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<<Blaming Lincoln for starting the Civil War is like blaming the Jews for the Holocaust.>>--m

Well, I don't quite see that analogy, no matter what light I shine on it. But you are quite right about the secessionist movement having a big head of steam before Lincoln took office.

But what was portrayed in "Gods and Generals" on this was all about Virginia. As I understand it, Virginia was one of the last to secede. In the opening scene of the movie, Col. Robert E. Lee, U.S. Army, is offered Supreme Command of the Army of the Potomac, then being raised by Lincoln. At that moment, VA had not yet seceded, though the legislature was in session and the issue was clearly up for consideration. Lincoln's messenger to Col. Lee, Blair, tried to persuade Lee that Virginia and the border States would not necessarily secede. But Lee wasn't buying in to their argument. Next scene he is present in the legislative chamber at Richmond to accept command of the A.N.V.

What there is in the dialogue is a few comments about Lincoln "raising an army" against southern agitators as being strong motivation for defending one's hearth and home. I don't think even that dialogue got so far as to suggest that Lincoln literally started the war. It is clear that that horse was already out of the barn. A few Virginians just used the issue of Lincoln's military build-up as additional excuse to join in with the deep-South radicals.

At least that was the way I saw it, the first time through.

/s/ S.T.
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