British Burn Down White House

On Friday, June 29, 2018, Canada announced billions of dollars in tariffs against the United States. These tariffs go into effect today, July 1st. Yoghurt coming in mostly from Wisconsin will be taxed. Whiskey coming in mostly from Tennessee and Kentucky will be taxed. Other tariffs will be imposed by Canada on ketchup, lawn mowers, and motorboats. [1]

Canada is imposing these tariffs in retaliation for earlier tariffs on steel and aluminum coming in from Canada. [1]

An argument for the tariffs on steel and aluminum is that it is a matter of national security. “Didn’t you guys [Canadians] burn down the White House?” rhetorically asked President Donald Trump of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Immediately taking the side of Canada and against that of our President, who is trying to negotiate a better NAFTA deal in our behalf, was CNN. “Oh really now, it was the British, not the Canadians, who burned down the White House,” they snickered. (Background: New War of 1812, Ersjdamoo’s Blog, June 30, 2018.)

Technically it is correct that the British burned down the White House. However the situation is more complex than CNN would have us believe.

It was in 1814 that British soldiers burned down the White House. This was during the War of 1812. The United States had invaded Canada, a British holding. British and Canadian soldiers fought against the United States. During various incursions into Canada, the Americans destroyed homes of non-combatant civilians. This outraged the British-Canadian forces, and retaliatory acts were approved. [2]

This was the situation when a British force landed near Washington, DC. Defending Washington was an entrenched American force about twice the size of the British force. It seemed evident that a force half the size of a force occupying a strong defensive position would be defeated. President James Madison went to the White House and prepared a victory feast for the American officers. [2]

Then things quickly went wrong for the Americans, detailed in the book, The War of 1812, published by Library of America. It was a total rout for the Americans. At this point a 4-mile road into Washington lay open to the British. [2]

But the British did not plan to burn down the White House and other government buildings. Instead, they were willing to accept a sum of money. A British general and his aides rode forward under a flag of truce. [2]

All might have been well, except some of the American soldiers violated the flag of truce and shot at the British general, killing his horse. This outrage against gentlemanly war customs infuriated the British and the order was given to destroy the government buildings. Yet even in their fury, the British did no harm against civilian dwellings. [2]

President James Madison hurriedly fled across the Potomac River. When British soldiers entered the White House, they discovered Madison’s premature victory feast ready and waiting. And so they sat down and enjoyed a fine meal. Then they burned down the White House. [2]

——- Sources ——-
[1] “Canada releases final list of tariffs vs. U.S.”, Associated Press. Published locally in the Champaign-Urbana News-Gazette, June 30, 2018, page A-4.
[2] The War Of 1812, edited by Donald R. Hickey. Library Of America, 2013.


About ersjdamoo

Editor of Conspiracy Nation, later renamed Melchizedek Communique. Close associate of the late Sherman H. Skolnick. Jack of all trades, master of none. Sagittarius, with Sagittarius rising. I'm not a bum, I'm a philosopher.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to British Burn Down White House

  1. Pingback: Freak Hurricane In Washington | Ersjdamoo's Blog

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s