Maybe, and that would be ironic, because this time I actually do have something to talk about that has nothing to do with justice for the Deep State.
Or maybe it does, in a way, because the war for liberty is a constant in our lives, and what I’m about to talk about is an earlier battle.
So I have filler on the week when I don’t need it, but I’ll use it anyway.
The Battle Of Saratoga
On this day, October 17th, in 1777, what we now know as the Battle of Saratoga came to an end.
The British held New York (and New York was actually largely loyalist). They came up with looked like a good plan, to send troops north from New York, and south from Canada, to meet in the middle near Albany and cut the United States in half. Britain commanded the seas, so there’d be no way for the two halves of the country to communicate.
There were a lot of horrible SNAFUs, fortunately. The force in New York City had left to seize Philadelphia before the orders arrived, and they did succeed at that.
The northern force of 8000 men under General John Burgoyne, by contrast, was trying to do the right thing but just ran into snag after snag, some of which the patriots engineered, some of which were just Murphy in action.
Even before leaving Quebec, Burgoyne ran into difficulties. They expected to travel mainly over water, and thus hadn’t brought too many wagons and draft animals for the land parts of the route. In June, the governor of Quebec finally issued orders to procure the land transport, but the carts were freshly made out of green wood, and driven by civilians who were more likely to desert. Finally on June 13 Burgoyne set out. Burgoyne’s forces, with the invaluable support of Indians, quickly sailed up the river and up Lake Champlain, capturing Fort Cown Point (undefended) by June 30th. The Indian screening forces prevented American scouts from learning of the true size of the invading force. A series of mistakes on our part made it easy for the British to capture Fort Ticonderoga–which we had considered impregnable–on July 6.
This was a big enough disaster that the French, on the verge of joining the war on our side, decided to hold off.
Burgoyne consolidated his position and then moved on to Fort Edward. Again the Indians preceded him, but this time they became impatient and started indiscriminately raiding frontier families, which simply caused more locals to turn to the Patriot cause. Most famous of these fatalities was Jane McCrea, who had been engaged to a Loyalist; ironically her martyrdom ended up helping the American cause.
But Burgoyne was now deep in hostile territory, and he was realizing he had supply difficulties. He tried raiding the surrounding area for supplies, and a regiment, plus some Brunswick dragoons, under the command of Friedrich Baum went into what is now Vermont to obtain (i.e., steal) supplies. This force ran into 2000 men under John Stark at Bennington, and was enveloped and captured on August 16. That deprived Burgoyne of almost 1000 men and, of course, he didn’t get the supplies.
Burgoyne blamed the Indians and the Canadians who had come with his forces, and most of the Indians and Canadians left his camp; Burgoyne now had fewer than 100 Indian scouts, and now had no protection from the American rangers.
Now Burgoyne was realizing he’d not be done before winter. He had the choice to either retreat or push on to Albany; he chose the latter. A month of maneuverings with only two pitched battles followed, but one was an attack on Ticonderoga, well to the rear of the main British forces.
To cut out a lot of complexity, Burgoyne was finally defeated at Saratoga on October 17th, 1777. The plan to cut America in two had failed.
It would be hard to overstate the importance of this. For one thing, the French, when they learned of this, finally came into the war on our side. By declaring war on Britain, they were risking their own necks, and they didn’t want to jump in until we had really shown that we were in it to win it. And Saratoga did just that.
It shook the British up enough that they tried to negotiate a peace the next year, and repealed many of the acts that had goaded us into fighting. They even offered us self rule and representation in Parliament. That might have worked as late as 1775. It wasn’t enough in 1778. (The self-government offer was basically the blueprint for the later British Commonwealth–the Brits had learned their lesson by then.) After we rejected the offer the British reassessed their strategy, and turned to the south.
And so…a direct line can be drawn between October 17, 1777 and another event exactly four years later, October 17th, 1781, in Virginia. General Cornwallis, commander of the last significant British army on US soil, on that day began negotiations for surrender at Yorktown. That surrender took place on the 19th (meaning we can celebrate another anniversary this coming Monday), and the war was effectively over. The British government fell (i.e., their Prime Minister had to resign), and that was that. We just had to sign a peace treaty with the country that was now forced to acknowledge our independence.
Betsy Ross Flags? Fly ’em if you’ve got ’em. I do and I will.
Justice Must Be done.
Our movement is about replacing a failed and corrupt political establishment with a new government controlled by you, the American People...Our campaign represents a true existential threat, like they’ve never seen before.Then-Candidate Donald J. Trump
Lawyer Appeasement Section
OK now for the fine print.
This is the WQTH Daily Thread. You know the drill. There’s no Poltical correctness, but civility is a requirement. There are Important Guidelines, here, with an addendum on 20191110.
We have a new board – called The U Tree – where people can take each other to the woodshed without fear of censorship or moderation.
And remember Wheatie’s Rules:
1. No food fights
2. No running with scissors.
3. If you bring snacks, bring enough for everyone.
4. Zeroth rule of gun safety: Don’t let the government get your guns.
5. Rule one of gun safety: The gun is always loaded.
5a. If you actually want the gun to be loaded, like because you’re checking out a bump in the night, then it’s empty.
6. Rule two of gun safety: Never point the gun at anything you’re not willing to destroy.
7. Rule three: Keep your finger off the trigger until ready to fire.
8. Rule the fourth: Be sure of your target and what is behind it.
(Hmm a few extras seem to have crept in.)
The Mandatory Coin
I’m going to skip this, this time; Saratoga is quite enough history to “chew on.”
To conclude: My standard Public Service Announcement. We don’t want to forget this!!!
Remember Hong Kong!!!
Zhōngguò shì gè hùndàn !!!
China is asshoe !!!