During the Civil War, Americans confronted profound moral problems about how to fight in the conflict. In this innovative book, D. H. Dilbeck reveals how the Union sought to wage a just war against the Confederacy. He shows that northerners fought according to a distinct "moral vision of war," an array of ideas about the nature of a truly just and humane military effort. Dilbeck tells how Union commanders crafted rules of conduct to ensure their soldiers defeated the Confederacy as swiftly as possible while also limiting the total destruction unleashed by the fighting. Dilbeck explores how Union soldiers abided by official just-war policies as they battled guerrillas, occupied cities, retaliated against enemy soldiers, and came into contact with Confederate civilians. In contrast to recent scholarship focused solely on the Civil War's carnage, Dilbeck details how the Union sought both to deal sternly with Confederates and to adhere to certain constraints. The Union's earnest effort to wage a just war ultimately helped give the Civil War its distinct character, a blend of immense destruction and remarkable restraint. -- Amazon.com.
Bibliography, etc. Note
Includes bibliographical references (pages 187-208) and index.
Formatted Contents Note
Introduction: responsible to one another and to God: the Union's moral vision of war A war of barbarism or of comparative humanity: combatting guerrillas Not to destroy but to make good: occupying cities The more vigorously wars are pursued, the better it is for humanity: Francis Lieber and General Orders No. 100 The sternest feature of war: retaliation against Confederate soldiers Even in the midst of an enemy's country the dictates of humanity must at least be observed: the hard yet humane war against Confederate civilians Conclusion: was the American Civil War a just war?
KF366 .D55 2016
Chapel Hill : The University of North Carolina Press,