Romans handled insurgents. It contains the speech of the Briton insurgent Galgacus, including:

"Robbers of the world, having by their universal plunder exhausted the land, they rifle the deep. If the enemy be rich, they are rapacious; if he be poor, they lust for dominion; neither the east nor the west has been able to satisfy them. Alone among men they covet with equal eagerness poverty and riches. To robbery, slaughter, plunder, they give the lying name of empire ["government" in my trans.]; they make a solitude ["desert" in my trans.] and call it peace." [Agricola, sec. 30, in ref. below]

No longer acceptable under the rules of land warfare; but my pool league (8-ball) partner Todd (E-7 ret.) likes the concept of make a desert, call it peace and then leave quickly !!

PS/ I disliked (can I make that stronger) Vidal's personality and politics; but enjoyed his novels - go figure !

Refs

278th ACR
http://www.geocities.com/278acr/munits-f.html
http://www.volunteertv.com/news/headlines/18898959.html

Burr and Marshall
http://www.apva.org/marshall/justice/aaron_burr_trial.php

Tacitus, Agricola (complete)
http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/ancient/tacitus-agricola.html

wm
05-29-2008, 12:15 PM
"Agricola" (focused on Tacitus' father in law) is a good source for how the Romans handled insurgents.

I'd be very careful accepting the truth of things found in the writing of Tacitus. I think much of his work (particularly the Agricola and the Germannia) is revisionist history at its best. He was writing much more of a panegyric to the bygone days of the Republic than he was writing history (although this view of Tacitus' work is, admittedly, subject to much schjolarly debate).

Tacitus
05-29-2008, 03:14 PM
I’m originally from East Texas. My wife is from this area. We decided to settle here a few years ago. I prefer the climate of this region to Texas. The local history is also pretty interesting.

The Over Mountain Men gathered at Fort Watauga (which is maybe 5 miles as the crow flies) from my office in Johnson City. There is a group of reenactors who meet every year to commemorate this, but they don’t make a roadmarch all the way to Kings Mountain…imagine that.

I’m aware of that business with Burr being tried for treason. The Vidal novel, told from Burr’s point of view, obviously puts a different interpretation on the whole affair, and stresses the political rivalry between Burr and Jefferson.

Tacitus wasn’t too impressed with Empire and the tyranny that accompanies it, preferring the liberty under the Republic. Every historian brings a point of view to his subject matter. I am sympathetic to his view, and likewise, not particularly impressed with modern day imperial schemes and adventures. Hence, the namesake; y'all have found me out!

jmm99
05-29-2008, 06:13 PM
Good points both; and agreed that Tacitus looked back to a "Golden Age". It would be nice if we had a dozen contemporary histories of Britain during Agricola's time, so we could slice, dice and compare. But, one has to start somewhere.

I confess more familiarity with his "Germannia" than with his "Agricola". As to the former, one can find many points of controversy and also unknowns (e.g., what population group or geographic location was he really talking about). Moreover, he had to rely on secondary (and more remote) sources for much of his information. So, there is an inherent unreliability there.

"Agricola" seems more of a "family history" type work - and, as such, one expects the better side to be emphasized - with some family legends thrown in. Like most classical historians, Tacitus composed the speeches of his characters - how closely to the original substance, we do not really know. The speech of Agricola to his troops (Agricola, sec. 33-34) may have come from Agricola's recollection of that day.

The speech of Galgacus is something else. We may be assured that no Roman was there to record it. One wonders if that speech is not Tacitus himself. If so, it has value as an expression of a view which would have run against the prevailing "wisdom" of his time; a safer way of expressing dissent in those times.

In Tacitus' view, "literary critics" played for keeps in that era. So, as to panegyrics, we have:

"2. We have only to read that the panegyrics pronounced by Arulenus Rusticus on Paetus Thrasea, and by Herennius Senecio on Priscus Helvidius, were made capital crimes, that not only their persons but their very books were objects of rage, and that the triumvirs were commissioned to burn in the forum those works of splendid genius." (Agricola, sec. 2)


Refs.

Tacitus, Germania (partial text)
http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/tacitus1.html

Note: Here is an example of some truth and some mush:

"Upon the Suiones, border the people Sitones; and, agreeing with them in all other things, differ from them in one, that here the sovereignty is exercised by a woman. So notoriously do they degenerate not only from a state of liberty, but even below a state of bondage."

The Suiones are generally thought to be the Swea (Swedes). There is an area in Finland, across the Gulf of Bothnia from Sweden, named Sideby in Ostrobothnia. So, some have inferred that the Sitones lived there.

The Kalevala Saga (Elias Lönnrot), in part, recounts the wars between the "SE Finns" and the "NW Finns".

http://www.sacred-texts.com/neu/kveng/kvrune47.htm

Among the latter, we find that the main character is "Louhi, hostess of Pohyola, Northland's old and toothless wizard, Makes the Sun and Moon her captives ..." The Finnish for Ostrobothnia is Pohjanmaa ("Northland").

So, if Sitones = Sideby (definitely in Pohjanmaa), the Kalevala gives some support to Tacitus' factual claim (1st sentence above). Since the Ostrobothnians make the claim (usually to government types): "We are free men, not slaves.", they would have problems with Tacitus' conclusion (2nd sentence). ;)

marct
05-30-2008, 04:28 PM
Bonjour JMM99,

But, between those surrenders, another important event took place. That was the battle of Sainte-Foy (28 Apr 1760), which was a French-Canadian victory (with the help of the French regulars, one must add). Thus, its "battle of the windmill", where d'Aiguebelle's grenadiers went "bayonet to bayonet" with Murray's Highlanders. But, by then, at least one of those grenadiers (my 4g-grandfather Nicolas Aubry-Francoeur) had more at stake than "duty, honor, country". He had a wife and family started at nearby St.-Augustin.

One of my ancestors fought there as well - in Murray's Highlanders :D.

Although Sainte-Foy ended well for us, the end came when a Brit fleet sailed into the Kebec Narrows. The expected relief from France did not come - thus, culminating 150 years of France's "do it on the cheap" approach to Nouvelle France. So, there was a sense of betrayal by France that lurked in F-C hearts; despite a sometimes over-emphasis on the motherland, its culture and language.

Yup. From what I can tell, pretty much everything was stalemated and held until whichever fleet showed up first. I often thought that the way that war ended really set the scene for how Canada would evolve as a culture. I was chatting with a friend of mine, who is also descended from a survivor at the Battle of the Windmill (on the French side) and we realized that our talk was more of a friendly bicker than anything else - a common experience shared by our families but, at its heart, something that brought us together rather than pulled us apart.

Having read through the entire Declaration, I conclude that Hull was full of hubris (kindly stated). By then, he was going to have little if any support from the F-Cs in Québec; and no support from the UEL (United Empire Loyalists) who fled the Americans for Ontario. There is more on Hull and that American defeat in a book on Tecumsah (forget the name & author - I'm at the office and not at home).

I had a number of ancestors and relatives fighting against Hull in that campaign (both UEL and Iroquois). Honestly, when you look at how Hull's campaign played out, I am truly amazed at how quickly he was defeated.

Marc

jmm99
05-30-2008, 09:56 PM
Bonjour Marc - and, Dia dhuit trathona, as well,


1. Our "Grandfathers" Didn't Kill Each Other.

Beautiful. By way of background, I'm a Mick-Frog from my father; and pure Finlander from my mother. From where I sit, it's about 60 miles (by swimming) to Canada, whose CBC-TV station came in better than our local (100 miles away) outlet. Besides, it had Habitants hockey, my dad's love (besides my mom).

From what I can find, my dad's Mick grandparents came through Canada (natural enough for subjects of the Queen - then Old Vicky); and also my mom's Finns (e.g., her dad worked in Montréal before coming here). Also, went to school at Mich. Tech, which then and now has Canadians as its second national component.

So, I grew up with both USAian and Canadian viewpoints, but with no issues as to national allegiance - we chose to be USAians.

My contacts with Scots Highlanders were more friendly than our ancestors' "handshakes". At Tech, I chummed around with one, also a Mike and also RC, from the Hull area. Mike was a hell of a college football player (played tackle both ways). Sort of a Mutt & Jeff combo (Mike at 6'6" and 280; me at 5'6" and 200). I felt safe in any bar; but, the truth is that each of us had to be pushed back into a wall before retaliation. Talked with Mike a lot about the Highlands and its clans; and Canada, Scots and FCs. The next Highlander was a little different story.

After I left Sullivan & Cromwell (no problems there; the firm and my boss Arthur Dean were great - I just couldn't see living in NY and DC for the rest of my life), I latched up with a Highlander (his ancestors from the Mull-Skye islands, via Canada). Norm had been with naval intell before Pearl; and then a tin can XO and skipper on the North Atlantic and at Normandy (his grandfather was a lakes captain from Canada). He was a generation older than I; his son went to Tech with me and later was an army CPT in Nam - he got back OK.

Norm was (most of the time) a patrician acting guy who intimidated the hell out of most people (a stereotype of a naval officer). He had passed along some "war stories" about his shore leaves - basically down a lot of Scotch and find some "Limeys" to abuse. Didn't quite fathom that until his wife was out of town one weekend, and Fran & I took him out on the town. Yup, a lot of Scotch and then picking on someone(s) to abuse - not much caring whether they were Limeys or not. The next time Sue was gone, we added his daughter to the pack. Same story, except now I had Barb (who inherited her mom's good sense) to help me break up the conflicts.

The only conclusion I draw from this blah-blah (other than that my Highlanders have been great people), is that Scotch and Highlanders sometimes don't mix well. The same, of course, can be said for Cork Gaelics and John Jameson.


2. The Continuing Windmill Tilt.

"... we realized that our talk was more of a friendly bicker than anything else - a common experience shared by our families but, at its heart, something that brought us together rather than pulled us apart." Right on - 5x5.

The Battle of the Windmill could be a metaphor for FC and Brit-Canadian relations - a see-saw (but usually non-violent) battle to work out the differences - hopefully closer than further, as you say. For the most part, the Liberal party has followed the lead of Wilfrid Laurier. I admit prejudice there.

Carolus Laurier (Wilfrid's dad) was a successful arpenteur (land surveyor) at St.-Lin, but owned a small farm at nearby Mascouche, in the same rang (lit. "rank", but a property plat in this case) as our Perrault and Roy farms. The Lauriers were an old Lachenaie-Mascouche family; and so related to most everyone there. And elsewhere too: my g-grandmother from Mascouche, but also my g-grandfather from Maskinongé near T-R, were both Laurier cousins (3rd & 4th degree). Not too surprisingly, Joseph Roy (brother of my gg-grandmother Héloise) married Poméla Laurier, who was a 1st cousin of Carolus. So, by the mode that my FCs count cousins, Héloise and her siblings were 1st cousins, once removed to Wilfrid.

As noted above, Laurier had Scottish fosterage:

"After a few years at the local (French-Canadian) elementary school, Carolus Laurier decided that his son Wilfrid (then 11) should learn English. So, Wilfrid was sent from the French-Canadian village of St.-Lin to the neighbouring Scottish community of New Glasgow (seven miles away). He boarded with the family of John Murray, a Scottish or Scotch-Irish Presbyterian.

Murray's influence on Laurier's English was so thorough that Laurier always spoke English with a Scottish burr - and had a Scottish personal bent. A decade later, Laurier gave the valedictory address (in French - not in Scottish-English) at McGill University. There, just before becoming prime minister, Laurier noted (in 1893): "Were I not French, I would choose to be a Scot."

So, points to the Scots.

Our family's ties to the Liberal party go back further to Joseph Beauchamp, the 1810 MP from Papineau's parti canadien. That party tossed off a few descendants: the Liberals, but also PQ and Bloc, as well as the radicals of the 60's and 70's.

I am attaching a .doc file with my little article on Laurier (from a "family history" viewpoint), since this is getting too long. Not a masterpiece, but readable. I guess .rtf files don't work here.

OK, so we have progress from the Conquest to Laurier (roughly 150 years to 1910); and more progress (with a few arguments) to Trudeau in the 60's (so 50 years more). But, things were still sometimes dicey.

A good friend is a LTC in the CF (security for air component) who retired here - Irish ancestry and married a Finn from here. Got talking once about the "troubles" of the 60's and 70's. He noted a real concern in his and higher levels about how the "Van Doos" (22e régt., la Citadelle de Québec) would react if the chips were down and the #### started flying. Fortunately, Canada didn't come to that test.

Now, there is a point in this blah-blah which is relevant to this thread. It took a hell of a long time for the two factions in Canada to do more than co-exist - and that was under very favorable conditions. Those who are into "nation building" should take that into account - and read some history.


3. UELs and the American Revolution (a Civil War)

BTW: the Tecumsah book I mentioned is Allan W. Eckert, A Sorrow in Our Heart (1992, Bantam, ISBN 0-553-08023-7). This historical re-enactment type has Eckert's view of why Hull got his ass kicked, starting a chap. 11. Beyond reading that, you know more than I.

Got into UELs a bit in looking at some of my wife's ancestry, Doty-Vail and Secor (orig. Sicard, French Huguenots who settled in New York). After reading about them, one sees the historical truth of the present COIN manual, Galula, etc. - minority w/ incumbant, majority neutral, minority w/ insurgent. And that within families !

So, on the UEL side, the relevant source says of Ormand Doty (her ancestor):

"It was reported that during the American Revolution, Ormond Doty lived at or near Albany NY; that he was a Loyalist and was imprisoned al Albany for some time on that charge, but was released after the intercession of his brothers, on the condition that he move to S. Wallingford VT [1]. [1] DOTY GEN pp 511-512." The brothers either being neutral or "patriots".

A Doty brother in-law, John Irish, was "executed" (actually shot from ambush) at "Tinmouth VT 27 July 1777 [1] as a British spy" [2]. [1] NEHGR 122 2424, [2] DOTY GEN p 505.

The Secors were also split. Her ancestor seems to have fought on Washington's side. But, many of his Secor cousins were loyalists, with at least three in Butler's Rangers: "Secord, Senr., David; Secord, Junr., John; Secord, Senr., Peter." A. H. Van Dusen, in his article "Butler's Rangers", which was published in the journal New York Genealogical and Biographical Record, Vol. 31 (1900), pages 12-18. Sources for the source also.

One lesson is that the American Revolution was a civil war - and a nasty one at that. And, it was one where the incumbent government was equally as legitimate as the British government in Canada; where both indigenous and foreign troops were well organized in its support; and where, in the end, the insurgents won ! Hmmm....

Soldiers should study the American Revolution more - is the view of my retired E-7 Todd. I agree - and toss in the factional irregular warfare of our Civil War ("War of Division") to boot (e.g., East Tennessee, where brother sometimes fought brother).

marct
05-31-2008, 03:21 PM
Bonjour jmm99,

2. The Continuing Windmill Tilt.

"... we realized that our talk was more of a friendly bicker than anything else - a common experience shared by our families but, at its heart, something that brought us together rather than pulled us apart." Right on - 5x5.

The Battle of the Windmill could be a metaphor for FC and Brit-Canadian relations - a see-saw (but usually non-violent) battle to work out the differences - hopefully closer than further, as you say. For the most part, the Liberal party has followed the lead of Wilfrid Laurier. I admit prejudice there.

I think it actually is a pretty good metaphor for how we built Canada. Now, on family politics, we might just have to disagree a bit (hey, I'm descended from the Family Compact here in Uppity, umm..., Upper Canada :D). I've got way too many Tories and (shudder) CCF / NDP in my family to ever get tied in with the Liberals :cool:. Then again, Trudeau was pretty cool and a really great conversationalist ;).

Now, there is a point in this blah-blah which is relevant to this thread. It took a hell of a long time for the two factions in Canada to do more than co-exist - and that was under very favorable conditions. Those who are into "nation building" should take that into account - and read some history.

Yupper - 250 years since the Conquest and I would say it's only in the past 50 years that we have really started to pull together rather than just co-exist. There are a lot of lessons in Canadian history for nation building as a whole, not the least of which is the importance of building a shared narrative like the Windmill or Hockey.

jmm99
05-31-2008, 06:25 PM
Hey Marc,

Just take the best of the Tories and the best of the NDP and form a new construct - Tyrrell's Plan for a Better and United Canada. :)

Trudeau was my dad's big guy at the time. Not too surprising, since he was a shop steward and local union president.

My own politics are more conservative than my dad's. Probably best described as libertarian (USAian version, not Euro version), hopefully with reason and without extremism; and with a bit of Bob Taft, Sr. in foreign and military policy.

Life member of the NRA (I grew up with firearms); and not in love with either the Republican or Democratic parties as they now stand. So, I am not presently a political activist.