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The most apt example is how Gingrich transforms Robert E.


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Lee into an opponent of slavery. The rabbi is blunt with Lee, telling him that the South will lose the war unless it promises to free the slaves and immediately recruits black soldiers, on both moral and practical grounds.

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He then asserts to Lee that the Emancipation Proclamation took the moral high ground from the South and the only way that the South can reclaim it, as well as win recognition from abroad, is to free its own slaves as well. When men bleed side by side on the battlefield, they become brothers in peace. Benjamin has long believed this in secret and finally feels the time is right to convert Lee, who is the only man in the Confederacy of greater stature than Jefferson Davis.


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  • If Lee is convinced, the South might be saved. This, of course, is about as historically accurate as a Mel Gibson movie, if only with far more expository dialogue.

    But it leaves a certain dramatic dilemma. If Lee, the commander of the Confederate Army, is a good guy, inclined toward abolition, who then is the villain? Although there are vague hints at the perfidy of Jefferson Davis in the last pages of the third volume, Gingrich places the black hat on two figures from the North who elide the boundaries between politician and war leader, Dan Sickles and Edwin Stanton. The real Stanton was devoted to Lincoln at this point in history, even though earlier, during his tenure at the War Department, he was a vicious critic, having famously referred to the president as a gorilla.

    Grant Comes East: A Novel of the Civil War

    Stanton seems to be chosen as an antagonist both for his role as a radical Republican after the war, and because he makes a convenient plot device. But Stanton plays second fiddle to Dan Sickles, who is the archvillain of the series. Sickles is a New York City Democratic politician who was given command of a Union brigade at the beginning of the war and rose to become a corps commander.

    Grant Comes East A Novel Of The Civil War

    In enshrining Sickles as the bad guy, Gingrich avoids blaming Republicans or Southerners. Instead, the antagonist is a Democratic machine politician from New York, naturally without honor or scruples. Sickles is a Democrat motivated by ambition, who unhesitatingly engages in class warfare.

    Grant Comes East: A Novel of the Civil War - Newt Gingrich, William R. Forstchen - Google книги

    Gingrich paints him with the same brush he has used to portray Jim Wright and Bill Clinton and, during his remarkable recent run as front-runner for the Republican presidential nomination, Barack Obama. To achieve this goal, Sickles leads the rebuilt Army of the Potomac on an unauthorized expedition into Maryland in hopes of catching Lee by surprise and insuring that he receives credit for the victory. The life of a ward heeler, of a mere congressman, of the snickers behind his back. There was as well, within in his soul, a still loftier ambition. His love of his country could not be questioned by any who truly knew him, though his vision of what that country was, and should be, might differ greatly from those of the ones born to wealth and position.

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    He had clawed his way up, and he knew that nowhere else in this world could one such as he have reached the heights he now occupied. This country had to be saved, its brawling energy, its factories and urban power, and all that derived from that power, expanded to encompass the Western world. Tsouras's Gettysburg: An Alternate History. Published: St.

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    All the while, Ulysses Grant is forming a new Union Army of the Susquehanna at Harrisburg, and Dan Sickles looks for an opportunity to use the remnants of the Army of the Potomac against the Confederates, and in doing so falls into Lee's trap. Series note: Second of a Civil War Trilogy.

    Grant Comes East: A Novel of the Civil War

    Disrupted plans and the odd bit of intelligence lead both Grant and Lee toward Frederick, Maryland, where Custer's Last Charge begins the carnage that is the four-day Battle of the Monocacy which will end the Civil War. Series note: Third of a Civil War Trilogy. Gingrich, Newt, and William R.