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tv   Book Discussion on Valiant Ambition  CSPAN  December 30, 2016 12:00am-1:15am EST

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journal, live at 7:00 a.m. eastern on five friday morning. join the discussion. >> this holiday we cannot see spend two's book to become saturday night at ten eastern on afterwards, afterwards, wall street journal editor joann work looks at top leaders in corporate america. at 11, cnn contributors talk about thomas lake's book, unprecedented. the election that changed everything and a look back at the 2016 presidential campaign. campaign. >> sunday afternoon after five, professor blanche cook talks about the final volume to her eleanor roosevelt series. at 10:00 p.m. eastern, the author on the death of the steel industry and its effect on a working-class town seen through the ends of high school football, in his book playing through the whistle. for the complete complete schedule go to
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>> you're watching book tv on c-span2 with top nonfiction books and authors every weekend. book book tv, television for serious readers. [inaudible] [inaudible] [inaudible] >> good evening everyone. >> thank you for being here, my name is kirk named the president of george washington we are delighted to have you here for this moment of the ford book
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talks and i begin by thanking the ford motor company for their enduring partnership. they have done a great deal for us including endowing this book talk series. i am personally pleased to welcome back daniel philbrook who's third time he visited in mount vernon and as many years. were delighted to have them back. highest introduce them because i do that i'm struck by him as a true renaissance man. he has a ba in english from brown university, an ma from american literature reviews the fellow, he was an all-american sailor while i brown university, he, he worked at an editor and ceiling magazine and he wrote and edited several books including -- second wind. he is the author of nick -- it
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won the national book award for nonfiction, and 2010 he published a book it won a new york times best seller and a 2009 book. it was also a consultant custer's last -- so the good news for everyone here this evening is set in a moment he turned his talents to the american revolution. he published in 2013 bunker hill, city of siege and revolution which he spoke about several years ago. it is a new york times bestseller and run the book award for nonfiction. the 2000 distinguish book award on the society of -- and the rights to the book have been
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acquired by warner bros. for film adam adaptation. he has written for vanity fair the new york times book review, the wall street journal, the l.a. times, and the boston globe. he has appeared on the today show, on dateline, on pbs american experience come on c-span and npr which we are delighted to have c-span here to film the lecture. like another great historian, nathaniel phil bourque from pittsburgh credits his ap u.s. history teacher for recognizing his talents and encouraging him to rights. so this is part of the reason we welcome this evening to discuss the latest book which was just released today and copies are available after the election.
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please try me in welcoming our guests. [applause] >> thank you. it is great to be here at mount vernon. this is a special place if you have been researching and writing in a little sidebar that the parroting was spelled with two a's and no see. so that explained why it's a parody. to be at mount vernon after writing this book it begins with washington in new york is a huge armada of british warships and transports arrive. in new york harbor. more than 400 ships, more than 40000 sailors and soldiers, that
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is more people than in philadelphia than the largest urban center in america, it is like the war of the worlds in which this amazing force arrives at your doorstep, washington had been there at the siege of boston which i read about in my earlier book, bunker hill. but this was different. king george had responded with a real will. washington had never let a big army and a big battle before. this was new for him, this would test his talents and it was after finishing bunker hill that i realize that i just have to follow this guy where he'll lead me in the revolution, so fascinated with washington, is, is not a statue, he was in his 40s he had red hair and we think of him as the pragmatists,
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the person we see on the dollar bill, but early on in his military career he is wired to be aggressive in boston time and time again he wanted to attack the british there were than in boston. his counsel would repeatedly say no it's too risky, but he wanted that bolt struck to try to finish the war. he realized america was her the country at all especially in 1775 even with the declaration of independence it was now independent but it was barely being held together. washington was well aware of how tentative his army was. didn't have enough armaments or gunpowder, all of these things. and now in new york is completely different. he is up against it. it would not go well for him in new york. the battle of long island will
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be out general, forced to retreat from the high ground in brooklyn heights across the east river to new york. eventually forced to retreat into the harlem heights. and this gave the british a toehold on the base of the hudson river. much of my book is about set on water. at the hudson river was part of water that spanned the country. if you took the hudson river to the south and a river like expanse of lake champlain weather 300 miles to the north you had a quarter of water that went all the way to canada. we drive around in our multilane highways in the unit often see a
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four position by a river or lake and you would wonder what the strategic importance was. in the 18th-century you cannot transport people, provisions with any kind of speeder regularity unless it was by water. the road system was not there. and so whoever possessed this corridor of water would be in a position to cut off new england from the rest of the state. so is critical that america maintain some control of this are the world be over with a loss of new york, british now had the toehold on this corridor of water was september 15 with the americans evacuated there's one group of soldiers that stood between the british and taking lake champlain to the north. those benedict arnold my
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interest goes way back when it began with my mother my mother was a renegade. for one thing she smoked a pipe which as a teenager he was tough to take in a restaurant when mom abide up when she would light up after dinner. she had no no problem telling someone what she believed even if she she knew they did not want to hear. now with mommy and mommy kind kind of dismiss that in my teenagers, but after finishing bunker hill i realized that i wanted to get at the war of independence that i knew relatively little about. i write these books not because i'm an expert in the field but because i'm curious about the subject, i knew there is a story there that i had not learned in high school even though my ap u.s. history
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teacher was a wonderful woman and really ignited my interest in history. we gripped thinking of the revolution as heroic militiamen banding together to defeat british tyranny. we think of the battles the steppingstones to our inevitable victory. the fact of the matter is, that, that revolution went on for eight years. instead of this relentless course to victory it stagnated even after the french came into it at the victor saratoga. things just bound down. there wasn't the money to pay for the army. congress was suspicious of the military because in every previous revolution in which every public they hoped for end result, the military had ultimately co-opted the civil
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government in either a dictator and per would take over. they were rightly concerned about the military. so the continental congress had real control over washington. we think of him as operating in being the one who is controlling this revolution. in fact, he had had to report to the congress. i hate to say it but a dysfunctional congress is nothing new. washington had to deal with this. one of the things that happened during this eight-year time is that instead of fighting the british, we americans began to fight among ourselves. it was under the patriot versus loyalist to a certain extent but in the hudson river valley to the north of british occupied new york, the long island sound, and the coastal new jersey, it
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evolved into this ugly cat and dog fight, former neighbor going after neighbor. it was something that was horrible to live through. afterwards people really didn't want to remember it in those terms. so i wanted to get at this, but but how to find a way to dramatize and and to find a personality to get it what i felt was the dark side of the revolution that i hadn't appreciated. enter mom with benedict arnold. i grew up thinking to be called the benedict arnold, oh my gosh, that was the worst possibly thing you could be. like many historical historical figures he has become a caricature. he is just the worst thing on earth is for his americans can think of. but the fact of the matter is at the beginning of our revolution he was our best general. and washington really respected
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him for that. washington was wired and had an aggressive temperament by nature. he he would learn to tame it for the good of his country. but in benedict arnold, think he saw a kindred spirit to a certain extent, washington have been ten years younger and not set with the crushing responsibilities of command, he could've been on the battlefield and winning the kinds of victories that benedict arnold was racking up. it's amazing, he learns of lexington and concord, he has been a seagoing merchant men. he has a small fleet of ships that go to the caribbean, up the coast to the st. lawrence river to québec in montreal, he knows all about this water corridor and he says we need to take
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ticonderoga at the southern end of lake champlain. there's canon so that we can use and it's a key to maintaining control of the vital portion of our country. so it turns out others of the same idea in its benedict arnold and ethan allen that storm. after that, washington assigned to while washington is admire in a nine siege in boston, he sends benedict arnold over a crazy overland expedition to try to get to québec. the british had been cut on aware by the outbreak of the revolution per they are very small forces in montréal and québec. we can take those two cities are before reinforcements arrive, we'll have canada and be in a much better position. so montgomery is set up lake
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champlain and it's up to benedict arnold to lead this band up the river in the fall and it's getting very cold. the rivers of virtual torrents, and i followed benedict arnold's trail into the interior main to québec, up up north there's still nothing up there, if there is a street name, it says arnold. and he let his men up there. it's an incredible story on its own. he he is there with daniel morgan, the great rifleman. aaron burr, it's an amazing cat, and, they make it, they get to québec. after that amazing feat to be known as the american hannibal, he was secure, they finally with
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storm québec at the end of the year in a snowstorm, montgomery who had teamed up with him would be killed in the early going, benedict arnold would be badly injured when a bullet ricochet got his left leg and it would not succeed, but it was still an amazing feat. hugh would eventually be reassigned in montréal and be a vital element in leading the retreat from canada back down lake champlain. in chapter two of valiant ambition takes us 360 miles north of new york to lake
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champlain right near the canadian border where it is benedict arnold with the fleet of about 15 vessels, many of them hacked from the trees surrounding the southern end of lake champlain, kelly's, kelly's and gondolas are basically floating platforms he has put the fleet together in record time when general gates in charge of the normal armory of fort thai condit ticonderoga is his boss. he sent to to arnold up there with his fleet. the british now have new york and now the british general is leading this vast armada down lake champlain. they three masted ships. there thousands of soldiers, they have more than 20 gunboats and they are all headed in arnold's direction. it's october. it is so cold they can see snow in the adirondack mountains on one side.
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in the green mountains on the other. they're up there alone, it is only a schooner that goes back and forth 100 miles down lake champlain. it's their only connection. he is up there waiting and he knows it will be a northerly breeze that blows the british down lake champlain. he comes up with a brilliant plan. i did not know benedict arnold was a mariner. this was a wonderful surprise. what made it more special, guess, guess where i learned how where to sail? lake champlain. little did i know that i was sailing on the other side of the lake on the east, the west side a few miles of what is below new york is the island.
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it contains a little bay inside. arnold knew that if he would take his fleet and hide it inside the bay and wait for the british to sail past and then reveal himself, basically wait-and-see here we are. the british would have to sail against the wind to attack his small fleet. now at three masted british ship with 18 can is an awesome force. but it cannot sail against the wind. it's really the maritime equivalent of taking the high ground. it would work beautifully. the british with this huge armada with sail down. arnold would wave to them they would turn around saying we've got them. we are between him and his escape route. will just drawing what was called the mosquito fleet.
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what would've fold is a tremendous c battle. arnold had lined up his 15 vessels across the entrance to the bay. i was up up there with my wife in a pontoon boat circling and working it all up. at the smithsonian museum of american history they have one of the vessels, the the philadelphia those eventually sunk during the battle. it is amazing. the fleet was piled up and so is vessels were lined up, arnold was in the center of his line. and they waited. sure enough, even the schooners had a hard time making it up. only the gunboats could get close enough. they would line up firing
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cannons back and forth. even took a shot and nearly took amount and it was eight hours the smithsonian would get sunk and eventually night with come and arnold had fought them to a job. he had his fleet was a mess. many men had died, but it was a miracle, he miracle, he had done it. but the british were confident they had them trapped in the small bay. so they created their own line below arnold so there's no way for him to escape they're going to get him in the morning. arnold has a council with his officers and one of his officer
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says look, the only way were going to get out of this as if we sailed to the north and go around the top of the bay. it's the safest thing to do. now arnold headed swashbuckling christmas to him that was both inspiring and infuriating if you are an officer. and he said no, were going to go through their fleet. there is enough of a gap on the shore side of their line that if we go one vessel after another we will get through. so okay let's go for it. so vessel after vessel would go by with the light to mr. that could only be seen from behind. they would roll roll with minimum sail up. and every vessel got out. they awoke the next morning there was fog on the lake, took a while to figure up there was no american fleet.
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according to one account he ordered them let's go after them without telling everyone else he was leaving and then had to come back. by this time, the americans were many miles down the lake and the wind had switched to the south so they were sailing against the wind. it became about the and the british were passing them. arnold is is desperately trying to get his fleet back to fort ticonderoga with the wind comes out of the north. having sail done lake champlain i've experienced this. the wind is not always reliable a winter line comes down and the british are coming after them. so that great big british ship in two schooners were leading
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the way. arnold basically says to sleep, keep on going, although he tried to make one more stand at a place called split what rock. his fleet evaporated around him. so he decided to make a stand so the rest of the vessels could escape. so there is arnold, surrounded by three british vessels fighting for hours, eventually their beginning to sink. arnold realizes that this is it. he notices the wind has changed to the east. he can row, they can't do that so well so they go for sure, make it to shore, pulled their vessels, he's surrounded by few gondolas. they pull the vessels up he orders his men up into the high ground and he refuses to lower his flake.
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but he orders them to blow up the ships because there is gunpowder in there. the british are approaching, they have lit the fuse and he notices that one of his injured officers have been left inadvertently on the deck of his vessel. even though he had insisted everybody get up off. it blows blows up into arnold it was crushing. it's interesting, the only account we have had was from a british surgeon who saw body fly in the air. he claimed that he uses to say how insensitive arnold was. that years later an account would be found written by a vermonter who is a young boy lived in a house on that cold. late in life when he was looking
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for a pension he gave an account of what he saw. he described how how arnold had done everything he could to get off. when he found out that one of his men had been killed he threatened to run through the officer who had been responsible for getting them off. they didn't leave until they buried the soldier and then they escaped down the lake to fort ticonderoga. they came in it for you and as horatio gates would write to general schuyler who is the head of the northern, no one has had more escapes than arnold. so here we are, my book begins with washington at its lowest stage. here's washington, the man who is destined to be the one person who can hold this country together.
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and he is at his lowest. here is arnold destined to become the man who attends to to tear the country apart and he is a true hero. you could argue that through this action, and after all of this the british was like it was hit by a tornado. they make their way down to fort ticonderoga they look at the calendar and realize it's getting late and they decide we are not going to do this year will wait till next year. that set up a year later was the battle of saratoga. that's where the book begins. i follow them through this. the next we see washington at trenton and princeton which was washington's great comeback of all time. it's an amazing feat. but there is another side to it. that is the side, this book is about loyalty, betrayal and
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self-interest. these are the issues people were wrestling with. how much does your country ou and how much do you own your country? washington, going into the crossing of the delaware that would be a magnificent turnaround. it wasn't wasn't looking good. he lost three quarters of his army, this was a desperate gamble. pose amazing was how many of his officers he could not depend on. horatio gates comes down, washington expects gates to help them out. he has helped him out by bringing down 500 seasoned soldiers but gates claims he is too ill cannot help but he needs to go to philadelphia. by this time the british was
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knocking on the door and the continental congress has fled to baltimore. somehow gates decides he is ill but it does not preclude writing all the way to baltimore. it's clear to washington that if this expedition into new jersey doesn't go well horatio gates will be perfectly poised to be the next one in line. even before this in november, his general, joseph reed who has been at his side throughout the battle of long island, was there for part of the siege of boston, he has begun to lose confidence in him. washington learns is when he opens a letter addressed to read by charles lee. basically the second highest command ranking officer in the
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army. a brit who is now the american side by the correspondence washington can see that joseph reed has reached out to charles lee that if this does not go well what you should do is go south and reform a new army. his talking at the slowest moment to someone else and they're talking about washington's inability to make up his mind. washington reads a letter what i think is for me the first indication of his incredible political skills because he was okay on the battlefield but it was as a politician where his aggression and cold ruthlessness could really come to the four. reed was sealed the letter and sent it to read saying this was
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addressed to and when you're not here i open all correspondence assuming it's for all of us. i realize this this is of different nature. and that is all he says. he leads him twisting in the icy emptiness of his withheld the wrath. reed knows the man is angered. and that's the thing about washington. he could control his passions but that does not mean he was not passionate. as the young man his anger was a problem. he famously copied more than 100 rules of civility as an attempt to contain himself. as jefferson would write for the most part he maintained over those passions. but they were still there. i
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think that's why washington was able to hang in there for so long. so washington doesn't confront him directly. reed becomes despondent. instead of being a team player while washington's coming up with this plan there several accounts of read not even at headquarters, he's talking to people about how the cause is pretty much lost. according to one account his poised to go to the other side if he should hear that trenton did not go well. all of this is happening around washington. charles lee, the second highest ranking american officer would be captured about this time by the british, not a bad thing from washington's point of view. so the rear, washington pulls it off.
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you think congress would be a static, he's turned it around but instead he sees people like john adams particularly the congressman from new england who are the real radicals the push for the revolution and are very fearful of the military potentially co-opting this revolution. he talks in congress about the dangers of one man taking on status. so they're concerned about washington. one of the things they decide to do, you would think that washington is military commander would be able to choose his major generals, not so. remember this is the republic. in washington understood this and would respected throughout
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the revolution even though it was driving him crazy. this is incredible patience he had. so congress, that winter decides that each state should have two major generals. connecticut were benedict arnold this from already has two so this means that five officers ranking below arnold are elevated past him to major general walt arnold, the highest ranking for you dear general who has just it achieved a miracle on lake champlain is overlooked for promotion. people would say that arnold was thin-skinned, but this is outrageous. it horrified washington. the letter he would write initially he says i've heard this is the situation, can't
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believe it's true but believe me if it is i will do everything for you that i can. he would try, but this began arnold's real problems with the continental congress. he had a point, and others for example john stark from new hampshire the same thing happened and he quit. he quit and went to new hampshire. he would raise his own state army. arnold could have done that but he hung in. in typical arnold fashion he is in new haven kind of upset over all of this. he is now when you were at 36, he spent a 16-year-old girl that he has fallen in love with. he has written her most purple letter you have ever read and she is turned him down flat. so it's not looking good and he
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hears that the governor william tyrone british occupied new york is leading the raid on danbury connecticut with americans have a lot of military stores. it's very much like the raid on concord that strength revolution. he sails up to long island where westport is today, they would offload, march inland, burned dan barry burned it to the ground they destroyed a huge amount of stores. arnold hears about it gets on his horse by the time the british are leaving danbury here 500 militiamen in ridgefield, connecticut. they know the british have to go through. he has created a cliff on one side, farmhouse on the other, they've created this barricade,
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there's not many of them, there's 2000 british and they're there. so the british come at them, arnold is shouting at his men to hold their ground, for going to retreat were going to do this in an organized fashion. he's riding his horse up and down the line is the british are approaching. the. the british have no appetite for attacking head on have flank them and are firing from the sides and behind. the militiamen flee, arnold is yelling at them, his horse gets hit by nine musket balls. finally the horses killed. it collapses on top of arnold who is pin to the ground as the british are approaching and leading the way is a noted loyalist and he says to arnold, you are a prisoner. arnold takes the pistols out of
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the holsters of his saddle shoots and he says not yet, is able to extricate himself from the stirrups and vanishes into a nearby swamp. that is arnold. the next day he would do it again, another horse would get shot out from under him. when word reached congress that arnold had done this they began to think, maybe we should have made arnold the major general. they would do that but they would not restore his seniority. that meant that rankled him. they did however give him a new horse. which shows you that politicians can sometimes miss the mark. arnold fought brilliantly. it would come to a crescendo with saratoga where horatio
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gates had not been washington's friend prior now views arnold who, they were friends on my champlain in the battle of saratoga is a misnomer. after the first it's arnold's men who fight the british to a draw and inflict huge casualties on the general who has come down the water quarter and arnold gets dismissed from the army. he sticks it it out, the next battle he has no standing in the army, he's out there and according to some accounts he was a hellion and that leads a very dangerous charge towards the end of the battle through two lines of battle through the enemies, he yells at those in
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there to surrender, one fires and hits him in the same lake that had been injured in québec, the horses killed in classes on top of them and henry dearborn is that aside and he says are you hurt? and he says i've been shot in the same leg, i wish it had gone through my heart. and so that is the turning point. i don't have time to go into detail about that, you're going to have to read the book. but that begins arnold's dissent. he would end up in philadelphia as a military governor, this is a horrible injury, and for arnold was an athlete this just robbed him. he would end end up as military governor and get into trouble with joseph reed who would now be the head of the state legislature who would
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pursue him in a witch hunt. anna would marry peggy, who is 18 and half his age while the british had briefly comprise philadelphia philadelphia she got to know some british officers, one of whom is major john andre who became head of the british by network and the rest of the history when arnold decided it was time for him to turn over west point to the british. he would not be successful but he would escape to new york, eventually joined by peggy and the british accepted him but he was a traitor. traders on either side are tainted. the irony of the story and i like to finish by reading a
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paragraph or two for my epilogue. the irony of this is that arnold in the first years of the war had done more than any other american for the american class. but it would be as a traitor where you could argue that he served his former country in the most important fashion. this was a galvanizing moment. americans were forced to realize 1780, by this time congress hardly had a pulse. the continental army was barely alive. the french alliance which arnold made possible had done nothing to win the war. it was all falling to pieces. the treason of arnold was a true wake-up call to the american people that this war was theirs to lose. so i'll finish with this from
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the epilogue. the united states have been created through an act of disloyalty. no matter how eloquently the declaration of independence had attempted to justify the american rebellion the guilt hovered over the circumstances of the founding. arnold change that. by threatening to destroy the newly created part public through some betrayal. he gave this nation of traders the greatest of gifts, the american people had come to revere george washington but a hero alone is not sufficient to bring them together. they had the despise and benedict arnold. they knew what they're fighting for for and against. the story of america's genesis could move beyond and start to focus on the process by which 13 former colonies could become a
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nation. as arnold had demonstrated, the real enemy was not great britain , but those americans who thought to undercut their fellow citizens commitment to one another. whether whether is reid's willingness to promote his state's interest were arnold's decision to sell his loyalty to the highest bidder. the greatest danger to america's future came from self-serving opportunism, masquerading as patriotism. at this fragile stage in the country's roman away had to be found to strengthen rather than destroy the existing framework or government. continental congress was far from perfect. but offered to start to one day what could be a great nation. arnold had alerted the american people by how close they came to be trained the american revolution by putting their own interest ahead of the newborn countries. benedict arnold name was
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becoming the name of the most hateful crimes. treason against the people of the united states. [applause] >> thank you. there is is time for some questions and i will try to answer. you probably haven't had time to read the book yet. >> please wait for the microphone. >> during your research, to what extent did you rely on manuscripts and original records and where did you find most of these? >> when it comes to the story their documents everywhere.
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for me the cornerstone of this was the henry clinton papers. he was the general who was commander of the british army at the time of arnold's treason. his correspondence is that the library on the campus of the university of michigan. this came into their possession in the 19 thirties. it has the correspondence correspondence between arnold and major john andre. up until those papers coming to light that wisdom was that peggy shippen was non- witting victim of her husband's treason. that she was as hamilton thought because he was at her bedside
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after arnold had left. she went into a hysterical swoon seems to have been fairly well staged for her husband's benefit. he thought she was innocent as the land. but as the correspondence proved that was hardly the case. she was actively involved in was actually when arnold had to move from philadelphia in the months prior to the treason she was the conduit for this. so those papers were important. it's amazing when you can holding her hand a coded letter from benedict arnold to the british a medicine my book to you can see the british had translated it. these kinds of things are important. another source that was hugely
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important and now has been published several times in many ways my story is a shakespearean tragedy. though i focus on washington and arnold, this book has a greek course and that is a wonderful character named joseph -- he was 16 when he joined the war of independence from connecticut. late in life by that time he had moved to me. his account must be based on notebooks that he kept. he was a bright guy and wonderfully iconic. he had no respect for his commanding officers and with good reason as it turned out. it's a revelation as to what the common soldier in the continental army had to deal
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with. they never never had enough food, their clothing was minimal. it's all there. what is great about joseph, he is a lot like for scott. when something was happening of historic importance, he was there. it's incredible. there he is, he he had known arnold before the revolution. back then there is a smaller population and he claimed he never liked him. but there he is, on the banks of the hudson and joseph is days before arnold's treason and he sees arnold on a horse sizing at various roads and things. so those sources were very important. >> i'm curious about what first,
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thank you so much i can't wait to read your book. as a sealer yourself can you talk about the deficit the u.s. really was this were as a result of the lack of boats or navy, the resources and time to build anything. i'm a little bit curious about that. >> i sneak in maritime stuff into all my books. even the last stand about the battle of little big horn. [laughter] it begins on a riverboat. this book, particularly for me it was so much fun. the battle of valcourt island was important. the hudson river, arnold is working his way up and down the river on the barge and then when it comes to philadelphia it's on the delaware river.
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water is absolutely important there and joseph, that long-suffering continental soldier -- the british take philadelphia but they can get their ships or because they have to get by a series of forts that americans have built. one one is appropriately the named mud island. it's a pile of mud of two rivers and they had sort of a fort with him is like world i, french warfare where they're getting pounded. if they can hang out for another week the british will be forced to evacuate philadelphia because they would have the provisions. eventually they succumb and once again water was everything.
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in the british navy, they controlled the coast. that is why that internal waterway was so important. when it came to the bottle of long island, washington washington never had a chance. the british had command of the water, they can move their armies with ultimate speed on their ships. there's really nothing you could do fighting a force check control of the waterways. for me it was part of my research process was to go to these places. i love research trips. nothing i enjoy more. one of the things i was able to get someone who would take me on the circumnavigation of manhattan and staten island
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which was so important. i've lived in manhattan for three years for my two grown-up children are in brooklyn, but it wasn't until i was on the water and going to the snacks and crannies and realizing what it was. the harlem river is fascinating. it's up there as you approach the hudson it's pretty wild, the trees and things like that it's hard to believe there is a city to the south, so water was a big part of this. and i think that speaks to a lot of the genius of george washington. he was a plantation owner but one of the things is wiser called mount vernon? because his brother who served in the british navy so review admiral vernon who he was with
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early in the century that he named mount vernon for british -- so go put that in your pipe and smoke it. sabina saylor a tendency maritime everywhere. the fact of the matter is, in the 18th century and much of the 19th century water would determine the strategic what was strategically important in this country. >> thank you very much. you had mentioned that washington saw a certain part of himself in arnold as a younger soldier. wonder if you, on washington's attitude after the trader incident in those orders that if arnold was captured as part of
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the virginia campaign that he be executed. >> it quickly became very personal for george washington. in washington is such a rock, yet there is that personal fire. no wonder he had to have dentures. he was breaking hickory nuts with his teeth. this is a man whom tensions he was operating under it managing to control were amazing. when arnold's treason is revealed to him this is something he cannot help but take personally. this is a man whose career he respected and he along with everybody else had no clue this was coming. washington is that arnold's headquarters at a house about 1 mile below west point when he learns of this. he has lafayette with them, henry noxon hamilton. he turns to lafayette and says
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simply, whom can we trust now? can you imagine. everyone around him is going crazy. as knox would write the thing you green, i cannot get arnold over my head. this really messed with their sense of who they were. if this could happen this is really fundamentally scary stuff. washington would, but this time the french general had arrived in prior to washington's learning of this he had met with the french in hartford. their first meeting. it was fundamentally important how the french were here for the first time.
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he had to put the best face on. he writes an incredible letter to his french counterpart where there is none of that passion. he says it's actually amazing that we have gone this far in the struggle and this is not yet happen. things like this are what happened. in a revolution. that said, he turned his attention to getting benedict arnold while arnold was in new york he got his calvary officer harry lee to find an officer that could infiltrate the british, poses a deserter and get arnold and they had to take him alive. they're going to see that he received justice. so this soldier's job just within months of all this was to
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find arnold and he did exactly that, he had it all planned. he knew that arnold every night around midnight would walk around his property basically go to the outhouse and come back. and so hughes waiting for him and even pushed a piece of the gate open and he was going to grab him and take him to a boat waiting on the shore unroll across the hudson where he would get justice. it was it was on that very day that henry clinton corners arnold to head south. and to go after two virginia. and it didn't happen. and there i won't go into detail but arnold once again would fight brilliantly. he would burn richmond, jefferson would be forced to
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flee and washington sends none other than lafayette down to get in. i won't go into because i'm going to be talking about that in my next book. [laughter] [applause] . .
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how had the chance at the battle of long island had positive feelings about the american qualities. the massachusetts legislature voted money for the memorial and the westminster abbey. their hope wasn't to destroy washington's army but to reach
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the point americans would be forced to negotiate. trenton messed with that whole scheme for peace and cornwall is down. on either side of the river that flows they have soldiers across this narrow bridge and they are in a very tight spot because there is nowhere for them to hide. what does washington do and this
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is where joseph reed just a month earlier helped him out because he had taken some philadelphians on horseback to princeton earlier and figured out the lay of the land and with some other input they decided to sneak out at night that would add to washington's and have the effect of clearing the british out of that portion of new jersey. >> could you go over how benedict arnold was exposed to?
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subpoena gets wonderful cloak and dagger kind of stuff. they are not even confident we are corresponding with and we need to have a face-to-face before they go through. they have the british admiral and an influx of transports to go up to go after west point.
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its fire on too much sugar in through a variety of things now he had to find a way back and go with a young lawyer that would accompany him so they were on the ferry to the eastern shore of long island and make their way down the westchester. this was known as the natural ground where neither american or british side held sway.
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the americans were called scanners and at the british thes were called cowboys. it was just a wasteland and through this, he would make his way to new york and he is almost there when the three soldiers stepped out of the shadows and one has a code and they assume they are british. he is really happy to see them and they said it turns out he's an american and these are the militia men using this jacket as a disguise and that is the unraveling of the plot.
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it would take several days for all of this to get to washington and arnold for a variety of reasons. thank you very much. [applause] and look on the front page. on the left side are all the hearings in the presidential events of the day and then right
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underneath that on the left-hand side is the link that says recent events and they appear in the order they were on the network. you can search for a person's name. they have pages that contain all their video and on that page is a search box lets say you want sheila jackson lee and then you put in a word they talked about, climate change. >> members will receive the signatures and statements of those demanding this body supports the clean power plants. >> they talked about iraq. put in those words and it will get you to that particular small pieces like paragraphs. >> th
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>> the members of the battalion regiment second combat team of the first calvary division these american soldiers were volunteers to protect the united states. >> across the top we had all the video clips you can find for other people to look for. >> is another tab that says mentions. what a bizarre decision by the president of mexico to invite donald trump down there. on the far left side there are breakdowns much like the would finyou wouldfind on any shockinu could say i want to see a particular person's name or
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senate committee. on the left side it's valuable for narrowing down. >> here with the political scientist defenseless under the night the roosevelt years. what was the bold and the creation of the office of the civilian defense quite >> she was interested in how democracy was going to defend itself against an existential threat. she worked for social defense. so as the new deal was out, she and other progressives felt she launched a campaign to mobilize
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the country but also to argue democracy has to be strengthened at home. the office was set up by franklin roosevelt who was instrumental in the idea of the volunteer participation that every american had a role to play and they should make life more living in democracy. was there much concern in the full-time basis? spinnaker prior to world war ii, most progress that' became pacis and followed the post-world war i plot. there was a sense of demobilization and of course the
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neutrality act. the country was deeply isolationist so by the mid-1930s, the civil war, the bombing and attacks on ethiopia, the rise of hitler, the forces overseas slowly began to creep into the american political consciousness and we are seeing radio drama is and there were a series of the use and the articles about the super bombers that could fly across the atlantic to the media starts covering the war overseas and
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it's ratcheted up in dramatic ways the country is struggling to figure out a response. >> do you think homeland security which is now the office of civilian defense was evolved into has been successful at making america feel safe or has had the opposite effect over the years? >> i think it's been both. there've been times when the department of homeland security has probably made some americans feel more secure like the government has been taking proactive steps. remember right after 9/11 there was a great deal of fear tha but was even more so after 9/11. the department created enough to give people the sense that there was a reaction and response from
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the government as dysfunctional as it may seem today at the same time look at hurricane katrina. wwe have spent billions of dollars and merged all these agencies together to protect the country into the department of homeland security is incapable of saving lives on u.s. soil and hundreds of thousands of people died in hurricane katrina and so does security agents in airports is a lot of unhappiness. if there was a department of homelandepartment ofhomeland sef americans be clamoring for something like


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