The Star-Spangled Banner

Saturday, September 13, AD 2014

Something for the weekend.  The Star-Spangled Banner.  Two centuries ago America was going through rough times.  Engaged in a War with Great Britain, Washington DC had been burned on August 24, symbolic of a war that seemed to be turning against the United States.  With the fall of Napoleon in April of 1814, the British were now free to punish the upstart Yankees who had dared challenge Great Britain.  Now the British were preparing to seize the port of Baltimore with a force of 5,000 troops and 19 warships.

British plans began to go awry from the outset.  At the battle of North Point on September 12, 3200 Maryland militia gave a good account of themselves against 4,000 British regulars inflicting 350 casualties for slightly fewer American casulaties, and retreated in good order to the fortified line around Baltimore.  Among the British killed was the commander Major General Robert Ross, a peninsular veteran of Wellington’s army, shot down by American riflemen.

On September 13, the British, now commanded by Colonel Arthur Brooke, approached Baltimore.  Estimating that the Baltimore defenses were held by 22,000 militia and 100 cannon, Brooke was unable to launch an attack unless the British fleet could enter Baltimore Harbor to beat down the American defenses by naval bombardment.

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When the Warrior Returns

Friday, September 12, AD 2014

Francis Scott Key set his poem The Defense of Fort McHenry, which became The Star Spangled Banner, to the tune of the English  song To Anacreon In Heaven.  This was not the first of his poems he had done this to.  The first was his composition When the Warrior Returns which he wrote in 1805 in honor of heroes of the First Barbary Pirates war.  Here is the text of the poem:

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One Response to When the Warrior Returns

Prisoner of Fort McHenry

Wednesday, September 10, AD 2014

 

Francis Key Howard

 

Forty-seven years after he penned the Star-Spangled Banner, and eighteen years after his death, a grandson of Francis Scott Key, Francis Key Howard, found himself a prisoner in Fort McHenry.  The editor of the Baltimore Exchange, and a Confederate sympathizer, Howard was imprisoned for his vigorous editorial protesting the suspension by the Lincoln administration of the writ of habeas corpus and the arrest of the mayor and city council of Baltimore by the Lincoln administration.  Howard would be held for fourteen months in various Union prisons until his release.

On September 14, 1861 he looked out from his prison cell in Fort McHenry at the flag waving in the breeze.  He later wrote down his reflections at that moment:

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9 Responses to Prisoner of Fort McHenry

  • There was civil war between the states when Lincoln suspended Habeas Corpus for the duration of the war between the states. Lincoln also suspended freedom of the press.
    .
    “The flag which he had then so proudly hailed, I saw waving, at the same place, over the victims of as vulgar and brutal a despotism as modern times have witnessed.”
    .
    Was anything “as vulgar and brutal a despotism” as enslaving and owning another human being? These individuals got a taste of what they were supporting: depravation of freedom and individual civil rights. Communism operates on the same ideology. Just think, if the South had won the Civil War, the United State of America would have become the United States of Communism.

  • Please, Mary. How absurd. How fascist. That’s the sort of reasoning the left uses to justify their actions – “It’s for a good cause, and besides, nothing we do is as bad as the X that they do, so it doesn’t matter if we run roughshod over their rights.”
    *
    There is NO justification – not even the overthrow of slavery (which wasn’t even an object of the Union in September 1861) – that would justify imprisoning a man for over a year for writing editorials.
    *
    And I can assure you that the South would NOT have turned to communism had they won the war.

  • I agree with you Jay, although what was going on in Maryland at that time was not clear cut. The Sixth Massachusetts had been fired on when it made its way through Baltimore on April 19, 1861. The legislature voted against secession on April 29, but that did not stop a virtual civil war within Maryland between Confederate and Union sympathizers. Military occupation and martial law by the Union ultimately decided that Maryland would remain in the Union. Many civilians were arrested at this time and held, quite a few of whom had committed acts of war against the Union and who any government would have arrested. Howard, however, was not among their number and his arrest and holding was clearly unjust.

  • Donald McClarey: I am so glad that you brought up martial law, for this is how Lincoln declared the suspension of Habeas Corpus and the press. I believe it is in the power of the Chief Executive to declare martial law for the common good. America would not have become communist as staying a slave nation, but isn’t that communism, one person owning another person?
    .
    Jay Anderson: Sometimes they seem to be the good and evil twins. By their deeds you shall know them. Martial law during war is extreme.
    .
    Obama has written martial law for any undefined national emergency he declares in EXECUTIVE ORDER 11921 which allows the Federal Emergency Preparedness Agency to develop plans to establish control over the mechanisms of production and distribution, of energy sources, wages, salaries, credit and the flow of money in U.S. financial institution in any undefined national emergency. It also provides that when a state of emergency is declared by the President, Congress cannot review the action for six months. Who needs Congress anyway?
    .
    “There is NO justification – not even the overthrow of slavery (which wasn’t even an object of the Union in September 1861) – that would justify imprisoning a man for over a year for writing editorials.”
    .
    “The editor of the Baltimore Exchange, and a Confederate sympathizer, Howard was imprisoned for his vigorous editorial protesting the suspension by the Lincoln administration of the writ of habeas corpus and the arrest of the mayor and city council of Baltimore by the Lincoln administration.”
    .
    Howard attacked Lincoln for suspending the writ of habeas Corpus and his editorials while being a Confederate sympathizer.
    Move over Tokyo Rose and Judas. If those editorials had brought about the death of one Union soldier, or lengthened the war, the editor must be held liable. Here, Lincoln silenced his treasonous rant.

  • Mary, Executive Order 11921 was issued by Gerald Ford for emergency preparedness. Obama’s EOs begin with 13489 and run to 13675 so far. See http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/data/orders.php for the summary count. See http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/executive_orders.php for the current list, where you can click on any order and read it.

  • Tom D: “Mary, Executive Order 11921 was issued by Gerald Ford for emergency preparedness. Obama’s EOs begin with 13489 and run to 13675 so far. See http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/data/orders.php for the summary count. See http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/executive_orders.php for the current list, where you can click on any order and read it. ”
    .
    I am under the impression that Obama took all executive orders to himself. -EXECUTIVE ORDER 11049 assigns emergency preparedness function to federal departments and agencies, consolidating 21 operative Executive Orders issued over a fifteen year period.
    .
    Fifteen years does not cover Gerald Ford, abortion, pornography, Obamacare, the HHS Mandate etc, etc. I will look these up. and Thank You

  • “I am under the impression that Obama took all executive orders to himself”
    I am not sure what you mean by that. No president is bound to the executive orders of preceding presidents, and any president may issue an order countermanding a predecessor’s order so long as the new order does not violate Federal statute or the Constitution. On the other hand preceding executive orders remain in force unless countermanded. Obama certainly did not issue any order that made any wholesale changes to ALL to of the orders issued by ALL of his predecessors.

    “EXECUTIVE ORDER 11049 assigns emergency preparedness function to federal departments and agencies, consolidating 21 operative Executive Orders issued over a fifteen year period.”
    No it doesn’t. EO 11049 was issued by President Kennedy on September 14, 1962. All the order did was delegate authority granted to the President by the Public Works Acceleration Act to the Secretary of Commerce. See http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/index.php?pid=58988

    “I will look these up. and Thank You” You are most welcome.

  • Tom D. It will take some time for me to wrap my mind around these Executive Orders.

  • Mary, if you really want to follow the Federal government a place to start is https://www.federalregister.gov/ This not only has the EOs as they are published but also any other departmental order, Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, etc etc etc. Take a look!

To Anacreon in Heaven

Tuesday, September 9, AD 2014

Francis Scott Key set The Star-Spangled Banner to the tune of the song To Anacreon in Heaven.  Anacreon was a Greek lyric poet of the Sixth Century BC, famous particularly for his drinking songs.  The  Anacreontic Society was a club of amateur gentlemen musicians in Eighteenth Century London.   Ralph Tomlinson, the club president, penned the words of what was initially known as The Anacreontic Song.  The tune was composed by another member of the club John Stafford Smith in the 1760s.  The song was published in 1778.

The song became popular in America with new lyrics, Adams and Liberty, written by Robert Treat Paine, Jr. in 1798.

Here is the text of the orignial song:

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Edwin M. Stanton and Temporary Insanity

Tuesday, November 27, AD 2012

 

 

Edwin M. Stanton could be a pill.  Irritable, sarcastic and often completely unreasonable, no doubt many of the Union Generals who had to deal with him often thought that they were dealing with a very mad man.  Mad in an emotional sense Stanton often was, anger often seeming to be the prime emotion he displayed throughout his career, at least after the death of his beloved first wife in 1844 which had a souring impact on his disposition.  However, he was also a very able man, and that compensated for his complete lack of tact in dealing with virtually everyone he came into contact with.  Prior to becoming Secretary of War he had been one of the ablest attorneys in the country.  Doubtless his most famous, or rather infamous case, was in the defense of future Union general Daniel Sickles.

Sickles in 1859 was a Democrat Congressman from New York, already notorious for having been censured for bringing a prostitute into the New York General Assembly chamber.  Leaving his pregnant wife at home, on a trip to England he had introduced the same prostitute, Fanny White, to Queen Victoria under an alias, the surname of which was that of a political opponent in New York.  Sickles obviously viewed his vow of marital fidelity with complete contempt.  However he did not view the vow of fidelity given to him by his wife Teresa in the same light.  When he found out on February 26, 1859 that his long-suffering wife was carrying on an affair with the United States Attorney for the District of Columbia, Philip Barton Key II, the son of Francis Scott Key, the composer of the Star Spangled Banner, he murdered Key the next day in Lafayette Park across from the White House, shooting him through the heart.  Sickles immediately surrendered to the Attorney General who lived just a few blocks away.

His trial was one of the most sensational in American history.  Public opinion was almost totally on his side, painting Sickles as an outraged husband defending his wife Teresa from a villain who had seduced her.  Sickles engaged a stellar defense team which included Stanton.  The defense team had a problem.  No matter what the public thought as to his motivation, Sickles was manifestly guilty.  Stanton hit upon the idea of raising the novel defense of temporary insanity which had never before been successful in the United States.  This was a true stroke of legal genius.  It allowed the defense to put on endless lurid testimony as to the affair and, in effect, have the dead man tried rather than Sickles.  In his closing argument Stanton portrayed the ever adulterous Sickles as a defender of marriage:

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15 Responses to Edwin M. Stanton and Temporary Insanity

  • And, some believe, he masterminded the plot to assassinate President Lincoln, Vice President Johnson and Secretary of State Seward, which, under of the laws of the day, would have left Stanton as president.

  • Some believe that Paul, without a shred of evidence to support the claim. The line of succession was according to the 1792 act and the successor would have been the President pro tempore of the Senate, followed by the Speaker of the House. This was not changed until the presidential succession act of 1886 which took out the President pro temporare of the Senate and the Speaker of the House with cabinent officers from the date of the creation of the office. First in line was the Secretary of State and then the Secretary of the Treasury and then the Secretary of War. The 1792 act also required that a special election for President be held in December of the year in which someone other than the President or Vice President held the office of President, or, if there were less than two months until December, December of the following year.

    The current act governing succession is the 1947 act:

    1) If, by reason of death, resignation, removal from office, inability, or failure to qualify, there is neither a President nor Vice President to discharge the powers and duties of the office of President, then the Speaker of the House of Representatives shall, upon his resignation as Speaker and as Representative in Congress, act as President.

    (2) The same rule shall apply in the case of the death, resignation, removal from office, or inability of an individual acting as President under this subsection. (b) If, at the time when under subsection (a) of this section a Speaker is to begin the discharge of the powers and duties of the office of President, there is no Speaker, or the Speaker fails to qualify as Acting President, then the President pro tempore of the Senate shall, upon his resignation as President pro tempore and as Senator, act as President. (c) An individual acting as President under subsection (a) or subsection (b) of this section shall continue to act until the expiration of the then current Presidential term, except that –
    (1) if his discharge of the powers and duties of the office is founded in whole or in part on the failure of both the President-elect and the Vice-President-elect to qualify, then he shall act only until a President or Vice President qualifies; and

    (2) if his discharge of the powers and duties of the office is founded in whole or in part on the inability of the President or Vice President, then he shall act only until the removal of the disability of one of such individuals. (d) (1) If, by reason of death, resignation, removal from office, inability, or failure to qualify, there is no President pro tempore to act as President under subsection (b) of this section, then the officer of the United States who is highest on the following list, and who is not under disability to discharge the powers and duties of the office of President shall act as President: Secretary of State, Secretary of the Treasury, Secretary of Defense, Attorney General, Secretary of the Interior, Secretary of Agriculture, Secretary of Commerce, Secretary of Labor, Secretary of Health and Human Services, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, Secretary of Transportation, Secretary of Energy, Secretary of Education, Secretary of Veterans Affairs, Secretary of Homeland Security. (2) An individual acting as President under this subsection shall continue so to do until the expiration of the then current Presidential term, but not after a qualified and prior-entitled individual is able to act, except that the removal of the disability of an individual higher on the list contained in paragraph (1) of this subsection or the ability to qualify on the part of an individual higher on such list shall not terminate his service.

  • Donald, I’ve always been told that at that time, the succession went: President, Vice President, Secretary of State, Secretary of War.

    Do you have a link handy where I could research that?

    Of course today, as you’ve outlined, the Speaker of the House and then the President pro tempore of the Senate are in line before the Secretary of State.

    (I suspect most people don’t know who the President pro tempore of the Senate is; I had to look it up: It’s Senator Daniel Inouye.)

  • Hmm, Wikipedia seems quite clear in that I am simply wrong. I guess it’s not only science that changes as you get older, but history, too.

  • Presidential succession law Paul is fairly arcane and I only know it as a result of the Stanton conspiracy theory. I read a book exploding the theory years ago and it went into great detail on the Presidential Succession Act of 1792.

  • No Good Deed Ever Goes Unpunished Department:

    Character counts.

    If Sickles had been hanged, the events of 2 July 1863 may have occurred less tragically for the Union Third Corps (rendered hors d’combat through his insubordination) and the First Minnesota, which likely would have been spared of its famous “suicide charge.”

    Anyhow, what’s one murder compared with killing an army corps of men?

    Ergo, I will refrain from repeating Shakespeare’s line on lawyers . . .

  • History. So much to learn of practical value, so much of cultural significance, and then there are ripping yarns that’d make anyone smile.

  • Is Temporary insanity anything like invincible ignorance

  • Birds of a Feather Department:

    Similarly, Thaddeus Stevensmounted a successful insanity defense of a farmhand who used scythe to behead of a fellow worker.

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  • Hey – Any lawyerly or scholarly reaction to the Delling v Idaho case? It looks like the Supreme Court refused to hear a challenge to Idaho’s lack of an insanity plea. The dissenters have written an opinion, but the majority doesn’t do that in a case that they refuse to hear. It’d be interesting to hear both sides of the issue.

  • As a general rule Pinky I am in favor of the states having a broad latitude in regard to their judicial systems. Idaho forces prosecutors to prove that someone knew what they were doing, but they do not have to prove that they knew what they were doing was wrong. That is a fairly traditional view of insanity in criminal prosecutions. It certainly eliminates the type of farcial result as typified in the Sickles case. I can see how it might end up doing injustice to a Defendant who knows that he is killing A, but is convinced, due to insanity, that A is a demon in human form. However too broad an allowance of an insanity plea and we have a killer claiming diminished capacity due to depression which manifested itself in a slovenly appearance and the imbibing of junk food.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twinkie_defense

    (On weekends I have a built in diminished capacity defense!)

  • On the Constitutional matter, I can see how the Supreme Court might not find the authority to step in. On the matter of abuse, well, thanks to this article, I know that it’s been a problem since day one, and I’m not surprised that every possible loophole has been used over the years to escape justice. How do you read the morality of it, though?

  • Morality and legal procedure Pinky are a tricky mix. The reason for that is that any legal system needs hard and fast rules, otherwise it becomes completely arbitrary, totally dependent upon the whims of judges and juries. It is very hard, read impossible, to craft rules that will do justice in every situation. Often times rules that are implemented to end a manifest abuse of the system, end up producing abuses of their own. Personally I think it is immoral to convict someone who truly was insane at the time of the crime. Additionally I think it is immoral to acquit someone who was obviously not insane, and is attempting to slide through on legal trickery. Such broad statements I am afraid are of little help when trying to craft fair rules of procedure, especially in an area where fakery is so often relied upon as it is in cases raising insanity as a defense.

  • Understood. And I’m not trying to pick a fight here. I just struggle with this question. As Catholics, we should try to make our society as just as possible.

    The twist on it, for me, is the question of capital punishment. I think that the proper Catholic understanding is that capital punishment should be avoided except in cases where the society has no recourse. To me, that would mean situations where it’s not feasible to secure a person. We have supermax facilities to protect the guards and fellow prisoners from the worst of the worst, but Belize may not have something comparable. And there are people who are so dangerous that society doesn’t have a right to expose guards or fellow prisoners to them. If that’s the standard for capital punishment, I can accept it – BUT – how can that standard not be applied to the criminally insane? Haven’t I just set up terms that would require societies to kill those with serious mental illness? I’ve argued myself into a position I don’t find comfortable.

    I’ve been trying to reconcile my instinct and Western history with my understanding of Church teaching, and I know I’m not there yet.

O Say Can You See?

Saturday, May 19, AD 2012

Something for the weekend.  The Star Spangled Banner.  Often assailed by critics as unsingable, too war-like and on other grounds,  I love it and I am proud that it is our National Anthem.   It is an interesting song for a national anthem in that the first stanza, the one we all attempt to sing, has an important question at the end of it:  Oh, say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?   That particular question has to be asked by each generation of Americans, ours no less than the generations who came before us.

Here is a superb video giving the historical back ground behind the writing of The Star Spangled Banner:

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24 Responses to O Say Can You See?

  • Bless them all.

    Today is the third Saturday, 19 May this Year of Our Lord 2012.

    It is for the Top One-Percent of Americans and their relatives Armed Forces Day.

    For many, it will not be parades or receptions. It will be a day of combat operations.

    And, some may give the last full measure of devotion for you and me.

    Greet them ever with grateful hearts.

  • Interesting, I didn’t know that what we sing are only the first and last stanzas of the poem. In 1931 those who adopted it as our national anthem accepted the lines
    Blest with victory and peace, may the heav’n rescued land
    Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.

    Were there no editorials, no ranting letters to the editor, no demonstrations or marches protesting that these words and sentiments indicate a national belief in God and his providence (which somehow deprives citizens of the ‘right’ not to believe?).

    That led me to google Emma Lazarus’ poem The New Colossus which appears at the base of the Statue of Liberty. It also had stanzas I had not remembered. It reflected an openness to the idea of the immigration of poor people to this country in search of a land of opportunity on the other side of the golden door.

    How many today consider that God made and preserved our nation and praise Him for that? How many consider America a land of opportunity where those who come here to work hard will succeed and will enrich the nation.

    This is not to belittle the real sacrifices of the armed forces and their families. It’s just my reflection on how our national ideals have changed over time.

  • That marine’s words could be taken seriously, that second verse could be printed along with the first verse, handed out and sung at church picnics and family gatherings and sporting events.. I wish it would be so.

    He mentioned educating our children– we learn so much in musical mode! we learn our alphabet that way– putting those ideals and hopes to words and to music gives us a better chance of surviving as America.

  • . . .
    O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave.

    Bravery is the way we all – in our differences of opinions and maintenance of private lifestyles – can grow beyond the rising tide of the word war being waged on all elements of society. The melting pot will crack and the over boiled contents will go to waste.

  • I don’t remember ever singing this is with a crowd and not have tears forming in my eyes. It’s so sad that it has become a solo performance. When only one person sings it, it loses some of it meaning.

  • These lines have a special meaning on September 11:

    “And the rockets’ red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
    Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there.”

    And forgive me for altering the lyrics, but on September 11 I think it appropriate to sing:

    “Whose broad stripes and bright stars through the perilous flight.”

  • Time for alll nations to re-write their anthems that glorify the “War is Hell” anthems and encourage our leaders to wage peace.
    In earlier days the leaders lead the troops, today the poor are the troops, lead by the social elite who command from behind desks and computers. Visit their graves on high holidays and ignore the medical needs of the survivors.

  • Waging peace? Why didn’t I think of that! (Don slaps forehead.) Of course, all we need is to “give peace a chance”! Thanks for that insight APO!

  • a bit of sarcastic humor I think, Mr. McClarey, which I appreciate. At the same time there is a real need to discuss this at depth, since so many people hold the positions roughly outlined by O’B.
    After all, as JPII said: “war is always a defeat for humanity.” (to the Diplomatic Corps to the Holy See in Jan. 2003)
    I personally disagree with O’B ‘s comments about our anthem– heck, I even like that bloody “Marseillaise”. I do think we have to fight wars, and rarely use capital punishment. However I also think we could really look at some of O’B’s implied point about poor people becoming our soldiers for lack of better employment, and also his point about caring for injured veterans and survivors.

  • I found Mr. McCleary’s comments immaturely offensive and sophomorically dismissive. The “war is hell ” quote came from Sherman in the US Civil War. The US is flat broke now and being deserted by its former allies in practice, including the new president of France after a short Sarcozy honeymoon and kissy-kissy after the USA arrogantly dismissed “Old Europe ” under Mr W. and villified France and “French fries” even.
    The world since has realised the US did it to itself and is broke financially and moraly as world leader, apart from the Gay;POTUS and his VP and their pro-death in the womb stance and efforts to change the furst Amendmenr. AND still sin by backing nazI-gestapo SS tactics of Israel’s ruthless leaders against the entire Gaza Strip because of the many whose frustrations with the take-over in 1948 still festers and causes untold horror and violence. And returned with helicopter gunship fire indiscriminately all over their old people and children and other innocent non-combatants. The Brits tried that in the McCleary homeland and gave jus trying to kill all Catholics who were real and imagined enemies of their fake tax-supported Six Counties whose protestant leaders hate both them and “Red Socks,” the Bishop of Rome, equally now after the Parliament got tired of their whining “loyalty” and it changed tactics to allow peace to blossom.
    ANY US CATHOLIC, individual or magazine writer who has read JESUS Beatitudes and St Augustine’s Rules for war could find little justiication for WW11 AND none for SE Asia. Cenrral America and messing with Chile and Gulf 11and its aftermath that will continue there after everyone leaves is living in a make believe world of computer games, not REALITY. .

  • “I found Mr. McCleary’s comments immaturely offensive and sophomorically dismissive.”

    Not bad, you managed to mispell my name but you did manage to correctly spell sophomorically, although I haven’t been a sophomore in decades.

    “The “war is hell ” quote came from Sherman in the US Civil War.”

    Actually the quote is from a speech that Sherman gave at the Michigan Military Academy after the War:

    “I’ve been where you are now and I know just how you feel. It’s entirely natural that there should beat in the breast of every one of you a hope and desire that some day you can use the skill you have acquired here.
    Suppress it! You don’t know the horrible aspects of war. I’ve been through two wars and I know. I’ve seen cities and homes in ashes. I’ve seen thousands of men lying on the ground, their dead faces looking up at the skies. I tell you, war is Hell!”

    Of course that sentiment did not prevent Sherman from regarding the Civil War in which he fought for the Union as a completely just and necessary war.

    “AND still sin by backing nazI-gestapo SS tactics of Israel’s ruthless leaders against the entire Gaza Strip because of the many whose frustrations with the take-over in 1948 still festers and causes untold horror and violence. ”

    When in doubt, blame the JOOOS!

    “The Brits tried that in the McCleary homeland and gave jus trying to kill all Catholics who were real and imagined enemies of their fake tax-supported Six Counties whose protestant leaders hate both them and “Red Socks,” the Bishop of Rome, equally now after the Parliament got tired of their whining “loyalty” and it changed tactics to allow peace to blossom.”

    My homeland is the United States. The homelands of my ancestors, aside from the Cherokees, are Ireland and Scotland. The peace was worked out by two men, Winston Churchill and Michael Collins, who both knew something about successfully waging war.

    “ANY US CATHOLIC, individual or magazine writer who has read JESUS Beatitudes and St Augustine’s Rules for war could find little justiication for WW11 AND none for SE Asia. Cenrral America and messing with Chile and Gulf 11and its aftermath that will continue there after everyone leaves is living in a make believe world of computer games, not REALITY. .”

    I assume that you are referring to World War 2 and not World War Eleven. I disagree with you about World War 2 and Vietnam not being just wars from the US perspective. I rejoice that the people of Central America did not have Castro style regimes imposed upon them. In regard to Chile, we had no involvement in the coup that toppled Castro’s pal Allende. In regard to Gulf War I, as opposed to Gulf War Eleven, I view that conflict as completely just from the US perspective.

  • more smart alec comments. Your pro-war atttitude is so non-catholic and un-Christian. The reference to the Civil War and the Sherman quote did not need a professiorial correction, you are not in the academy as a teacher, I said the MCCLEARY, proper spelling of that name, sorry I got yours wrong, HOMELAND is as I suggested IRISH, SCOTS which is also the LATIN for the IRISH, the SCOTTI. I am of Eastern Meditterranean Irish, and Scots (maternal) extracion myself. You missed my reference to the Brits making peace, that was the modern N IRISH 1969-recent years, not the horse’ buttocks compromise made by the treachery of Churchill and the compromise that still divides Ireland politically and emotinally. I did not attack or insult JEWS. i REFERRED to the ISFRAELI army and its political manipulators, not the religion of most of its citizens. I have traveled there and spent time as a journalist there and in N Ireland and keep up with the ex-ISRAELI officers and soldiers who are disgusted at the crud they had to do and witness. I have also traveled in South America and extensively as a pilgrim and sometimes tourist and journalist all over Europe and am quite familiar with the hatred of the USA for its war-mongering. Bush W could not do a book signing in Dublin and was torn apart for his defence of his Gulf war 11. Native-son Reagan was heckled in Galway for his policies in C America when he did not visit to his ancestral homeland
    MY MAIN POINT is valid. Read, or re-read Augustine’s Rules for war AND the Beatitudes and pray about it all. Do not reply again on here with your arrogant, “mind made up” do not confuse with facts” scribbling and petty corrections (11 for II and such) Bring it to JESUS in prayer. And please include me.You may also check what General Eisenhower, after he left the presidency and LBJ said about war and its cost. Peace 11 U.

  • “more smart alec comments.”
    Remove the alec and you are correct.

    “The reference to the Civil War and the Sherman quote did not need a professiorial correction, you are not in the academy as a teacher”

    Not, but on this blog I am always willing to instruct the historically ignorant gratis.

    “I said the MCCLEARY, proper spelling of that name,”

    No, I assure you that the proper spelling of my last name is as I spell it.

    “You missed my reference to the Brits making peace, that was the modern N IRISH 1969-recent years, not the horse’ buttocks compromise made by the treachery of Churchill and the compromise that still divides Ireland politically and emotinally.”

    You of course are referring to the peace of Ireland of 1921 that gave the Irish their first independent state since the seventeenth century. There was nothing treacherous in the peace worked out by Churchill and Collins, but was rather a compromise as most peaces are. Churchill understood that it was not worth it for the Brits to try to retain Ireland outside of Ulster. Collins realized that the IRA lacked the strength to drive the Brits from Ulster and then win the ensuing war with the Ulster Protestants that would have immediately erupted.

    “I did not attack or insult JEWS.”

    Yeah, because no one associates Israel with Jews. Got it.

    “all over Europe and am quite familiar with the hatred of the USA for its war-mongering. ”

    There are few people in Europe who do not owe what peace and freedom they enjoy to US “warmongering”.

    “Native-son Reagan was heckled in Galway”

    Somehow that doesn’t surprise me since Galway is attempting to put up a statue to Castro’s hangman Che Guevara.
    http://the-american-catholic.com/2012/04/12/honoring-a-murderer-in-galway/

    “Read, or re-read Augustine’s Rules for war ”

    My constant study, along with Saint Thomas Aquinas’ variant and the variants that have been proclaimed at different times by the Church. Anyone who believes, as you do, that World War 2 was not a just war for the US obviously could use a refresher course.

    “Do not reply again on here with your arrogant, “mind made up” do not confuse with facts” scribbling and petty corrections”

    Sorry, I hadn’t noticed that you were one of the owners of this blog. Hey, wait a minute..

    “Bring it to JESUS in prayer.”
    Indeed I do, as I bring all things to Jesus prayer.

    In regard to Eisenhower quotes:

    “You are about to embark upon the Great Crusade, toward which we have
    striven these many months. The eyes of the world are upon you. The
    hopes and prayers of liberty-loving people everywhere march with you.
    In company with our brave Allies and brothers-in-arms on
    other Fronts, you will bring about the destruction of the German war
    machine, the elimination of Nazi tyranny over the oppressed peoples of
    Europe, and security for ourselves in a free world.

    Your task will not be an easy one. Your enemy is well trained, well
    equipped and battle hardened. He will fight savagely.

    But this is the year 1944! Much has happened since the Nazi triumphs of
    1940-41. The United Nations have inflicted upon the Germans great defeats,
    in open battle, man-to-man. Our air offensive has seriously reduced their
    strength in the air and their capacity to wage war on the ground. Our Home
    Fronts have given us an overwhelming superiority in weapons and munitions
    of war, and placed at our disposal great reserves of trained fighting men.
    The tide has turned! The free men of the world are marching together to
    Victory!

    I have full confidence in your courage and devotion to duty and skill in
    battle. We will accept nothing less than full Victory!

    Good luck! And let us beseech the blessing of Almighty God upon this great
    and noble undertaking.”
    ? Dwight D. Eisenhower

  • I think “The Star Spangled Banner” is a fabulous national anthem. Great musically, uses classic English – much better than some of the” lingo-speak” we hert today which passes as English, and shares the birth pangs of a nation fighting for its identity and self reliance.
    Some of the European national anthems are great musically but the words don’t mean much. 😉 ( to me anyway)
    Our national anthem is actually a hymn, written in the 1860’s I think, in the South Island city of Dunedin, during the early days of settlement and development in NZ. Ii always preferred it to “God Save the Queen” – the English national anthem which we used – much to the annoyance many Kiwis, up unitl, I think the early 1970’s before “God Defend NZ” became our anthem.
    Thanks for the history lesson ( again 🙂 ) Don. I’m surprised that it wasn’t installed officially though, till 1943.

  • The words to My Country T’is of Thee, sung to “God Save the Queen” are very meaningful to me– I usually start to cry when I get to “I love the rocks and rills, thy woods and temples hills”; but by the time I get to “my heart with rapture thrills like that above” I’m pretty enthusiastic! – and the last verse:
    Our fathers’ God to Thee,
    Author of liberty,
    To Thee we sing.
    Long may our land be bright,
    With freedom’s holy light,
    Protect us by Thy might,
    Great God our King.

  • My sainted mother Don was always fond of God Save the Queen, as she was also fond of the Queen.

  • This one’s for you, Don the Kiwi!

  • I hope someone can help me with my concern about the Yemen Al Queda’s ability to almost get another underwear bomb on a plane, foiled by a double-agent, how long more will their technicians be able to achieve that? More of a concern is that they were able to use their now infamous suicide bomb tactic to kill 86 soldiers. Is there some planet or a County in the USA or the UK where the unemployed could be forced to enlist to become the counter-terrorist force there as NATO and Co are pulling out of the failed efforts to destroy them in Iraq and Afghanistan? We can also hope that there will be no sleeping, too-trusting US President or UK PM who might sell out the area to the Enemy, whomever that may be. And still be able to borrow money from China to pay for it all.

  • Thanks again Don. Brought a lump to my throat 🙂

    A line up of some incredible Kiwi manhood there – the 2011 All Blacks.

    The Rugby World Cup final against the French last year was a great game – we won, but the French certainly were very worthy oponents. They always seem to lift when they play us.
    The All Blacks won, but it was a nail biter right to the last minute.

  • While we’re getting all nationalistic and sentimental, here’s the full version of our National anthem. Some beautiful wording.
    The history can be found on Wikipedia.

    God of Nations at Thy feet,
    In the bonds of love we meet,
    Hear our voices, we entreat,
    God defend our free land.
    Guard Pacific’s triple star
    From the shafts of strife and war,
    Make her praises heard afar,
    God defend New Zealand.
    2
    Men of every creed and race,
    Gather here before Thy face,
    Asking Thee to bless this place,
    God defend our free land.
    From dissension, envy, hate,
    And corruption guard our state,
    Make our country good and great,
    God defend New Zealand.
    3
    Peace, not war, shall be our boast,
    But, should foes assail our coast,
    Make us then a mighty host,
    God defend our free land.
    Lord of battles in Thy might,
    Put our enemies to flight,
    Let our cause be just and right,
    God defend New Zealand.
    4
    Let our love for Thee increase,
    May Thy blessings never cease,
    Give us plenty, give us peace,
    God defend our free land.
    From dishonour and from shame,
    Guard our country’s spotless name,
    Crown her with immortal fame,
    God defend New Zealand.
    5
    May our mountains ever be
    Freedom’s ramparts on the sea,
    Make us faithful unto Thee,
    God defend our free land.
    Guide her in the nations’ van,
    Preaching love and truth to man,
    Working out Thy glorious plan,
    God defend New Zealand.

    Its obviously too long to be used in its full length, – but I particularly like the last verse to be used in the usual 3 verse rendition of the anthem.

  • I like the style of the NZ anthem, praises the normal, the natural beauty and invokes God. My earlier references to Ike and war implied his famous farewell reference to the dangers of the military-industrial complex. Then his statement at one point that a nation needs violence for self-defence then moved on to advocate peace and stability. Jesus was the icon of the invisible God as Paul tells us, all humans are made in God’s image and likeness. Using our men and wmen as fodder in wars whose winners are never really known has not done much for the life, treasure and stability of the world for a while. The war to end all wars fathered another one. Trying to wipe out threats to economics/capitalism/God’s/Side, political ideology, onto more defeating of communism, and defeating terrorism is a spiral that seems to have no end. More so now as NATO exits the Coalition and the seeds of the next conflict, and possible 9/11 ~ Two or a real shoe bomb expolsion is not improbable. As experts warned after 9/11, the question was not whether, but when. .

  • “My earlier references to Ike and war implied his famous farewell reference to the dangers of the military-industrial complex.”

    I understood your reference, and it is directly contradicted by much else that Eisenhower said throughout his career. During his administration Eisenhower opposed building up conventional forces due to cost and favored a policy of massivenuclear retaliation in the event of conflict with the Soviet Union and the use of battlefield nukes to make up for the relatively weak US conventional forces. The issue of a weak US military was a theme that Kennedy used relentlessly during his campaign in 1960, much to Eisenhower’s considerable annoyance. His reference to a military-industrial complex, was actually a slap at the incoming Kennedy administration and his Democrat Congressional critics.

    https://www.facebook.com/notes/gregory-hilton/ikes-farewell-address-liberals-are-wrong-about-the-military-industrial-complex-b/10150140028336028

  • I have been reading “Mindzenty the MAN” today and can’t help but wonder as I read the words of both Mr. Mac and Mr. O’B. I wonder about Eisenhower and about war, what I should believe about generals and politicians and war in the late 40’s and 50’s in eastern Europe, (specific Hungary). What good influence could Eisenhower have had if he had really wanted to… back at the end of the war and the fall of Berlin to the Russians.
    I’ve got a little prayer book “Mary Save Us” smuggled out from Siberia that was handwritten and tied together by a young woman, a catechism teacher from Lativia during her imprisonment in Siberia. It still startles me that growing up in the 50’s and 60’s I was really so unaware of what was going on in Russia and China. (South America too)
    Yes war is hell… there was also hell for millions of people during the “cold” war. I don’t know what the right answers are.

  • I appreciate the context of Ike’s comments, that was before my time of course but the quote is cited quite regularly at the end of various daily posts of meditations and uplifting thoughts. The one about use of violence as a prelude to stability/peace is also used. I am still a Jesus pacifist, irrational as it seems as the alternative seems not to work whether for spear chuckers or nuclear threats of MAD. Peace- BTW the original form of the family name is O’CLEIRIGH. descendant of CLERIC, also known as Clerk, same idea, they were the only educated ones. It is spelled CLERKIN in the North of Ireland and in the ROI as CLERY, CLEARY, they made our boarding College school blazers!