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tv   Book Discussion  CSPAN  October 24, 2014 11:49pm-12:44am EDT

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and then you will reconstruct this picture of the mona lisa from your blood flow inside the brain and then when you fall asleep it records your memory of your dream. in the future you may wake up and see the dream you had that you had the previous night and we can also begin to hand things like lucid dreaming which is something right out of science fiction. it's when your conscious while you are dreaming and it was once considered we proved that it is real. and you can now control the stream while you are dreaming so have any of you had this episode of dreaming that unity you are dreaming while you are dreaming? and hundreds of people have done it and you can train yourself on
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the internet. and it's true. these are pictures of an elephant and pictures of a human and then on the right is the computer reconstruction of what you're looking at. and the big one is mental on us. why is it a billion dollars into this initiative to follow one of the most ancient diseases, mental illness. millions of them will suffer anxiety and what is mental illness? for example, schizophrenia is when you hear voices. however, when you put this person in this you find something interesting. the left part of the brain lights up because that part of the brain talks with elves and when you talk to yourself left part of the brain generates
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voices and that's how you'd talk to yourself. but it knows that the left part of the brain is talking to itself. so these people light up without their permission and they are unaware that they are talking to themselves and you can see that for the first time in history and you can now look at joan of arc and many historical figures and it turns out that a certain fraction of people also think that they are talking to god. and it was meant to be that way. if somebody falls it's because it was meant to be that way and we think that joan of arc suffered from hyper religiosity. and we can actually put a helmet
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into the temporal cortex of the brain to induce a feeling of being in the presence of god. and we can actually induces feeling and the scientist, of course we like to experiment, we put in a distant side and that atheist was in this. afterwards we asked him about this and catholic nun and her beliefs shaken because you can induces within a switch and she said no, she said that god made us with the telephone system so that we can create with god. we can't win.
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and so super genius is one of many things we talk about in the book. some people have had this of the temporal loeb, after with both of them emerged as mathematical geniuses. so tonight when you go home you should not pick up a hammer thinking that you're going to be the next einstein, although it has happened several times in the past, this person could take a helicopter ride over the harbor of new york and draw the entire skyline of new york city down to every window and you can see it at the jfk airport. next time you landon jfk, lookup as you see this drawn from memory by this individual and of course einstein is the greatest genius of all time in his brain is still with us today.
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it is different, not by much. and i'm sort of running out of time. so let me just wind up on this note and if you have further questions you can be my guest of reading my book. so when i was a kid growing up, my role model was albert einstein, and my favorite story is this. he was an old man he was tired of giving the same talk over and over again until one day his chauffeur said, i'm only a part-time actor. i heard use the so many times and so why don't we switch places. i will put on a mustache and awake and you can put on my hat. you can put on my uniform and be my chauffeur. and so this went along famously
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until one day a mathematician in the back after very difficult question and the chauffeur said that question is so elementary that even my chauffeur here can answer it for you. thank you very much, you've been a great audience. thank you so much. >> here are a few of the comments we have received to our campaign debate coverage. >> i'm looking at the campaign 2014. it was between representative scott peters and it's politics as usual and what we really need is for the politicians to quit making decisions based on power and money and vote and to start working together at a higher
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level seeking the best decisions for the american people. i'm to the point that if there is any kind of political event, both republicans and democrats and any other party that wants to get involved should organize a from the get-go, learning to work together at this event that they can work together at a higher level on all the issues that americans are concerned about and get the best decision by reasoning together instead of it based on power and money and votes. we win and you lose. >> thank you for airing the debate, just watch the vermont governors debate and when i
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first saw that there were seven candidates on the stage, i thought it was going to be a circus, but i'm glad that i got over that. and i was really impressed with some of the ideas some of the candidates suggestions that they made particularly when they said an educated work horses to the benefit of the country. we should be paying students to school not charging them and putting them into debt for going to school. and i really like a woman candidate in refusing to debate that didn't include everybody that was on the ballot. the and it's time that the americans learned that we don't have to choose between a democrat and republican. there are more political
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candidates in this country and time we started looking at some of the others. thanks again for your c-span for airing these debates. >> call center phone number at or e-mail us at comments at the >> join the conversation or hollis on twitter. >> next, james mcpherson. he talks about his recently published book, "embattled rebel." this is 55 minutes. [inaudible conversations] ..
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really needs no introduction, i'm sure you all know all about him and his work. james mcpherson got his ph.d from johns hopkins university. he is currently professor emeritus of history at princeton university. former president of the american historical association, he is
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recipient of the 2007 military library literature award. a former jefferson lecturer of the national endowment nor humanities. very active in efforts to preserve civil war battlefields, and i'm sure he is aware of whates going on down the flood franklin. author of battle cry of freedom, lincoln as commander in chief, which received the lincoln prize. and for comrades receiving lincoln prize. going to talk about his newest work, eminem battled rebel: jefferson davis as commander in chief. >> my apologies for keeping you lating or perhaps i should
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require the gentleman from sabotaged the air traffic control mechanics at chicago about ten days ago, because everything is sill late out of -- still late out of chicago, and it's been in chicago as part of the book tour for this book. now, just about everybody who knows something about the civil war is familiar with the problems that president abraham lincoln had with general george b. mccell land who he described as a general who would not fight. less familiar, except maybe here in the south dish i'm not sure about that -- is the story of similar tensions between jefferson daynes and one of his generals, joseph johnston. the hostility between johnston
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and davis became more intense, lasted longer and had a more impact on the confederate war effort than did the lincoln mcclelland conflict. davis from miss and is john -- from mississippi and johnston withfellow cadets. they knew each other but were not close. a rumor later circumstance lated that they had had a fight over a girl at the academy, but that story is almost certainly -- be that as it may, when the war began and virginia ceded, johnston resigned,. those two armies combined to win the first battle of what became eventually the first battle but the battle of mannas sass on
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july 21, 1861. in the two months before that battle, many people in the south had expected jefferson davis to take personal command of the main confederate army. after all, davis graduated from west point, served as a regular army officer for seven years, he had commanded the mississippi volunteer regiment very well in the mexican war, from which he marriaged as an authentic and wounded war hero. and he had served as a very fine secretary of war in the frank frank -- the franklin pears administration. when the confederate government was formed, davis hoped to be appoint as general in chief of the army. instead he was elected president, which made him commander in chief, a civilian position but one that gave hem authority over his army commanders. davis at first actually intimated he might take command
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of troops in the field in virginia. joseph johnston himself urged davis in 1861, as johnson put it, to appear in the position general washington occupied in the revolution. civil affairs can be postponed. but davis discovered that as president, he could not postpone or ignore civil awares in orders to take the field as commander in chief. still, he itched to do so. even though he was required to stay in richmond to address the confederate congress when it met there for the first time on july 20, 1861. after addressing the congress, though, on the hot morning of july 21st, he could stand the suspense no longer. he knew that the combined armies of -- were at manassas. he commandeered a special train, and with a civil aide, chugged
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north, arrives at manassas junction at mid-afternoon. he borrowed a horse and rode toward the sounds of gun. he was dismayed by what encountered. stragglers wearing wounds of defeat, the damaged equipment, the usual from the rear of the battlefield. he tried rally the stragglers. i am president davis, he shouted. follow me back to the field. some of them did. by the time davis reached johnston's headquarters, where he found the general sending reinforcements to the front, it was clear that the confederates won the battle. union troops were in retreat. davis rode farther forward and addressed soldierses. that evening, davis met with johnston and beaugard at headquarters. davis wanted to organize a pure suit of the enemy, and he suggest ode one general order
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such a movement. they remained silent, presumably because as commander in chief davis was now in charge. he began to dictate an order, but on reflection and further information about the disorganized nature of the confederate army, and more consultation, they connect nat the darkness and to effective pursuit was impossible. the next day heavy rain brought the reconnaissance to a halt. even to the davis was most eager to follow up the victory impressively, the impression agree up in the south it was he who discouraged pursuit. beauregard said this myth -- this was the beginning of a growing rift between the two that became second only to the eventual chasm between johnston
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and davis. but in the summer of 1861. davis and johnston remained on pretty good terms. they cordiality became seriously trained in september over the question of johnston's ranking on the list of confederate journals inch may 1861 the confederate congress authorized the appointment of five full general, the equivalent of four-star generals. the law specified their rank order would be equivalent to their relative grade in the united states army in the same branch of the service before they resigned to go south. thus davis gave the top ranking to samuel cooper, who i expect not many of you have heard as, at secretary general, the same position he nailed the old army and now a desk job in risk. davis named his long-time friend elbert sidney johnston, on his
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way from california but had not yet commanded confederate 'troops. and followed by robert e. lee, who was commanding a small army trying unsuccessfully to push union troops out of the western part of virginia that subsequently became west virginia. davis rounded out the list of five full generals with joseph johnston as number four, and beau regular guard as number 5. when joe nonstop learned of his number four ranking he exploded in earning. all along he assumed he was number one based on position as quarter master general, while the three that davis ranked above him had been connells. johnston stat down and wrote a blistering letter to davis, venting his outrage. the president's action, johnston told him, was a studied indignity that tarnished my fair name as a soldier man, and was a blow aimed at me only.
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especially since he was in command during the great victory at manassas and those ranked below him had not yet struck a blow for the confederacy as he put it. this angry misssive reached davis when he was suffering one of his frequent bouts of illness. this time a recurrence of malaria, which sharpened the's his reply. re acknowledged receiving johnston's letter and add, its language is, as you say, unusual. its arguments and statements it arely one-sided and insinuations as unfounded as they are unbecoming. that was it. no response to johnston's argument notches explanation of the reason for the ranking. such an explanation would have pounded out that johnston's grade as a line officer in the old officer was lieutenant colonel, while the three men that davis ranked above him had been full colonels.
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johnston's brigadier generalship in the old army was in a staff position, while his branch of service in the confederate army was as a line officer. so under the terms of the law, his prewar grade was below that of the others. even if davis had bothered to explain all this complicated business to johnston, the general would not have been satisfied. the insult to his honor, as he considered it, rankled him for the rest of his life. he dropped the matter for now, though, and neither he nor davis mentioned it to each other again. but given the large and brittle egos of both men, it remained a festering issue in the recesses of both of their minds. they had a war to fight, though, against a different enemy, the yankees. so for the next six months they keep as commander in chief and top field general in virginia to confront the enemy threat.
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bea ryu regard was transferred to the western theater in tennessee and lee went to south carolina to organize the south atlantic coastal defenses. johnston organized and trained his growing army, occupying the centerville manassas line in northern virginia, where its faced a larger union army under mccell land, who was subject to increasing pressure from lincoln and from congress to do something. with that army. concern that mcclellan might in fact do something, davis summoned johnston to a strategy meeting in richmond in february 1862. they discussed the vulnerability of johnston's army at centerville, to a flanking movement by mcclelland via the river. they agreed that johnston should pull back to a more protectable area but the condition of the
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roads caused by winter rain and the chaotic state of the overwork railroads made a quick withdrawal impossible. davis ordered johnston to send his large guns, camp equipment, stockpiles of meat south as transportation became available, and to prepare to retreat with the army itself when he received orders to do so. but in early march, 1862, johnston began a precipitous withdrawal when his -- detected federal activity he thought was the beginning of mccell land's anticipateed flanking movement. he said he feared a leak, later. johnston fell back to quickly he was compelled to leave behind or destroy his heavy guns, ammunition, and mounds of supplies, including 750 tons of meat and other food stuffs, so that the confederacy could ill afford to lose in richmond,
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davis heard rumors of this retreat, but as he later told johnston, i was at a loss to believe it. davis' distress at the destruction of supplies was acute. and this blow came at a tim of other confederate defeats in the west, in tennessee and in north carolina. these reverses and davis' waning confidence in johnston caused the from re-call robert e. lieu from charleston and install him as his top military adviser, a sort of general in chief in richmond. one of lee's first activities in this capacity was to instruct general thomas j. jackson, famous stonewall jackson, to carry out diversionary attacks in the shen endowould valley.
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and -- davis and lee ordered johnston to bring his lines to block mcclellan. johnston wanted to concentrate the army near richmond but lee and davis opposed that plan. lee argued for make thing stand at yorktown where the army's flanks could be protected by the big guns on the narrows of the york river, and by the css virginia, the iron clad ship rebuilt from the scuttled and captured merry macon the james river. this was a more defense able position and davis supported him. they would have to abandon the navy yard, the base for the css virginia. davis therefore ordered johnston to yorktown, where he confronted
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the 110,000 troops with his own dug insure army of 60,000 -- dug-in army of 60,000 men. instead of attacking mcclellan brought up his big guns and prepared to pulverize defenses with heavy artillery. now, despite having been overruled by davis, johnston still intended to evacuate the yorktown lines without a fight. he delayed that move until mcclellan was ready to open with his siege artillery. johnston failed to keep lee and davis informed until the last minute, on may 1 inch, when the told the president he must pull out the next night. davis was shocked. he replied that such a sudden retreat would mean to the loss of norfolk and perhaps of the virginia and other ships under construction there. johnston agreed to wait. for one more day.
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on the night of may 3/4, his army stealthily left the yorktown line and began a retreat towards richmond. the confederates fought a rear guard battle with the federallings pursuing at women williamsberg, continued in a new line. norfolk did fall to the yankees and the virginia's crew had to blow her up because her draft was too great to get up the james river. davis was dismayed by these developments. he allowed his anguish to week la a letter to johnston lamenting what davis called the drooping cause of our country. the as citizennible purpose of this letter was to prod johnston into carrying out davis' earlier orders to group regular meants together as a boost to morale help told johnston, some have suppressed surprise at my patient with you when orders to
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you were not observed. johnston recognized this rebuke for what it was, an expression of ex-aspiration with his conduct of the campaign. if he had received such a letter from someone who could be held to personal accountability, johnston told his wife, he would have challenged him to a duel. the scenario of retreat without informing davis was repeated yet again two weeks later. the president expected johnston to depend the line of the river and even to launch a counterattack if he stopped mcclellan, but without informing davis johnston decided to withdraw to a new position only four miles east of richmond. when the president rode out on horse baeck, as he frequently did when the armies were in the vicinity rhythm, when he rode out on may 18th to visit
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johnston on the river he was taken aback when he uncounterred the army before he had gone more than a few miles. davis confronted johnston and asked why he pulled back so close to the city. the general replied that the ground was so swampy and the drinking water so bad in the lowland that he had moved to better ground, and a safer supply of water. davis was unnerved. you intend to give up richmond without a battle? johnston's reply struck difference as equivocal. the president responded. he told johnston, according to one of davis' aides, who was present, that if he was not going to give battle, he would appoint someone to the command who would. davis rode back to richmond and summoned his cabinet and general lee to a meeting the following day. he asked johnston also to taped
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-- to attend so everyone could learn of the general's intentions. that afternoon, davis wrote to his wife, who had taken the family to north carolina because of the danger to richmond, h: i have been waiting all day for johnston to communicate his plans we're uncertain of everthing except that a battle must be near at hand. johnston never did show up. but davis went ahead with the meeting, where re expressed anxiety about the fate of richmond. according to postmaster general, lee became emotional. richmond must not be given up, lee declared. it shall not be given up. as lee spoke, riggen recalled, tears ran down his cheeks. i have seen him on many occasions and times when the very fate of the con fed was si -- confederacy was in the balance but never saw him show deep emotion. the next day davis ensured the
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virginia legislature that richmond would be defended. johnston finally seemed to get the message. mcclellan has crossed the river with part of his army, leaving the other part northeast of the stream. johnston told davis he planned to attack that part northeast of the stream on may 22nd. davis had earlier discussed just such a plan of attack, and so he approved of johnston's plan. he rode out to the bluff overlooking the valley that day to see the action commence, as he wrote to his wife. but he found nothing happening. and no one who could tell him why the attack had been called off. it turned out that scouts had learned the enemy was strongly posted behind beaver dam creek so the attack had been beard. davis was depressed. thus ended the offensive/defensive program, he wrote his wife, from which lee expected much and of which i was
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hopeful. and almost exactly the same thing happened again one week later. once more johnston planned to attack the enemy's right flank north of the river, and once more, he called it off without informing davis, who had begin ridden out to watch the battle. johnston this time had changed his mind and decided instead to attack the two enemy cores south of the river and nearest to richmond. he explained later that he did not tell davis of this change -- these are johnston's words -- because it seemed to me that to too so would be to transfer my responsibilities to his shoulders. i could not consult him without adopting the course re might advise, so to ask him for advice would be to asked him to command for me. johnston's decidedly peculiar notion of the correct relationship with his commander in chief meant that davis first learned of the general's change of plan when he heard artillery
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firing on the afternoon of may 31st. he quickly left his office, mounted his horse and road toward the sound of the gun. when re arrived near the village of seven pines a few miles from richmond, which gave its name to the battle, he johnston riding away. davis' aides were convinced the general had left in order to avoid davis. the battle was not going well for the confederates. as dusk approached, it was clear that their attack had failed. at that moment, stretcher bearers passed the president's party carrying a seriously wounded johnston to the rear. all an moss any forgotten -- animosity forgotten, davis spoke to him in genuine concern. it was clear while his wounds were not northal, he would be out of action for several months. as davis and lee rode together back to richmond that night, the
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president told lee that he was now the commander of what lee would soon designate as the army of northern virginia. a new era would dawn with that army's new name, and its new commander. johnston's recovery took almost six months. during that time he moved into the richmond home of senator lewis wheatfall of texas. a violent, heavy drinking, fire-eating secessionist who had engaged in several duels and killed one man. despite differences in personalities, johnston and wigfall became close friends. wigfall had initially supported jefferson davis but they had come to a parting of the ways and wigfall became davis' most pugnacious critic in congress. during johnston's convalesce sense, he and the senator no doubt had many conversations that reinforced their growing
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mutual hostility towards the president. when johnston reported himself fit for duty again in november 1862, davis faced the dilemma of what duty to assign him. what johnson would have liked was return to command of the army of the northern virginia but there was no chance of that. lee made that army his own. all other confederate field armies also had commanders. davis decided to make johnston a sort of theater commander, giving him responsibility for the vast region between the appalachian mountains and the mississippi river, including several armies, principally braxton bragg's army of tennessee and john c. pemberton's army of mississippi. confederate prospects in that theater recently improved after devastating losses earlier in the year, but pemberton's old on vicksburg and the lower mississippi was still threatened, and bragg's position in middle tennessee, near
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murfreesboro, was still threatened and precarious, after his retreat from his abortive attack in kentucky kentucky. davis thought he was conferring important responsibility and prestige commence vat riff the general's amibition. but johnston saw it otherwise, seeing it as an effort, as johnston put it to put me on the shelf by giving johnston a position with no real authority. that was not davis' purpose at all. though he gave some substance to that suspicion by requiring bragg and pemberton to report directly to richmond and johnston. johnston could have made much more of his command if he had chosen to do so, but he preferred to complain about his lack of that and to express his desire for a real army command.
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but when davis gave him that opportunity in early 1863, johnston declined it. dissension in the army of tennessee had grown worse after its second retreat in january following the battle of murfreesboro, or as it was called in the north, stone's river. a cabal of core and division commanders in the army blame bragg for inend leadership and acted to have him replaced. davis instructed johnston to investigate this and take command of the army itself if he found the complaints against bragg justified. but johnston gave bragg a clean bill of halve, telling davis that the army's operations under bragg, quote, emits great vigorous and skill. the interest of the service requires that general bragg should not be removed. nevertheless, the in-fighting among the high-ranking officers in the army of tennessee only
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grew worse. in march 1863, davis ordered johnston to take field command of the army and to send bragg to richmond for re-assignment. however, johnston once again managed to avoid obedience to his commander in chief's wishes. when he arrived at bragg's headquarters in tennessee, johnston learned that bragg's wife was seriously ill so the general could not be sent away. then johnston himself fell sick. on april 10th he reported he was not now able to serve in the field. by the time johnston had recovered a few weeks later from his illness, the theme of concern shifted to mississippi where union general ulises s. grant launched his campaign against vicksburg. the lost of that bastion would be a staggering blow to the con fed was si. on may -- confederacy. on may 9th.
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davis ordered johnston to mississippi to take personal command of the troops there. johnston arrived at jackson, the state capitol, on may 13th to find that grant's army was about to capture the city and was preparing to turn west towards vicksburg itself. johnston wired richmond, i am too late. this pessimism set the tone for johnston's efforts, or the lack thereof, during the next seven weeks. he ordered general pemberton to evacuate vicksburg and combined his army with johnston's small force, to form mobile army to defeat grant. pemberton was reluctant because davis telegraphed him a week earlier to hold both vicksburg and fort hudson as necessary. many southerners were already skeptical of pemberton baud -- because he was a native of
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pennsylvania but had chosen to 0 go with the con fed was si because he married a southern woman. pemberton feared if he obeyed instructions to abandon vicksburg he would be accused in the south of treason in any event, grant's victories aft champions hill on may 16th and the big black river on the 17th drove pemberton's 30,000 men back into the vicksburg defenses. the failure of two union attacks again the for middable works, caused grant to settle down for a siege. davis scraped together reinforcements for johnston, building up his force to about 25,000 men, hovering east of vicksburg. davis urged johnston to attack grant's rear and break through to reinforce pemberton, but johnston said his troops were too small.
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in vicksburg, though, the hope that johnston would rescue them buoyed both soldiers and civilians who were under siege. the vicksburg newspaper, now being presented on wall paper because it had run out of newsprint, reported that the undaunted johnston is at hand. hold out a few days longer and our lines will be open. the enemy driven away. the siege raised. but johnston was daunted, and he was not at hand. on june 15th he wired secretary of war, james seton, i consider saving vicksburg hopeless. a war department official reported that davis was, quote, furious with johnston. the president directed seton to reply you telegram grieves and alarms us. vicksburg must not be lost, at least without a struggle. the interests and the honor of the con fed was si nor bid it --
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confederacy for bit it. rely on you avert at the loss. it better resource does not offer you must hazard attack. but johnston did not hazard attack. on the 4th of july the starving garrison surrendered. when the news reached richmond davis was bitter against johnston. when the chief said that vicksburg fell because of a went of provisions, davis replied, yes, from want of provisions inside and a general outside who wouldn't fight. johnston retreated to the state capital at job son, sherman pursued and began to surround the city. hoping to salvage something from what he called at the disastrous termination of the siege of vicksburg, davis urged johnston to hold the state capital if pop. the important of your position is apparent, he told johnston,
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and you will not fail to employ ploy all available means to ensure success. but johnston feared so he evacuated jackson on july 16th he left to hastily he failed to secure some 400 railroad cars and locomotives which the confederacy would sorely miss. davis relieved johnston of his theater command, making bragg independent of him and leaving johnston in control only of the troops he had evacuated from jackson. davis also wrote a 15-page fleeter his own hand, charging johnston with what amended to dereliction of duty. johnston fired back, heatedly denying the charge and blaming pemberton. this exchange inning now rated what johnston's biographer described as a paper war between the partisans of davis and those of johnston, that increasingly poisoned the body politic of the
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confederacy. three months after the fall of vicksburg, mary chestnut wrote that her husband, james, member of the staff, told her husband after an inspection trip that every man thought well of johnston. he knows the president detests joe johnston for all the trouble he has given him, and general joe returns the compliment with compound interest. his hatred of jeff days davis amounts to a religion. this mutual hostility obviously had an important impact on confederate operations. davis' biggest headache in the autumn of 1863, however, was what to do about braxton bragg and the army of tennessee. chronic dissension between bragg and his senior generals continued to plague that army, even after its tactical victory in september.
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this victory -- strategic results because the defeated enemy remained in control of chattanooga da. both the bragg's subordinates blame him, he blamed them. davis twice tried to persuade robert e. lee to go south and take command of the troubled army, but lee convinced the president that is was more important for him to remain in virginia. in october, davis himself made the trip to georgia to sort out the problems between bragg and his suburb nats. every -- subordinates. every several pain philadelphia confrontations davis decided to keep bragg in command. one reason for that controversial decision was that the logical alternative bragg was johnston. davis had tried to get johnston to take direct command of that army back in the spring, but of course that hadn't worked and now davis was so angry at
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johnston that a renewed offer seemed impossible. but after bragg's disastrous defeat in chattanooga in november, the pressure on davis from all quarters, most quarters, at least next, in the south to appoint johnston, became overwhelming. davis first tried -- well, he did actually name general will rum hardy to the both but hardy turned it down because he didn't feel up to the task of leading that afflicted organization. so in the end davis really had nowhere else to go than johnston, who became the army of tennessee's new commander in december of 1863. johnston set to work to re-organize the army and prepare it for the spring offensive by sherman that everybody knew was coming. davis hoped that johnston could march on sherman and launch a preemptive offensive that night
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but the generals back on their heels. but from johnston's hurricane came a stead stream of dispatches describing the desive sunday of the army nat made offensive impossible. the mayory, quote, as not -- the army, quote, has not entirely recovered its confidence, johnston same the artillery is deficient and undisciplined. the horses are not in good condition. the troops have neither subsistence nor field transportation enough, and the enemy outnumbers me almost two to one. abraham lincoln could simple pa these with davis because lincoln received endless messages of frock mcclellan in 1862. they were closer to the truth in johnston's case than in mccheck lan to be sure but davis knew that the same problems existed in lee0s army in northern virginia, indeed existed back in the spring of 1863 just before its spectacular victory at chancellor'sville.
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but it became imminent include clear to davis he could expect nothing like chancellor'sville from johnson. he did hope that johnston might stop sherman's offensive or at least make him pay heavily for it, as lee was making grant pay in virginia. but in georgia, sherman repeat lid flanked johnston's defensive positions and forced him backstep-by-step, 0 miles to the outskirts of atlanta but the first week of july. johnston kept his army intact in these retreats, but he yielded valuable territory and raised doubts in richmond about whether he intended to defend atlanta, which was not only an important railroad and manufacturing center but had become a symbol of confederate resistance second only to richmond itself. davis agreed with secretary of war war's appraisal of johnston's
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strategy. seton said johnston's theory of war seemed to be never to fight unless strong enough to overwhelm your enemy and then merely to continue to elude him. davis might also have agreed with a modern historian of this campaign, richmond -- richard mcmurray, what not being entirely fa since that if johnson had remained in command he would have fog the crucial battle of the atlanta campaign at key west. by the 4th of july johnston had build back to the river just north of atlanta. he assured senator benjamin hill of georgia he could hold that line against sherman for at least 50 dies. hill within to richmond and conveyed this assurance to davis. with a wry smile, davis just showed a telegram he received announcing sherman hood crossed
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the river. davis decided that johnston had to go. the cabinet agreed nancely. the secretary of state benjamin voiced their conviction. johnston is determined not to fight. it is of in use to reinforce him. he is not going to fight. davis knew that relieving johnston would be an enormously controversial act, but he wasn't sure who would replace him. he decided to give johnston one last chance. on july 16th he telegraphed the general, i wish to hear from you as to present situation and your plan of operation. johnston replied, my plan of operations must depend upon that of the enemy. it is mainly to watch for an opportunity to fight for advantage. we are trying to put atlanta in a condition to be held for a day or two by the georgia militia, that army moms may be freer -- movements may be freer and
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wider. the georgia militia? a day or two? to davis this reply meant that johnston was ready to yield atlanta to the enemy, just as it seemed back in 1862 that he might not defend richmond, and in 1863, that he failed to try to rescue vicksburg. on july 17th, davis replaced johnston with john bell hood, the crippled but bellicose transfer from the army of northern virginia. hood did manage to hold off sherman for six weeks, and later even invaded tennessee. but at the cost of virtually destroying the army of tennessee, here at the battle of nashville. this unhappy -- caused many contemporaries and later historians to condemn davis' removal of johnston as his greatest mistake as commander in chief. many of those contemporaries,
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and a goodman historians also have taken johnston's side in his ongoing differences with davis. i leave it to each of you to decide where you stand on this matter. and with that, i'll be glad to answer your questions in the time that we have remaining. [applause] >> excuse me. i notice that there are microphones on each side of the room. if they're available to you, but might want to use those. >> the best of the generals in western theaters as far as i know was forest, and although forest is kind of -- dispatches were kind of a laughing stock, people said, we ran with a --
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told them to get. despite that he seemed to be the best general. did davis ever consider him? >> davis did actually utilize for forrest for raids behind union lines. forrest was a good raider, a good cavalry commander, a good battlefield commander, tactical battlefield commander, but i think most historians would agree that he really didn't have the capacity to be a large army commander. i think that is how davis perceived the situation. i think that's how lee and johnston and others perceived the situation, and so they used him as what he -- for what he was really good at, but i don't think davis ever considered appointing him for, for example to replace bragg. he just didn't have the
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experience for commanding a large army of mixed artillery, infantry and maybe some cavalry. he didn't have the experience and the qualifications to manage the logistics for a large army. soforce was really good at what re did but probably would not have been very good in a larger capacity. >> the gentleman raises the question of seniority, too. he would have had to jump forrest above a lot of people who outranked him. and that's often a sensitive question. not that it can't be done but it's a sensitive issue. there's a microphone. >> thank you. i'm tim johnson from lipscomb university where you'll be speaking the 15th of next month. >> right. >> we look forward to that. i have a question


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