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Harsh Words For Secretary of War - 1899 (Read 656 times)
Knute1
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Harsh Words For Secretary of War - 1899
Nov 7th, 2019 at 4:51pm
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From Tammany Times article dated 5/22/1899. Not sure what their mission was or what kind of leanings they had. But here is a scathing writing. Politics as usual:

    And now it appears that the Krag Jorgensen rifles, just sent to the Phillippines, at this late day in the history of our warfare, when our troops have been fighting for months with the antiquated Springfield rifle, have been resting undisturbed in their original cases since 1897.
    Just think of the hideousness of this criminal neglect!
    All through the war with Spain, our soldiers in Cuba were framed in the smoke of their short-range Springfields, a target for an enemy that was using smokeless powder and the deadly long-range Mauser, while thousands of Krag-Jorgensens were lying unused in our arsenals.
    This responsibility is directly and absolutely Alger's!
If he did not know that these guns were owned by the Government, he certainly should have known it!   
    Knowing it, he must have known that their place was in the hands of the soldiers, instead of being packed away in some warehouse.
    Is there to be no end of the list of blunders of this infinitely worse than incompetent Secretary of War?
    Shall he be whitewashed constantly, during the rest of the months of the continuance of the present administration?
    Will the inevitable accession of a Democratic successor to McKinley find the long record of Algerisms unfinished?
    It looks like it.

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Knute1
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Re: Harsh Words For Secretary of War - 1899
Reply #1 - Dec 7th, 2019 at 4:09pm
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Here is another article, from almost the same date, out of "The Nation" periodical with more accusations about unissued Krags. Part of it can be explained by the fact that some officers in charge did not think their volunteers would be able to handle the Krag without training. This is despite the fact that many regulars in the SAW hadn't fired their Krag's much, if at all, before going in to battle. Volunteers using the Trapdoor often times wanted to grab Krags from deceased regulars, but their officers forbade it. So it comes down to: Was it better to use smoky rifles or use a newer unfamiliar rifle? 20-20 hindsight may lean towards the unfamiliar Krag. I am not as familiar with the Philippine Insurrection on this particular subject.

  
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butlersrangers
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Re: Harsh Words For Secretary of War - 1899
Reply #2 - Dec 7th, 2019 at 11:58pm
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I suspect "Spanish Collusion"!!!

Tammany Hall Democrats and "Yellow Journalism" would certainly have no reason to misrepresent  events.

Let's see ... hmmm ... the next Presidents were Teddy Roosevelt and William Howard Taft. (I guess the male electorate didn't overly buy into the blame game). 
« Last Edit: Dec 8th, 2019 at 3:19am by butlersrangers »  
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Knute1
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Re: Harsh Words For Secretary of War - 1899
Reply #3 - Dec 8th, 2019 at 12:27am
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It may have fallen upon the older (high ranking?) officers. These older gentleman grew up with muzzleloaders. It would have been quite the event when the Springfield Trapdoor with its metallic cartridge came to be in the Army. These officers would have been relatively young men at the time. When the bolt action took on when these officers were mature, they may have thought that the youngsters would have difficulty learning how to use the new fangled thing.
When in reality, the youngsters could have taken to it very fast. Kind of like some of us needing to get with a grandchild to help us with a computer issue. How can they figure some of the things out when they are only seven without any years experience? Heck, they don't know how to drive a tractor when some of us did at seven. (I still have a Ford 8N for snow removal and some mowing.)

I just realized the point BR was making. Politics has never changed and it is conceivable that one party was making the other look bad in the above writings. I despise it in politics, at work, in a bar, etc. Of things that upset me the most is somebody making me look bad so they look better. And what is happening in our government right now.....well, it torques my jaw.
« Last Edit: Dec 8th, 2019 at 2:24pm by Knute1 »  
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