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Re^5: "Question" vs "Doubt"

by Anonymous Monk
on Jul 02, 2009 at 14:17 UTC ( #776756=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

in reply to Re^4: "Question" vs "Doubt"
in thread Regular Expression Doubt

You Brits should be careful with what you say about the US, especially so close to the Fourth of July.... Lest you forget, that's the day a rather famous letter was written to George III, the gist of which was to tell you Brits to get out of our faces. Then we roundly kicked your back sides out of here (with a little help from a guy named Lafayette, to be sure). But somehow, y'all didn't get the point and came back in 1812 for an attempt at revenge. So we kicked your back sides out of here again (all by ourselves that time). At least y'all got the point on the second round.... 8-)

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Re^6: "Question" vs "Doubt"
by davorg (Chancellor) on Jul 02, 2009 at 14:30 UTC

    You know, there's a growing movement over here suggesting that we should celebrate the 4th of July as well. And for much the same reason that you do :-)


    See the Copyright notice on my home node.

    Perl training courses

      Finally a point of agreement on a matter of import between the "two countries separated by a common language" (quoth an Irishman, G.B. Shaw)
      You just made a dozen ol' milker faint with that statement :)
Re^6: "Question" vs "Doubt"
by tilly (Archbishop) on Jul 03, 2009 at 03:29 UTC
    Ah, Americans and their amazing lack of understanding of history.

    Historians are generally agreed that the British did not instigate the war of 1812, nor did the Americans win it. If you bothered to learn some world history you'd understand that in 1812 Britain's top priority was named Napoleon. The American colonies were completely unimportant.

    Officially the USA got upset about a number of issues, including the blockade of Europe, and the impressing of American sailors who the British considered British. Reality is a little different. The part of the USA which were most affected by these issues was New England, but popular opinion in New England was solidly against the war. The part of the USA that was most strongly in favour was the South, which saw an opportunity to finish off unfinished business in Canada while the British were distracted, and open up the continent for westward expansion.

    The course of the war had 3 major phases. The first phase was the first couple of years in which the USA attempted to fight against the Indians and Canadians while the British contributed virtually nothing due to the more pressing matter of Napoleon. US successes in this period were decidedly mixed. The USA got nowhere with Canada, in large part due to lack of support for the war in the part of the USA that was closest to Canada. (Namely New England.) But the USA did manage to do serious damage to the Indians, particularly with their massacres of Iroquois villages. The War of 1812 marks the last time that any Indian tribe was strong enough to challenge the US military in open conflict.

    The second phase of the war came after Napoleon was defeated. This was a rather lopsided affair since the British were able to send some troops to the conflict. See, for instance, the torching of Washington, DC. The challenge in this period was that the British could damage the USA in any way they pleased, but they had no desire to conquer the USA because the Revolution had demonstrated the the USA would be ungovernable. This phase ended with a treaty that said both countries would return to their original boundaries.

    The third phase of the war was after the treaty was signed but before the people fighting heard about it. (Communication was slow in those days.) In this period the USA had some significant local successes, particularly around New Orleans. This gave the USA the ability to tell itself that it was winning at the end, and made a number of heros. Including, notably, Andrew Jackson.

    So what was the outcome? A mixed bag at best. On the official grievances the USA got nowhere. Even today, countries at war put up blockades like the one that the USA disliked. The USA signally failed to convinced Britain that it was wrong in its theories on who it could impress, and in fact international law on citizenship today looks more like the British theory than the US one. (You are a citizen of all countries that wish to claim you, and if you come within the jurisdiction of any of them they can apply their laws against you and nobody else will say boo, including other countries that claim you as a citizen.) In 2 years of trying the USA made no headway against Canada, which had a small fraction of the US population. The USA broke the Indian tribes, which set the basis for westward expansion. Britain proved that she could devastate the USA at will.

    But, as usual, the US simplifies history and retroactively claims complete victory.

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