Sherman’s Terror Example For Kaiser Bill and Adolf
Lincoln’s devastating trio of Grant, Sherman and Sheridan did not save the Founders’ federated union, but did mercilessly bludgeon and terrorize Americans into submission to a revolutionary change in their government – North and South. Grant hurled well-paid foreigners and native mercenaries again and again at Lee’s half-starved American army; Sherman battled from Atlanta to Savannah to Fayetteville against old men, women and children whilst burning their homes and sustenance; and Sheridan burned the Shenandoah Valley to force crows to carry rations.
Bernhard Thuersam, Chairman
North Carolina War Between the States Sesquicentennial Commission
"The Official Website of the North Carolina WBTS Sesquicentennial"
Sherman’s Terror Example for Kaiser Bill and Adolf:
“It cannot even be though that Sherman was fighting in any sense for democracy. The man who said “Vox populi, vox humbug” and who wrote his wife, at the time when he was becoming famous, “Read history, read
Coriolanus, and you will see the true measure of popular applause,” the great soldier who described himself as “almost a monarchist” and who is said to have asserted repeatedly that, in the interest of winning the
war, every newspaper should be suppressed, can hardly be described as a democrat.
On September 7, 1864, after taking Atlanta, the now confident and towering Sherman announces to General John B. Hood, commander of the Confederate Army of Tennessee, that “he deemed it to the interest to the
United States” to banish from their city the entire population. The reasons he submits to Halleck, then Chief of Staff at Washington, are that he needs the houses of the city for military storage and occupation; that the continued residence of the population would eventually compel him to feed them…that “listening to [their]
everlasting complaints and special grievances” would take up too much of his officers’ time…”
To this Hood replies…”You charge my country with “daring and badgering you to battle.” The truth is, we sent commissioners to you, respectfully offering a peaceful separation, before the first gun was fired on either
side. You say we insulted your flag. The truth is, we fired upon it, and those who fought under it, when you came to our doors upon the mission of subjugation. You say that we turned loose pirates to plunder your unarmed ships. The truth is, when you robbed us of our part in the navy, we built and bought a few vessels, hoisted the flag of our country, and swept the seas, in defiance of your navy, around the whole circumference of the globe.
You say we have expelled Union families by the thousands. The truth is, not a single family has been expelled from the Confederate States, that I am aware of; but, on the contrary, the moderation of our Government
toward traitors has been a fruitful theme of denunciation by its enemies and well-meaning friends of our cause.
Such are your accusations, and such are the facts known to all men to be true…You say, “Let us fight it out like men.” To this my reply is – for myself, and I believe for all true men, ay, and women and children in my
country – we will fight you to the death! Better to die a thousand deaths than submit to live under you or your Government and your Negro allies!”
Sherman retorts to this that he was not bound –“see the books” – by the laws of war to give notice of the shelling of [civilians in] Atlanta, a fortified town, with magazines and arsenals, and that “we have no Negro allies” in this army, not a single soldier left Chattanooga with this army, or is with it now.”
The browbeating was part of a policy of deliberate intimidation. Sherman was anticipating the Schrecklichkeit exploited by the Germans in the First World War as well as the [Nazi] Blitzkreig of the second. “My aim…was to whip the rebels, to humble their pride, to follow them to their innermost recesses, and make them fear and dread us. And he has come to realize that that terrorization itself is “a weapon.”
(Patriotic Gore, Studies in the Literature of the Civil War, Edmund Wilson, Oxford University Press, 1962, pp. 188-192)