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Thread: Robert E. Lee: Traitor or American Hero?

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    Robert E. Lee: Traitor or American Hero?

    http://www.lewrockwell.com/wilson/wilson23.html

    Robert E. Lee: Traitor or American Hero?

    Clyde Wilson

    This year is Robert E. Lee’s bicentennial – the 200th anniversary of his birth. Nothing better illustrates the swift and vicious descent of Political Correctness upon American history and symbols than the shadow that has, in just the last few years, been thrown over a man regarded (rightly) for well over a century as among the greatest of Americans.

    Even before the War to Prevent Southern Independence had ended, his Northern enemies were claiming Lee as a prized exhibit of America’s contribution to the world. (As they also were claiming his great lieutenant, "Stonewall" Jackson.) Such a claim could hardly be avoided since the entirety of the civilized world, watching the American bloodbath with interest, had already made that judgment. The British military commentator, Viscount Wolsely, expressed much international opinion when he wrote of Lee: "He is stamped upon my memory as being apart and superior to all others in every way."


    Lee was the son of a renowned general in the Revolution, nephew of two signers of the Declaration of Independence, and husband of Martha Washington’s granddaughter. His last five years were spent as a non-citizen with life and liberty at the mercy of the bounders and petty tyrants who had come exercise the power of the United States. This he endured with exemplary Christian fortitude and charity. Lee was an audacious military genius and inspired leader of men, called by Churchill the greatest captain of the English-speaking peoples, but his fame rests even more upon his character. No American leader has ever set a higher example in peace and war of what the Western world used to understand as a Christian gentleman. When the "traitor" died in 1870, the New York Herald editorialized: "Here in the North we . . .have claimed him as one of ourselves. . . have extolled his virtue as reflecting upon us – for Robert E. Lee was an American, and the great nation which gave him birth would be today unworthy of such a son if she regarded him lightly."


    That judgment had become pervasive national opinion by 1907, when Charles Francis Adams Jr., the only Adams to have seen active service in the war, celebrated Lee in a speech in Boston and other cities called "Lee the American." Adams admitted that the Constitutional position of Lee's cause had been correct (but had to be defeated, he claimed, because it stood in the way of national progress and greatness). More recently President Truman picked a large equestrian portrait of Lee for the lobby of his Presidential library and President Eisenhower went out of his way to vindicate admiration for Lee against complaints that he was honouring a "traitor." They were merely expressing mainstream American sentiment.
    How the times have changed – and suddenly. The official doctrine of the MSI (Mainstream Intellectuals) now condemns Lee as a traitor and oath-violator and his cause as little better than Hitler's. This interpretation rests upon either a deliberate or a vastly ignorant misinterpretation of everything important in American history. The orchestrated blackening of Lee and his cause exhibits the triumph of Marxist categories in American historiography and public discussion. The War to Prevent Southern Independence has become not a great, tragic, historic drama of Americans, but a matter of the destruction and continued demonization of a "class enemy." This now semi-official view warps the understanding not only of The War but of all of American history – which is its purpose.


    A powerful answer to the demonization of Lee and the distortion of American history will be given in a program scheduled for Arlington, Virginia, on Saturday April 28, not far from the Washington-Lee home illegally seized and turned into a cemetery by the U.S. government. The program, called "Lee: Hero or Traitor?" will involve some of the same sponsors and speakers who participated in the immensely successful "Lincoln Reconsidered" conference in Richmond in 2003. It will be an unprecedented exploration of Lee and his cause, which Murray Rothbard called the last of America's just wars. Thomas DiLorenzo, Donald Livingston, Kent Masterson Brown, John J. Dwyer, Thomas Moore, Robert Krick, and Yours Truly will explore "Lee and Liberty," "Lee and Slavery," "Lee and the True Nature of the Union," "Lee's Military Genius," "Lee as Man and Christian," and "Lee's Relevance Today." A certain Congressman from Texas whose name is quite familiar to readers of this site is expected also to participate if his schedule allows.

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    AW: Robert E. Lee: Traitor or American Hero?

    To call Robert E. Lee a traitor would make you a Hillary Clinton supporter.
    Lee stood for all what was good in white America: tradition, class, values and so forth.

    If one wants a USA of uneducated, criminal, non-english speaking minorities (Ebonics is as far from English as Spanish is) becoming the majority, then go ahead, call Lee a traitor.
    Don't be surprised though about a rude-awakening in a potential (and unfortunately probable) near future where people like you ruined a once great nation.

    ------------

    With "you" I don't mean Franz Josef (in case that wasn't clear). I mean liberal white people in the USA.
    "We were never more free than under the German occupation!"

    - Jean-Paul Sartre

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    Re: AW: Robert E. Lee: Traitor or American Hero?

    I have always considered that Lee fought with a heavy heart. Not because he doubted the worth of Virginia’s (the South) cause, but more because he had to fight fellow Americans in order to defend that same cause.

    Whether you support the Federal or Confederate position in this conflict, only the meanest of characters would state that Robert E. Lee was anything less than an American hero.

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    IAmTheRayII
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    Re: Robert E. Lee: Traitor or American Hero?

    Robert E. Lee was an American Hero. He stood for what he knew to be right. When the United States become split in opinion he stood for what he believed to be the way America was founded. He once said, "I am a Virginian first." America as we know it now is not America as it was. The state was the base for loyalty, and if we judge on the way Washington, Jefferson, (both Virginians), Franklin, and the others who began this country, than he held true, and remained loyal, like the founders of this nation would have wanted. The United States were to be seperate entities, united for common purposes; self defense, international trade, and stability acrooss the country. That has gone down the drain with federal laws on personal action and privacy, financial regulations, government bureaocracy, and the shift in power to the figure head seat of the president. Robert E. Lee was one the great American leaders and would have been president, and we'd be living in an entirely different country. He can be counted among Washington, Marion, and Patton. Robert E. Lee was a hero. In every sense of the word; personally, to his family, to his state, to his country, and to civilization in period.

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    Re: AW: Robert E. Lee: Traitor or American Hero?

    Quote Originally Posted by Drömmarnas Stig View Post
    To call Robert E. Lee a traitor would
    Don't be surprised though about a rude-awakening in a potential (and unfortunately probable) near future where people like you ruined a once great nation.

    America has been ruined. There is no repairing the system here without a revolution of some sort. WHICH REMINDS ME.....we are coming up quickly on 250 years....What other great republic fell apart at 250 years ???? That's right...ROME. Because of corruption, and a bogged down system that no longer worked.

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    Re: Robert E. Lee: Traitor or American Hero?

    from what I heard Robert E Lee was a very patriotic character, on a historical show I was watching once it said that even though he didn't like the idea of slavery or their economy being dependant on a foreign slave trade he still joined and fought for the confederate cause and for the freedom and sovereignity of his homeland which at that time was Virginia,
    "A star is extinguished, another will begin to shine - thus it is written in the Book of Nature" - Guido von list, 'Der Ubesiegbare'

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    AW: Re: AW: Robert E. Lee: Traitor or American Hero?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kermeltic View Post
    What other great republic fell apart at 250 years ???? That's right...ROME. Because of corruption, and a bogged down system that no longer worked.

    1. The USA is lightyears behind great historical empires like the Roman and British ones.
    There is a lot to prove in the future to contest their role in history.

    2. Rome fell apart after 250 years????
    That's interesting. My Latin teacher was convinced that Rome's decline began after the Punic Wars when the last real foreign contender was defeated and decadence made its way to Rome.
    But again, that was well beyond the 250 year milestone of existence...
    "We were never more free than under the German occupation!"

    - Jean-Paul Sartre

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    Re: Robert E. Lee: Traitor or American Hero?

    A great hero the greatest, Churchill called him the greatest of All Americans,the Perfect Christian Knight.. I am proud to say my son is headed for Washington and Lee University. My son is a tall blond Nordic Warrior who will play football there, and stand up for his heritage. A descendent of brave Confederate soldiers, his role models Lee and Jackson.

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    Re: Robert E. Lee: Traitor or American Hero?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Solar Wolff
    In fact, any American who ever studied our Civil War gets depressed almost at once.
    So true, especially when we consider how much unnecessary recklessness was involved. Intense sectionalism clouded rational judgement to a considerable degree, and the end result was a disaster (over 600,000 American deaths!). However, Lee strikes us as a character worthy of particular admiration, as his decisions weren't dominated by petty sectionalism (highly prevalent in the North) or selfishness, but instead by loyalty to his local state and also duty to the true principles of the Constitution. Charles P. Roland (Professor Emeritus at the University of Kentucky) wraps up the image of Lee nicely in this passage from his book:

    Taken from "An American Iliad: The Story of the Civil War," (chapter 5, pages 71-72):

    "Robert E. Lee was the incarnation of the cavalier tradition so dear to the southern heart. He was descended from two of the most venerated families of Virginia, the Lees and Carters, and was the son of "Lighthouse Harry" Lee, one of the most illustrious soldiers of the American Revolution. Lee was an exemplary cadet at West Point (class of 1829) and a celebrated hero of the Mexican War. Of his role there Winfield Scott, the war's most brilliant general, said, "American success in Mexico was largely due to the skill, valor, and undaunted energy of Robert E. Lee. He was the very best soldier I ever saw in the field."
    There's many southern figures that I admire, but Lee always stands out. I agree with Clyde Wilson, calling him a "traitor" is either intentional falsification at worst or crude ignorance at best, and in both cases it's a laughable claim.

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