Lest Darkness Fall
By Mike Crane
Walking battlefields, can be a very inspiring event. So many thoughts run through your mind. The courage of gallant men, their sacrifices and honour. The impact of the ebb and flow of combat on our current lives. This is particularly true for War of Southern Independence or War of Northern Aggression battlefields. For these battlefields were not only a mortal contest between courageous men, but an intense battle over our form of government and the very foundations of American Liberty.
On a recent trip to the Petersburg battlefield, thoughts were racing through my mind as always. But unlike at other famous battlefields, Manassas, Ft. Sumter, Chickamauga these were dark thoughts, dark and gloomy. On this hallowed ground, I forever settled in my mind, the proper name for this War. This thin Grey Line, was all that stood between the defense of American Liberty and an indefinite period of increasing darkness. On this ground was fought a War of invasion and aggression, northern aggression. When this line crumbled, overrun by literally thousands of invading northerners, sadly began the decline of American Liberty created by Southern Men in 1776. This long thin line of Grey was the last barrier between American Liberty and the darkness that our country and the US have been slipping into ever since.
While walking along Harrison Creek, where the advance from Ft. Stedman stalled in the face of overwhelming numbers, my thoughts turned to what we have lost. American Liberty, the very founding principles of the United States were following the advance and retreat of this battle. The results are very sad. When this line of Grey crumpled and began retreating, I am sure sadness was felt by men such as Thomas Jefferson, Patrick Henry and James Mason, for their great sacrifices and wisdom was what was at stake. Looking down upon the ebb and tide of this battle, they would have known that their creation, American Liberty, had lost.
Today there are US flags fluttering in the wind, gloating over the blood and defeat of the defenders of American Liberty, our Confederate forefathers. No where to be seen, was even one token Flag in memory of the men who died in their effort to preserve American Liberty for us, their future generations. Mind you, not a single Flag in their honour, not one single Flag in honour of our country. Not a single Flag to remind us of what our forefathers fought for and to show respect.
I am very proud to state that before the end of the day, our Flag of Honour and Distinction was very obvious on the National Park Service Petersburg Battlefield. All around the “Keep Off” signs at Fort Stedman, where one last effort was made against overwhelming odds, flew our Battleflag. Across the very ground tread in the desperate effort to break the line of the invaders of our country, around The Crater, in the homestead of residents burned out in typical yankee style, along the breastworks where our Confederate forefathers gallantly made their stand. Briefly, perhaps very briefly, Confederate Flags greatly outnumbered the US flag.
Walking along the march taken in the advance on Fort Stedman, counting the 228 paces, I could not help but wonder what was going through the minds of these men. Surely by this late in the War they were aware of the odds they were facing. They knew they were outnumbered, out gunned. But on they came, pace by pace. Taking Fort Stedman, they marched on, facing even greater numbers, then slowly falling back. The odds had just been too great to overcome. Walking along the Confederate breastworks, where the retreat from Ft. Stedman would have been visible, I could imagine how the soldiers felt standing there, watching the failure of the attempted breakthrough and knowing what it meant.
Leaving the US Park, which so plainly takes better care of the union lines than the Confederate as would be expected of an occupation government, I was eternally grateful for the likes of my Confederate forefathers. Against such odds, during what must have been very dark days they cared enough about their freedom and their future generations to face such a formidable enemy.
Then following miles of works along the roads of Petersburg, which have been ignored by the Park Service, we came upon one of the finest tributes to the defenders of American Liberty that I have ever seen. Standing alone in a large field, without fancy paths, parking lots or signs to “Keep Off” was Fort Gregg. Here there were no US flags - only Battleflags.
On this ground, a small contingent of Confederates held thousands of invading infidels at bay for two hours allowing Lee to evacuate the army from Petersburg. Imagine being assigned to Fort Gregg, knowing that Lee was retreating and thousands of the invading horde were descending upon you. But those Confederates ignored the terrible odds and stood their ground, very firmly and stubbornly they held their ground. As large numbers of yankees swarmed over the wall, a young artillery corporal manning a piece, stood with lanyard taunt and ready. The yankees yelled, “ Drop the lanyard or we will fire!”. Instantly came the reply, “Fire and be damned!” as he pulled the lanyard. Immediately the remaining “damned” yankees sent this young Southern man to meet his Creator.
And therein lies a wealth of wisdom, for today we face an approaching darkness that is gloomier than the dismal situation these men were in. With Lee’s surrender, the defenders of American Liberty have lost forever the opportunity to defend American Liberty by force-of-arms. The odds that we face today are greater than those at Fort Gregg and their Comrades-In-Arms throughout our War for Independence.
The Men in Grey had the power of still sovereign States behind them, and their State was their country. 132 years of Reconstruction and ever increasing centralised government have reduced the States to mere political subdivisions of the supreme central government, strangely founded upon the principle of “limited government”. On our watch, the states have continued to decline at an ever increasing rate. No longer are the states capable of providing a “check” on the central government.
The Men in Grey, came from a prosperous region, so prosperous that it paid ¾ of all the main source of central government revenue, tariffs. The much more heavily populated region to the north only had the prosperity to pay ¼ and looked upon the wealth of the South with greed. To satisfy this greed the north waged a war of aggression and freely sacrificed large numbers of its citizens to increase its material prosperity. During and in the aftermath of the War the South was pillaged and plundered until it became one of the poorest regions of the planet.
Today the South is again becoming a prosperous region. But this is a type of prosperity that would have been foreign to the defenders of American Liberty. The citizens of the South not only pay close to 50% of their labour in tribute to an out of control government, but despite the allusions of yankee materialistic prosperity have accumulated their unwilling share of almost $6,000,000,000,000.00 of debt to be passed on to our future generations. Our unwilling share of this occupation government debt is over $20,000.00 for each man, woman and child in our country and for our annual tribute and share of debt, we get a decaying society and culture.
In 1776, Southern Men created American Liberty. In 1860 Southern Men defended American Liberty. What will our future generations read in their history books about us?
So many will ask, “But can anything be done?” “When such great men failed, and we have so much less to support our effort to restore American Liberty, what can we possibly do?” A very, very tough question, but one that must be answered if we care as much about our future generations as our forefathers did!
The answer may lie in the wisdom of the young artillery corporal. “Fire and be damned.”
With the destruction of the South, these united States lost the principles upon which they were founded and became the United States, irrevocably changing the form of government. The United States has used 132 years of Reconstruction in their effort to eliminate the commitment of the South to American Liberty. But so far Reconstruction has failed, for the ideas upon which our country and the US were founded have not been forgotten. Although we have much less to work with than our forefathers, the occupation government may have larger problems than we do. Just as Thomas Jefferson predicted, it has become corrupt, Godless and is hopelessly and irrevocably in debt from the greed of the victors. The occupation government is “damned” and sadly it will fall of its own accord.
Let us rebuild our country and without force-of-arms, without great wealth, but with commitment and with the Will of God we can rise above the “damned” as it slides into the darkness which sadly is its destiny.
Let our future generations read that in 1776 Southern Men created American Liberty, in the 1860’s they defended American Liberty and in ???? Southern Men restored American Liberty to its rightful place among the nations of mankind.
Lest Darkness Fall, it is time for Southern Men to stand tall again!