THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION

 

dont-tread-on-me

Why was it Fought and What For?

 

July 4, 1776. A document is signed that will forever change the world. It will spawn the world’s greatest superpower and champion of freedom. The events that led to this historic signing however are much bigger. The British Army was the most powerful in the world and the British Empire spanned the globe. Yet somehow a ragtag army of farmers and militiamen beat them.

 

Why? What were the reasons that this incredible feat could’ve come to pass? There were certainly many; they all contributed to what some could consider the most important and influential war in history.  This is a list of grievances that the king committed towards the colonists, compiled by the colonists themselves, found in The Declaration of Independence:

 

“He has refused his assent to laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.

He has forbidden his governors to pass laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.

He has refused to pass other laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of representation in the legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.

He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.

He has dissolved representative houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.

He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the legislative powers, incapable of annihilation, have returned to the people at large for their exercise; the state remaining in the meantime exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.

He has endeavored to prevent the population of these states; for that purpose obstructing the laws for naturalization of foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migration hither, and raising the conditions of new appropriations of lands.

He has obstructed the administration of justice, by refusing his assent to laws for establishing judiciary powers.

He has made judges dependent on his will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.

He has erected a multitude of new offices, and sent hither swarms of officers to harass our people, and eat out their substance.

He has kept among us, in times of peace, standing armies without the consent of our legislature.

He has affected to render the military independent of and superior to civil power.

He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his assent to their acts of pretended legislation:

  • For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
  • For protecting them, by mock trial, from punishment for any murders which they should commit on the inhabitants of these states:
  • For cutting off our trade with all parts of the world:
  • For imposing taxes on us without our consent:
  • For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of trial by jury:
  • For transporting us beyond seas to be tried for pretended offenses:
  • For abolishing the free system of English laws in a neighboring province, establishing therein an arbitrary government, and enlarging its boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule in these colonies:
  • For taking away our charters, abolishing our most valuable laws, and altering fundamentally the forms of our governments:
  • For suspending our own legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.

He has abdicated government here, by declaring us out of his protection and waging war against us.

He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burned our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.

He is at this time transporting large armies of foreign mercenaries to complete the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of cruelty and perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the head of a civilized nation.

He has constrained our fellow citizens taken captive on the high seas to bear arms against their country, to become the executioners of their friends and brethren, or to fall themselves by their hands.

He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavored to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian savages, whose known rule of warfare, is undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions”(Continental).

 

For all these wrongs did the colonists decide to free themselves from England.

thinkhurt.com_Massachusetts-militiamen-challenge-the-British-Army.

What did they fight for?

 

The colonist militia men fought for liberty, justice and freedom. They no longer would passively stand for the Tyranny of the King. In the words of Thomas Jefferson, “ I prefer dangerous freedom over peaceful slavery”(Jefferson). This shows the militiamen’s fight for an ideal of something greater. And their ultimate purpose to make their land a better place to live. What they fought for is stated in the preamble to the United States Constitution: “ We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity”(Congress). This was the militiamans fight, to keep his country free.

 

The American Revolution was one of the most important wars in history. It showed that a smaller seemingly weaker force, when motivated by the principles of liberty, could take on a Tyrant and win. It was fought to free the people from tyranny and to secure the blessings of liberty for all Americans. It motivated people around the world, and still does today. The revolution instilled into the hearts of men the eternal drive for freedom. God Bless the USA.

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Works Cited

 

Congress. “The Constitution of the United States of America” 1787.

USA.

 

Continental Congress. “The Declaration of Independence” 1776. USA.

 

Jefferson, Thomas. “Quotation” 1787.

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What are the differences between the CIA and FBI?

CIA-vs-FBI

 

The CIA and FBI are both United States intelligence and law enforcement agencies. The CIA is the Central Intelligence Agency and the FBI is the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The simple difference is that the FBI has jurisdiction over the whole United States; while the CIA has jurisdiction over the entire world. That’s the big difference but the agencies do have many small differences.

The CIA is headquartered in Langley,VA; FBI headquarters however are in Washington DC(Diffen). The CIA is a newer organization too, it was established after WW2 under President Truman(CIA). The FBI started during the term of Theodore Roosevelt and its early ranks were actually Secret Service agents. The FBI started when progressives were on the rise across America and an interstate law enforcement agency was needed(Differ). Although these agencies have different jurisdictions and personal goals they both share one common goal, to protect the people of the United States of America. These are lists of the Agencies main missions:     

 

FBI

“1. Protect the United States from terrorist attack

  1. Protect the United States against foreign intelligence operations and espionage
  2. Protect the United States against cyber-based attacks and high-technology crimes
  3. Combat public corruption at all levels
  4. Protect civil rights
  5. Combat transnational/national criminal organizations and enterprises
  6. Combat major white-collar crime
  7. Combat significant violent crime
  8. Support federal, state, local and international partners
  9. Upgrade technology to successfully perform the FBI’s mission”(FBI).

 

CIA

  1. Close intelligence gaps with enhanced collection and analysis on the countries, non-state actors, and issues most critical to the President and senior national security team.
  2. Fulfill our global mission to give customers decision advantage as they confront an unprecedented volume and diversity of worldwide developments that affect US interests.
  3. Leverage technological advances for better performance in all mission areas—collection, analysis, covert action, and counterintelligence—while protecting against technological threats to the security of our information, operations, and officers.
  4. Improve the ways we attract, develop, and retain talent to maximize each CIA officer’s potential to contribute to achieving mission.
  5. Better manage Agency resources during a period of fiscal austerity”(CIA).

 

Whatever the threats of tomorrow are, we can rest assured that both the CIA and FBI will do their best to protect us, no matter their differences.

 

Works Cited

CIA. “CIA Vision, Mission, Ethos & Challenges” CIA. US Department of Justice. March 24, 2016.

Diffen Editors “CIA vs FBI” Diffen. diffen.com. 24 March 2016.

FBI. “Quick Facts” FBI. US Department of Justice. 2014

 

The Right to Bear Arms:

The Second Amendment of the United States

 

“A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”   

This is the second amendment of the Bill of Rights in the US Constitution, and a vital part of it. It is a right that was essential to the formation of the nation. The Revolution was possible because the citizens had weapons and could fight against tyranny. The militiamen were able to defend themselves from a government intent on suppressing them through powder and ball.

 

What is the Purpose?

 

The purpose of the second amendment is a much disputed topic. The main purpose of the second amendment is to protect the people from threats both foreign and domestic. Although hunting and recreational shooting is a way to exercise the rights derived from the second amendment, that is not the full intended purpose. Just like in the 1770’s we need to have a way to throw off the yoke of tyranny and to never allow it to overcome the American ideal. Thomas Jefferson, founding father and 3rd President of the United States, described the purpose of the second amendment in one sentence “The beauty of the Second Amendment is that it will not be needed until they try to take it”(Jefferson). This is exemplified by what Adolf Hitler said in 1933, “To conquer a nation, first disarm its citizens”(Hitler).  If only the state has guns, like they did in Nazi Germany, then they can do anything they wish without fear of revolt. The U.S may not be in serious danger of an overreaching tyrant, but it will only stay that way if we are allowed to keep our constitutional rights. This right to self defense is not just for domestic use against tyrants or criminals but for additional defense against foreign threats. In a worst case scenario the citizens need to be able to be the last line of defense. In the event that the army could ever be defeated the people need to e able to carry on the fight.  This second amendment right that arms the people have made United States citizens the most powerful on earth.  The people must never be completely disarmed or they will lose that power that is rightfully theirs. The second amendment has these purposes and others that are vital to the nation.           

 

What Does it Entitle?

It has sparked court cases all over the country such as United States vs. Miller, McDonald vs. City of Chicago and District of Columbia vs. Heller(Institute). These cases were over what the second amendment allowed citizens to carry. The second amendment says that it gives the right to keep and bear arms; this means they have the right to own and carry guns.  

 

Who is Entitled to Possess Arms?

 

Every United States citizen is entitled to the right to bear arms. However restrictions have been placed on this right to prevent gun violence such as not allowing people addicted to illegal substances, dishonorable discharges from the armed forces or domestic abusers to possess firearms(USDJ).ThomasJeffersonQuote1 On top of these laws there are state regulations that must be followed in every state. Some states have more restrictions on this right than others but you can influence the change in these policies. Write to local state congressman or state senator about your feelings towards these laws and inspire change. These are some websites or documents that you can go to in order to find out what these restrictions are.

 

Guns are a controversial necessity in our country. They protect us, but in the wrong hands they can hurt us. But “the only thing that can stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun,” as the NRA says(Hunter). We need to raise our voices to preserve our rights; the founding fathers put the second amendment second for a reason. Its that important and exists to protect the first. GWQuote2ndAExercise that first amendment right and contact your state representatives through this house of representatives directory to express your feelings on the Second Amendment.

 

 

 

Works Cited

 

Hitler, Adolf. “Quotable Quotes” Goodreads. goodreads.com

 

Institute, Legal Information. “Second Amendment” law. cornell.edu. Cornell University

Law School.

 

Jefferson, Thomas. “The Beauty of the Second Amendment…Citation.” monticello.org.         

Monticello. 2007

 

USDJ. “Firearm Possession Prohibition” United States Department of Justice.

rip.uscourts.gov. PDF. 1997.  

  

 

   

 

 

Who are the Special Forces of the United States Military and What Do They Do?

The Special Forces are an elite group of the best soldiers in the world. The big special forces groups that we know of are: The Green Berets(Army), The Night Stalkers(Army), FAST(Marines), The Rangers(Army), SEALs(Navy), Delta Force(Army), Force Recon(Marines), MARSOC(Marines), Air Force Pararescue(Air Force), Swick Force(Navy), SOWT(Air Force) and ANGLICO(Marines)(CBSNews).

 

Army Special Forces

The Green Berets, The Rangers and Delta Force all are Army special forces. Their missions can be classified down into five categories: counter-terrorism, direct action, foreign internal defense, special reconnaissance and unconventional warfare(U.SArmy). The Green Berets are assigned into 12 men teams and conduct unconventional warfare including sabotage, guerrilla tactics and subversion. The Rangers are light infantry men who have many similar missions but unlike the Green Berets who require 3 years of military service before applying you can apply as you enlist. Delta force is an even more elite and selective group; they recruit the best of the best from the Rangers and Green Berets to join their ranks. Delta Force is so exclusive it is estimated to have less than 1,200 members(Explainer). The Night Stalkers are also a very specialized group, they are also known as the 160th Airborne Regiment or SOAR. They provide specialized helicopter backup. These divisions of soldiers are some of the best trained in the world.  

 

Navy Special Forces

The United States Navy is the dominant force upon the oceans of the world; they too have their most elite. Both the SEAL’s and SWCC are very skilled in the art of war. The Navy SEAL’s are one of the most renowned special forces out there, most specifically team 6 for their role in operation Neptune Spear. The SEAL’s acronym stands for SEa, Air and Land, the territory they operate on(Recknagel). They must go through years of training to ever qualify to go on missions. SWCC or Special Warfare Combatant Craft Crewmen, are created to support the SEAL’s and other special forces with their armada of fast, well-armed boats. They are ready to fight anywhere in the world that touches water(SWCC). These are the most powerful forces on the water.

 

Air Force

Air Force Pararescue members are prepared to do anything to save a soldier’s life. Whatever they need to get to a wounded soldier, you can trust they will. This is a corp of all men who have what it takes to accomplish this demanding 24/7 career(USAF). SOWT is also a big contributor to the armed forces; they utilize weather predictions against enemy forces(CBSNews). S.W.O.T stands for Special Operations Weather Team. This intel they gather also contributes to correctly planning operations. These services are much needed in the military.

 

Marines

The Marines are the best of the best; a special force in their own right and a division of the Navy.  They are the most elite semi-branch of the armed forces. F.A.S.T, Force Recon, MARSOC and ANGLICO all operate under the Marine banner. F.A.S.T stands for the Marines Fleet Anti-Terrorism Security Team. One of their missions is to guard sensitive navy nuclear installations. A F.A.S.T team was also sent to Libya after the attacks on the U.S consulate in 2012. Force Recon is a force known for going behind enemy lines for intelligence; mostly by underwater missions. MARSOC is a team of Marines and SEAL’s that was created to integrate special forces from the two branches. ANGLICO Marines are specialized in long range firepower; they know how to take out a target from very, very far away. Their capability to take out targets goes along with their motto, Lightning from the sky, Thunder from the sea(CBSNews).

 

The Armed Forces of the United States of America are the most powerful in the world. But even within the ranks of the strongest, there are stronger.  The special forces of the U.S are the best of the best and most skilled soldiers in the world. These men and women from all branches put their lives on the line for your safety.  God Bless America.

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Works Cited

 

CBS News Editors, “The most elite U.S special forces” CBS. CBS Interactive Inc. 2015

 

Explainer, “Green Berets and Rangers: What’s the Difference?” Slate Group. Graham Holdings Company. 2015

 

SWCC. “Overview” US Navy. United States of America.

 

Recknagel, Charles. “Who Are The Navy SEALs And What Is Team Six?” Radio Free Europe Radio Liberty. May 6, 2011.

U.S Air Force, “Careers” USAF. United States of America.

 

U.S Army, “Primary Missions” U.S Army. United States Military.

 

How Do You Become The President of the United States and How Does the Electoral College Work?

The President of the United States the the most powerful man in the world, and whatever he or she does is observed with intensity. But how does a person attain this position? It’s not really any secret, the answer can be found in one of the most famed document of our time, the Constitution of the United States of America. It’s all found in Article II section 1, “No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any Person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States”(Congress) So these are the qualifiers for a presidential candidate, but what must someone do to enter the race?Sealofthepresident

To run to win you need to campaign, campaigns can cost vast amounts of money. In order to run a campaign that will spend a large amount and raise a large amount first you must register with the Federal elections commission. Each state also has its own requirements to get on the ballot. The list of these requirements are found on this document prepared by NASS, the National Association of Secretaries of State: file:///home/chronos/u-0220b473f9b67cb092e701aa1d3452d222a3c013/Downloads/research-ballot-access-president-092612.pdf  

You can run for President in two basic ways, as a party nominee, or as an independent candidate. The advantages of running as a party nominee are numerous, such as getting various funds and support as well as having a huge group to back you up. In addition to that CNN reports, ¨No third-party candidate has ever won a U.S. presidential election.  The strongest showing for a third-party candidate came in 1912, when former President Teddy Roosevelt left the Republican Party. He ended up coming in second, with 27.4 percent of the popular vote and 88 electoral votes¨(Dexter) However that does not mean it’s impossible to win.  

The way that the winner of the presidential race is determined can be very complicated; it is called the electoral college. The electoral college is a system that gives the candidates electoral votes. The votes for each state are determined by the amount of representatives it has. The total number of points is 538 for the 435 representatives, 100 senators and the three electors from the District of Columbia(Huffington Post). The electors carry out the votes of the people of the state and cast it to the president of the senate who announces the winner on January 6. The map of electoral votes is shown below.  

Electoral College  

All the states but two, Nebraska and Maine, have a system where the majority candidate in the state takes all electoral votes. In the two states that do not have this system, “In Nebraska and Maine, electoral votes are assigned by proportional representation, meaning that the top vote-getter in those states wins two electoral votes (for the two Senators) while the remaining electoral votes are allocated congressional district by congressional district. These rules make it possible for both candidates to receive electoral votes from Nebraska and Maine, unlike the winner-take-all system in the other 48 states”(Huffington Post). To win the college you have to get at least 270 out of the 538 votes for the majority. Because of the college system the popular vote of the entire nation counts for nothing more than a fun fact. Many candidates have won the presidency without the popular vote, and many have lost with it.  

As you can see, the process to become the president of the United States is a long and complicated road, but if you put enough effort into it anything is possible.

Works Cited

Continental Congress, “The Constitution of the United States” September 17, 1789

Huffington Post Editors, “What is the Electoral College how it works and why it matters.” Huffington Post. November 6, 2012.

Dexter, Jim, “How Third Party Candidates Affect Elections” CNN. March 10, 2010  

 

How Did ISIS/ISIL Form and What Are We Doing to Stop Them?

ISIS and ISIL are are almost synonymous to the general public so why do we use both names? The term ISIL actually came from the President of the United States and has a much more significant meaning. The acronym of ISIS stands for the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, while ISIL stands for the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant. Seems the same right? No! By the President recognizing and using the terminology of the Levant he shows that their true purpose is understood(Beck). The Levant is an ancient area that according to Stu on the Glenn Beck Show, “encompasses parts of Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, and a place called Israel”(Stu). This is significant because it shows that the US is determined to stop them from their true mission, not to take over just modern Syria and Iraq, but to take all of ancient Syria and Iraq. So that’s what it means, but how did they form and obtain advanced American military technology? As Ali Khedery from the Guardian says, “‘Principally, Isis is the product of a genocide that continued unabated as the world stood back and watched. It is the illegitimate child born of pure hate and pure fear – the result of 200,000 murdered Syrians and of millions more displaced and divorced from their hopes and dreams “‘(Khedery). The country was torn apart after the US invasion and divided. The government that was set up after the invasion was all Shiite and was very anti-Sunni. This caused divisions among the people of and many protesters were eliminated with mass firepower as described by Alex Kane of AlterNet. He did step down after persuasion but left the country fragmented and with a lot of US weapons lying around which made it easy for angry protesters to be armed and dangerous. A more recent article by the fiscal times gives another scary instance of ISIS seizing US weapons; in July ISIS faced off with the US backed Iraqi army and as usual the Iraqis fled leaving valuable US weapons behind. The report gives a list of lost technology and weaponry with a rough estimate of the monetary loss. This is their list

  • 2,300 Humvee armored vehicles @ $70,000 per copy. Total: $161 million
  • 40 M1A1 Abram tanks @ $4.3 million per copy. Total: $172 million
  • 52 M198 Howitzer mobile gun systems @ $527,337 per copy. Total: $27.4 million
  • 74,000 Army machine guns @ $4,000 per copy. Total: $296 million

“The grand total comes to $656.4 million, but experts say those losses represent just a portion of the many hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of U.S.-supplied military equipment that has fallen into ISIS’s hands and is being used against the U.S. and allied forces on the ground in Iraq and neighboring Syria”(Pianin).  This shows how much money the US is losing to ISIS, but it’s not only the US whose weapons are being used by the insurgents. Pianin also reports that ISIS has Chinese and  Russian weapons. With these weapons ISIS has taken from 12,000 to 35,000 square miles.(Gilsinan)

As of June 2015  this is the ISIS/ISIL territory:

So what are we doing to stop this? The only attacks that the US carries out now are airstrikes, but we also send weapons to the defenders and military trainers. In January about 3,222 targets were eliminated due to US led airstrikes, using about 4,775 munitions. Australia, Belgium, Britain, Canada, Denmark, France and the Netherlands all are participating in the Iraq strikes. The countries conducting airstrikes in Syria are Bahrain, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (Alexander). These military trainers, weapons and airstrikes are helping to slowly degrade ISIL, but it won’t be enough. The United States has vast military power and many allies who are threatened by the ISIL advance; additionally ISIL poses a threat to the American homeland and needs to be stopped. The President’s basic plan is airstrike, intelligence, weapon shipment and humanitarian aid; many agree that this isn’t enough. ( Go to this video to see President Obama’s Address on ISIS) We cannot win this war by containing the problem with air strikes, this gives them sanctuary in the civilian areas they have taken to lay out their plots as bin Laden did. Just keeping the problem  My opinion of what we should do would be to send in a wave of ground and air troops in one campaign that would take ISIL by surprise and either destroy them or weaken them so much they will never be a threat again. It is a sacrifice to send in our people to a place where they may not return, but we need to show the world that if you poke a sleeping giant, it tends to wake up. If these insurgents have decided that they are going to attack allies and citizens of the United States they will be obliterated. 

Check out this video from the Glenn Beck show for some more information on the Levant and what the President calling ISIS ISIL means.

What is the Levant

Works Cited

Alexander, David. ”Here’s The List Of What 3,222 US-Led Airstrikes Against ISIS Have Destroyed Since August” buisnessinsider.com. The Business Insider. January 7, 2015.   

Beck, Glenn. “Why Obama’s use of the term ISIL instead of ISIS is actually really important.” glennbeck.com. The Blaze. September 9, 2015

Burguiere, Stu. “Why Obama’s use of the term ISIL instead of ISIS is actually really important.” glennbeck.com. The Blaze. September 9, 2015

Kane, Alex.” How ISIS ended up stocked with American weapons.” alternet.org. AlterNet. August 18, 2014

Pianin, Eric. “US shoots Itself in the foot by accidentally arming ISIS” thefiscaltimes.com. The Fiscal Times. June 4, 2015