Posts Tagged civil war

Gun Control’s Racist Roots

From The Hill:

One month after the Confederate surrender in 1865, Frederick Douglass urged federal action to stop state and local infringement of the right to arms. Until this was accomplished, Douglass argued, “the work of the abolitionists is not finished.”

Kansas Senator Samuel Pomeroy extolled the three “indispensable” “safeguards of liberty under our form of government,” the sanctity of the home, the right to vote, and “the right to bear arms.” So “if the cabin door of the freedman is broken open and the intruder enter…then should a well-loaded musket be in the hand of the occupant to send the polluted wretch to another world.”

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The History Of The Gun Control Movement

From The Tenth Amendment Center:

Kopel notes that gun control primarily originated after the Civil War as a means to keep freed slaves from having access to firearms, as well as to prevent dueling. Throughout the 1800s, he writes, gun control laws were almost “exclusively a Southern phenomenon.” Outside of that region, the only type of gun control that really caught on was prohibition of concealed-carry, although open carry was still permitted.

What finally brought gun control into the national spotlight was apprehension over revolutionary movements after the communists overthrew of the Russian provisional government in 1917. The gun control movement gained further support for restricting handguns when Prohibition led to a major crime wave in the 1920s.

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The Atlantic: Gun Rights Are Racist

The Atlantic:

Public-carry advocates like to cite historical court opinions to support their constitutional vision, but those opinions are, to put it mildly, highly problematic. The supportive precedent they rely on comes from the antebellum South and represented less a national consensus than a regional exception rooted in the unique culture of slavery and honor. By focusing only on sympathetic precedent, and ignoring the national picture, gun-rights advocates find themselves venerating a moment at which slavery, honor, violence, and the public carrying of weapons were intertwined.

The NRA’s response:
The authors of this piece are correct in their sense that our current gun debate has its roots in the 19th-century American South—but they managed to get the true alignment of things completely backwards. It is the modern gun control movement that is absolutely a product of racist legislators trying to deprive black Americans of the ability to defend themselves.

When the Civil War ended and the Reconstruction Amendments freed the slaves and assigned them equal rights under the law, the white landowners at the top of the socio-economic ladder found themselves in a predicament. Not only were they deprived of their resource pool of unfree labor, but they now lived side by side with a black population that outnumbered them—and was about to enjoy equal access to both ballot boxes and firearms. These landowners acted swiftly to defend their dominant position. Encouraging poor whites to cling to a sense of racial identity and despise their black neighbors was part of their strategy. The other part was an explosion of new legislation that spat in the face of the Constitution’s clear intention to guarantee the rights of the former slaves.

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Syria: A Chronology of How the Civil War May End

Syria: A Chronology of How the Civil War May End is republished with permission of Stratfor.”

Analysis

Editor’s Note: The conflict in Syria is entering a critical phase. Turkey has at long last entered the fight, conducting airstrikes against Islamic State targets in Syria — and capitalizing on the opportunity to attack Kurdistan Workers’ Party militants in northern Iraq. Turkey’s newfound vigor is fueled by a convergence of U.S. and Turkish interests in the region, evidenced by the July 23 agreement between Ankara and Washington to allow U.S. forces to use Incirlik Air Base. There is a shared interest in combating the Islamic State, and both countries want to see a diplomatic resolution to the Syrian conflict that would end the fighting and remove Syrian President Bashar al Assad from power. Al Assad’s frank July 26 comments about the level of fatigue in the Syrian army, combined with the continued success of Syrian rebel groups and the prospect of Turkey’s increased participation, could indicate that the al Assad regime itself is considering its options.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry will to travel to Doha on Aug. 3, where he will discuss the future of Syria with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov. Stratfor has been tracking the evolution and perspectives of the key parties involved in the Syrian conflict from the opening of hostilities. We are publishing this chronology to highlight our previous analyses and forecasts. Read the rest of this entry »

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Iran, Syria: Smuggling Weapons to Gain Influence in the West Bank

Iran, Syria: Smuggling Weapons to Gain Influence in the West Bank is republished with permission of Stratfor.”

Summary

There are growing indications that Iran, Syria and their local proxies may be attempting to build up militant capabilities in the West Bank to eventually threaten Israel. Physically transferring weapons into Fatah-controlled West Bank will remain a key challenge, as recent arrests of weapons smugglers in Jordan have shown. Though Iran and Syria face many constraints in trying to spread militancy to the West Bank, their quiet efforts are worth noting, particularly as Hamas and Iran are now finding reasons to repair their relationship after a period of strain. Read the rest of this entry »

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Obstacles to a Syrian Regime Victory in Aleppo

Obstacles to a Syrian Regime Victory in Aleppo is republished with permission of Stratfor.”

Summary

In the wake of their seizure of Qusair in western Syria, Syrian loyalist forces are bent on capitalizing on their newfound momentum by wresting more of the loyalist core from the rebels and advancing on rebel-held territory. In order to continue their advance, however, loyalist forces will have to address logistical difficulties, potentially fight through powerful rebel blocking positions and overcome increasing U.S. weapons aid to the rebels.

Analysis

The regime has by and large proved that the loyalist core is not seriously threatened at the moment. However, for their resurgence to seriously undermine the rebellion, the loyalists would need a victory in Aleppo. Seizing Aleppo would simultaneously give the loyalists effective control of the vast majority of Syria’s population centers, defeat perhaps the largest concentration of rebel forces and inflict a terrible blow to the rebels’ morale. Read the rest of this entry »

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Al Assad’s Last Stand

Al Assad’s Last Stand is republished with permission of Stratfor.”

By Omar Lamrani

The battle for Damascus is raging with increasing intensity while rebels continue to make substantial advances in Syria’s north and east. Every new air base, city or town that falls to the rebels further underlines that Bashar al Assad’s writ over the country is shrinking. It is no longer possible to accurately depict al Assad as the ruler of Syria. At this point, he is merely the head of a large and powerful armed force, albeit one that still controls a significant portion of the country.

The nature of the conflict has changed significantly since it began nearly two years ago. The rebels initially operated with meager resources and equipment, but bolstered by defections, some outside support and their demographic advantage, they have managed to gain ground on what was previously a far superior enemy. Even the regime’s qualitative superiority in equipment is fast eroding as the rebels start to frequently utilize main battle tanks, infantry fighting vehicles, rocket and tube artillery and even man-portable air-defense systems captured from the regime’s stockpiles.

Weary and stumbling, the regime is attempting to push back rebel forces in and near Damascus and to maintain a corridor to the Alawite coast while delaying rebel advances in the rest of the country. Al Assad and his allies will fight for every inch, fully aware that their power depends on the ability of the regime forces to hold ground.  Read the rest of this entry »

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Syrian Rebels Have Apparently Shot Down Several Aircraft

From Danger Room:

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Mexico, On The Brink Of Apocalypse?

“In an interview by Carmen Aristegui, the security specialist Edgardo Buscaglia says that “The violence is like a perfect storm in which many factors are interacting to lead Mexico into a civil war scenario”

Faced with the violent events this week in various parts of the country and how they occurred, some commentators caution that we face a new escalation of violence in Mexico: the stage of terrorism.

Where once the United States had been particularly attentive to what was happening in Ciudad Juarez, now it is also deeply concerned about what is happening in Nuevo Laredo.

Nuevo Laredo happens to be the largest inland port for commerce between Mexico and the U.S. where at least 12,000 tractor trailers full of industrial, agricultural and consumer goods pass daily. A permanent state of chaos in Nuevo Laredo would seriously impact trade between both nations.

Today it is assumed that the Mexican government is unable to control the violence that affects it’s innocent citizens. And if this is happening on the border with the U.S. then the national security of the U.S is also affected.”

http://www.borderlandbeat.com/2010/07/mexico-on-brink-co-near-apocalypse_1788.html

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