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Read [Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution] Æ Nathaniel Philbrick

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Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution

Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution review ¾ 103 read & download Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution Eeds in postponing the British naval advance down Lake Champlain that might have ended the war Four years later as the book ends Washington has vanuished his demons and Arnold has fled to the enemy after a foiled attempt to surrender the American fortress at West Point to the British After four years of war America is forced to realize that the real threat to its liberties might not come from without but from within Valiant Ambition is a complex controversial and dramatic portrait of a people in crisis and the war that. We follow George Washington and Benedict Arnold from the 1776 Battle of New York through 1780 when Arnold deserts to the British Philbrick portrays Washington as an inspirational leader for his troops Steadfast and patient he was not brilliant but learned from his mistakes Arnold was very different He spoke crudely He was rough not smooth While Washington had a penchant for aggressive action he was analytical and regularly consulted with others Arnold was blindly headstrong But Arnold also inspired his men and he was creatively clever Less thoughtful than Washington he was decisive never second guessing his decisions as Washington did Both men started out driven to defeat the British Washington s measured style would see him through to the end Arnold s preoccupation with personal glory and wealth would take precedence over his commitment to his countryPhilbrick eschews the romanticized history of the Revolution giving us the gritty reality of political and military leaders who put their own interests first Washington and a few others were profound exceptions He fills us in on the constant backbiting the jockeying for position among the officers of both the Revolutionary and the British armies Washington was particularly handicapped He could not pick his own officers These were selected by the Continental Congress Arnold saw the Congress promote men ahead of him despite his widely recognized heroics in the battles for Lake Champlain and Fort Ticonderoga The temperamental Arnold threatened to uit Washington backed Arnold and they were mutually respectful but the constant infighting would wear on Arnold Add on to that the death of a wife he loved the decline of his property and fortune while he was away fighting and then when he found a new love he was rejected Arnold became increasingly volatile Washington met with the same backstabbing including efforts to replace him after his defeat in New York But Washington s resoluteness was remarkable Whatever he felt from his humiliating battle defeats and criticism by Congress and other officers he carried on as though it didn t matter Both Arnold and Washington were challenged by fellow general Horatio Gates Arnold directly and Washington behind his back At the battle of Saratoga in 1777 Gates was Arnold s superior He sidelined Arnold who he saw as an impudent glory seeker who would steal the credit Gates felt he deserved Arnold took command of some troops anyway and in leading the charge on some Hessians took a bullet in the leg shattering his femur Arnold would come away with his body crippled but significantly his spirit bitter about his treatment by Gates He believed his personal sacrifices and service were not properly appreciated After the battle Gates began a surreptitious campaign with the Continental Congress to have himself appointed Washington s replacement At the time Washington was retreating before the British who took Philadelphia Washington belatedly learned of Gates dirty work but his above the fray response was successful Washington did not just have to fight just the British He had to fight double dealing officers in his own army At the same time he had to fight for supplies for his starving troops at Valley Forge in 1778 and later at an even worse winter in Morristown in 1780 Somehow Washington never lost his cool He learned to maintain a long term perspectiveIn 1778 after the British left Philadelphia Washington appointed Arnold military governor of Philadelphia Arnold immediately went about building up his wealth using his position to secure secret trade deals Arnold felt the country owed him the money believing his service had cost him his fortune He also fell in love with the beautiful Peggy Shippen who along with her wealthy father had loyalist leanings Peggy herself had enjoyed the British occupation making important friends in the British army such as Captain John Andre Taking out loans and deceiving the Shippens about his wealth Arnold married Peggy Arnold as usual ran afoul of a very important person Joseph Reed President of Pennsylvania s Supreme Executive Council Reed suspicious of Arnold s dealings brought charges against Arnold who eventually faced court martial With this apparent final straw soon after their marriage in 1779 Arnold and Peggy decided to make their fortune by becoming traitors Peggy had the connection through Andre who was now in charge of British intelligence operationsArnold demanded 10000 British pounds a huge sum He knew he needed something significant to offer in return In 1780 after surviving his court martial with a reprimand Arnold found the perfect opportunity He convinced Washington who was totally unsuspecting to give him command of the fortifications at West Point These kept the British bottled up in New York preventing them from splitting the United States in two along the Hudson It was the American s largest and most important fortress Arnold planned to earn his money surrendering West Point along with its troops to the British Peggy urged him to reach out to Andre Arnold arranged a secret meeting with a British counterpart who turned out to be Andre himself They spent a day going over detailed plans for a British attack and Arnold s surrender Arnold suggested attack routes He would disperse his troops and make the fortress vulnerable But things went awry Andre had to take an unplanned route back to British lines and at the last minute he was captured the plans discovered Arnold found out before Washington who was nearby and with the plot foiled he made his escape to the British side Andre was executed Arnold became a British officer and Peggy joined him in New YorkThe nation was shocked by Arnold His villainy united the country and renewed its commitment to win the war Washington whose troops had starved in the winters of 1778 and 1780 was given resources Philbrick notes As Arnold had demonstrated the real enemy was not Great Britain but those Americans who sought to undercut their fellow citizens commitment to one another As for Arnold Philbrick elaborates For Arnoldrules were made to be brokenThis did not make Arnold unusualWhat made Arnold uniue was the godlike inviolability he attached to his actionsArnold was in the end the leading personage in the drama that was his lifeArnold did whatever Arnold wanted Sadly I could not read this description without thinking of today s American president

read & download Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution

Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution review ¾ 103 read & download Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution From the New York Times bestselling author of In The Heart of the Sea comes a surprising account of the middle years of the American Revolution and the tragic relationship between George Washington and Benedict Arnold   In September 1776 the vulnerable Continental Army under an unsure George Washington who had never commanded a large force in battle evacuates New York after a devastating defeat by the British Army Three weeks later near the Canadian border one of his favorite generals Benedict Arnold miraculously succ. I am at the point where I know that everything Philbrick produces makes for a stellar read His works also make a good antidote to my lament from the Everly Brothers song I don t know much about history That is especially true about colonial American history With the help of a couple of McCullough books 1776 and John Adams and two great books by Philbrick I have gotten a fair foundation With his Mayflower I got a fulsome story about Plymouth Colony and a remarkable 100 years of relative peace with the Indians ending with the carnage of King Philip s War With his Bunker Hill we skip forward to the precursors of the American Revolution and its first year with Boston and New England the focus of events That account ended with the English forces retiring from Boston to Nova Scotia Valiant Ambition picks up with the return of General Howe and his brother Admiral Howe to the war and their campaign to take New York The early revolution leading from the battles of Lexington Concord and Bunker Hill to the Declaration of Independence gets most of the limelight for the story of the War for Independence The easy impressions I used to get from these events was that of a smooth path to unification among the Colonies and of the inevitability of success Time and again in four long years of war that followed Philbrick makes it clear how the outcome of the conflict was far from certain and how much the common mythologies about it are inaccurate The first lines of his preface grabs our attention with these points We all know the story how a defiant and undisciplined collection of citizen soldiers banded together to defeat the mightiest army on earth But as those who lived through the nearly decade long saga of American Revolution were well aware that was not how it actually happened The real Revolution was so troubling and strange that once the struggle was over a generation did its best to remove all traces of the truth No one wanted to remember how after boldly declaring their independence they had so uickly lost their way how patriotic zeal had lapsed into cynicism and self interest and how just when all seemed lost a traitor had saved them from themselvesIt s a strange kind of war to consider The actual number of combatants in the war was relatively small and the territory as stake was huge The Brits could put only limited forces in play given their far flung empire never than a few tens of thousands including German mercenary troops known as Hessians But they were relatively better trained and were armed with significant artillery and real warships The colonies had poorly armed and trained volunteer militia which little capacity to act as a unified and coordinated force A large fraction of the population still loyal to the British monarchy and perhaps a majority were not fully committed to the sacrifices reuired by all out war Philbrick captures well the tenuous fate of the nascent republic with a close focus on the character and actions of its military leader Washington and one of his star generals Benedict Arnold whose defection to the Brits led to his name becoming synonymous with treachery and betrayalRepresentatives from the colonies met periodically as the Continental Congress and hired the Virginia planter George Washington as commander based on his experience serving the British in the French and Indian War But there was no national government structure to raise taxes to support a professional army Each member state of the emerging federation contributed troops on short term contracts All decisions of selection of officers for the Continental Army and its strategies were made by a civilian committee of the Congress a cumbersome political process that made it extremely challenging for Washington to effectively wage war On several occasions he worked unsuccessfully to promote Arnold who time and again showed great initiative starting with his success in 1775 in bringing critical artillery to the Boston conflict overland through northern New England from Fort Ticonderoga Through Philbrick s gifted exposition Washington s dedication to the cause is contrasted with the self serving ambitions of Arnold which paradoxically contributed both to his effectiveness and to his becoming a turncoatMy ignorance of these military campaigns was matched by low interest as it seemed it was all an inevitable footnote to the kickoff of the war in Boston But there were many turning points An early one when Howe had Washington trapped on Manhattan Island reveals an outcome based largely on Howe s restraint He truly believed that a negotiated settlement could be achieved by a demonstration of England s superior force and capacity to withhold from brutal crushing of rebel forces In a sense Howe was prescient to project that the rebellion could not be defeated by simple force of arms A blockade and occupation of key cities was a fair strategy to wear down the American will to total independence The vast rural hinterlands of the colonies was impossible to conuer in the conventional sense Once Howe had taken New York City he was stuck with defending it leaving little flexibility except for brief forays to counter rebel actions in nearby New Jersey Connecticut and Rhode Island These skirmishes gave Washington growing skills in waging a mobile semi guerilla war in contrast to his initial temptations to gamble on larger battles that would be definitive Howe s concentration on working with his admiral brother to take the capital of the rebellion Philadelphia led to his failure to adeuately support the key British strategy of dominating the Hudson River valley Attaining that objective would have effectively divided the colonies by linkage with British strongholds in uebec accessible to the St Lawrence seaway General Burgoyne worked his way down from Lake Champlain in Vermont toward Albany at the headwaters of the Hudson counting on Howe to work his way up from New York City Hudson River Valley and proximity to Lake Champlain and waterway to the St LawrenceEarly in this campaign Arnold s willingness to take risks showed up in his creative almost foolhardy naval engagements against the Brits on Lake Champlain Battle of Valcour Island This effort and his capacity for subterfuge in defending a small fort further south contributed a lot to slowing Burgoyne s progress They were the most exciting and fun to read about for me so I refrain from any details I guess the principle of spoilers really does apply to historical narratives so I also withhold describing what great sedition it was Arnold was able to make a positive contribution to the defeat of the Brits in the fall of 1777 at the Battle of Saratoga near Albany but a severe injury to his leg in the fighting slowed down his capacity for military field action for a long time In retrospect historians call this battle a turning point though three years of struggle had to play out Arnold recovered enough to take up a position as military governor of beleaguered Philadelphia and to marry to an aristocratic bride His usual pattern of living well beyond his means led to money troubles and he succumbed to corrupt money making schemes similar to ones that got him into trouble in the past Somewhere along the line it became just a small moral step for him to consider betraying the Americans to the Brits for money and position Getting himself appointed commander of the West Port fort and facilities on the upper Hudson River in 1780 put his in a good position to try something worth big rewards from the Brits In the exciting events you can read about here Arnold s plot was foiled and he made an escape to the British side This book ends pretty abruptly without covering his subseuent career and fate Nor do we get filled in Washington leading the war to its conclusion It feels like Philbrick was holding back for another book in his progression He does however weigh how the moral dimensions of Arnold as a traitor have been treated over time In 1780 he suspects the attempted sabotage of the new republic s mission energized the choice of many fence sitters to commit to the struggle for independence However I don t uite see how that justified the tantalizing phrase I uoted from the preface about how a traitor had saved them from themselves Toward the end of this account Philbrick made me aware of the contrast between the level of conflict between Loyalist and rebel populations in the North and the near civil war between partisan factions in the South Though the book focused on military campaigns Philbrick covers enough of social and political history of the times to justify this vivid picture outlined in the preface But the middle of the country was also torn apart by internal conflict much of it fought along the periphery of British occupied New York Here in this war ravaged Neutral Ground where neither side held sway neighbor preyed on neighbor in a swirling cat and dogfight that transformed large swaths of the Hudson River Valley Long Island and New Jersey into lawless wastelandsPhilbrick helped me relinuishing my simplistic semi romantic conceptions of the Revolutionary War Yet he doesn t try to suppress my American s natural sense of noble cause and pride in the accomplishments of the rebels in founding an independent nation Even so I still have the nagging sense that the colonial oppression wasn t that substantial and that the Canadians and Australians emerged as free nations without having to go through a warThis book was provided by the publisher for review through the Netgalley program

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Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution review ¾ 103 read & download Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution Gave birth to a nation The focus is on loyalty and personal integrity evoking a Shakespearean tragedy that unfolds in the key relationship of Washington and Arnold who is an impulsive but sympathetic hero whose misfortunes at the hands of self serving politicians fatally destroy his faith in the legitimacy of the rebellion As a country wary of tyrants suddenly must figure out how it should be led Washington’s unmatched ability to rise above the petty politics of his time enables him to win the war that really matter. I expected this book to be about the defection of Benedict Arnold to the British than a history of the American Revolution But in order to understand why Arnold did what he did you need to know some of his reasoning why Hence the history lesson This is the fourth book by Nathaniel Philbrick that I have read and he is always very thorough in the information he relates to the reader I learned many new facts about the revolutionary times and Arnold in particular Especially the events of Arnold s proposed treasonous acts and how close the Americans came on occasions than one to losing the War for Independence This book was very well researched and written I was not disappointed


10 thoughts on “Read [Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution] Æ Nathaniel Philbrick

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    Nathaniel Philbrick ↠ 3 free download characters Ü eBook or Kindle ePUB ↠ Nathaniel Philbrick Read [Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution] Æ Nathaniel Philbrick ”How can we draw the line and say at what precise point treachery beginswhen the treachery is in progress of e

  2. says: read & download Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution characters Ü eBook or Kindle ePUB ↠ Nathaniel Philbrick Nathaniel Philbrick ↠ 3 free download

    Read [Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution] Æ Nathaniel Philbrick Nathaniel Philbrick ↠ 3 free download “The United States had been created through an act of disloyalty No matter how elouently the Declaration of Independence had attempted to justify the American rebellion a residual guilt hovered over the circumstances of the country’s founding Arnold changed all that By threatening to destroy the newly created republic through

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    Read [Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution] Æ Nathaniel Philbrick I am at the point where I know that everything Philbrick produces makes for a stellar read His works also make a good anti

  4. says: Read [Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution] Æ Nathaniel Philbrick

    characters Ü eBook or Kindle ePUB ↠ Nathaniel Philbrick Nathaniel Philbrick ↠ 3 free download read & download Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution As he was valiantI honor himBut as he was ambitiousI slew him William Shakespeare Julius Caesar “The real Revolution was s

  5. says: Read [Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution] Æ Nathaniel Philbrick

    Read [Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution] Æ Nathaniel Philbrick We follow George Washington and Benedict Arnold from the 1776 Battle of New York through 1780 when Arnold deserts to the British Philbrick portrays Washington as an inspirational leader for his troops Steadfast and patient he was not brilliant but learned from his mistakes Arnold was very different He spoke crudely He was rough not smooth While Washington had a penchant for aggressive action he was analytical and regularly consulted with ot

  6. says: read & download Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution Read [Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution] Æ Nathaniel Philbrick

    read & download Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution Read [Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution] Æ Nathaniel Philbrick Profound naval historian Nathaniel Philbrick has undertaken a daunting two part character study of Benedict Arnold and Geor

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    characters Ü eBook or Kindle ePUB ↠ Nathaniel Philbrick Read [Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution] Æ Nathaniel Philbrick A new one by Philbrick? That makes me want to give a cantankerous middle aged SUEEEE of delight

  8. says: Read [Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution] Æ Nathaniel Philbrick

    read & download Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution Read [Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution] Æ Nathaniel Philbrick characters Ü eBook or Kindle ePUB ↠ Nathaniel Philbrick I expected this book to be about the defection of Benedict Arnold to the British than a history of the American Revolution But in order to understand why Arnold did what he did you need to know some of his reasoning why Hence the history les

  9. says: Read [Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution] Æ Nathaniel Philbrick

    Read [Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution] Æ Nathaniel Philbrick In Valiant Ambition Philbrick chronicles the life and tumultuous times of Benedict Arnold America's most infamous traitor I learned a few things about Arnold that I never knew and was reminded of several that I had forgotten In Philbrick's capable hands A new Arnold biography would've been a great book However fortunately for The

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    Read [Valiant Ambition George Washington Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution] Æ Nathaniel Philbrick Our Revolution has always been a period of history I find fascinating Since retiring I have been able to read about this and other historical periods and events without the guilt associated with neglected professional obligations It's kind of hard to enjoy a good book when you have so many periodicals and legal advance sheets sitting on under

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