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Canada/USA History you May not Know #3

The lead-up to the War of 1812

CANADA/USA HISTORY YOU PROBABLY DO NOT KNOW #3


The lead-up to the war of 1812

Continuing with "Canada - A People's History":

Ontario is called the "upper country." Now the "Butler's Rangers"
are to make the Niagara area their homestead, no longer their
base camp to raid the American rebels in New York State, as
during the revolution. Men, women, and children went to work
clearing the land.

Indians had lost land they held for centuries.

Writes Chief Brant:

"When we heard peace was made between his Majesty and the
Americans, we were struck with astonishment at learning we were
forgotten in the treaty. We could not believe it possible that
such firm friends and allies could be so neglected by a nation so
remarkable for its honor and glory, for whom we had served with
so much zeal and fidelity."

Britain tries to carve out lands for the Iroquois in the peace
treaty, but the Americans refused.

In the fall of 1784 Brant leads 1,800 of his people to a new
homeland on the banks of the Grand River. They will re-build and
re-establish themselves.

At the other end of Lake Ontario thousands of loyalists are
populating the land along the St.Lawrence river, between Cornwall
and Kingston. By 1791 the upper country has the fastest growing
population on the continent. The loyalists agitate to be a colony
separate from Quebec, to govern themselves. The loyalists have
already convinced Britain to divide Nova Scotia - hence the
Province of New Brunswick is born. London realizes it must divide
Quebec or the loyalists and the French will never live in peace.
In June 1791 Quebec is divided into "upper" and "lower" Canada
(the "upper" will eventually be called "Ontario), each with its
own Governor and elected assembly.

Upper Canada (higher in elevation from lower) changes
dramatically under Governor Simcoe. He offers free land -
attracting new settlers from New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania,
Connecticut and other States. Soon the American settlers will
out-number the loyalists by 4 to 1. The new settlers have
practically no allegiance to the British crown. Within 15 years
it will haunt those who must again defend Canada.

On the 21st of January Loui 16th, King of France, is executed.
The killing of a king helped propel the 2nd great revolution of
the century. The war in Europe would spill across into North
America. Canada would again have to fight for survival - a war
that would decide the future of two nations, and extinguish the
dreams of a third.

DEMOCRACY AND DISSENT

The French in Quebec are turned to revulsion by the French
revolution. The revolution drives a wedge between France and her
colony of Quebec. Britain does not see it. When Sir James Craig,
the new Governor arrives in 1806 all he sees is 300,000 people
speaking French and holding to the Roman Catholic religion. Many
of the English think the French would join the American force if
it was led by a Frenchman.

Britain has now been at war with France for almost 13 continuous
years. Rumors in Quebec have Napoleon forces invading and
Canadian Quebecers revolting, taking the side of France. Some
English want Quebec to become un-French - to be English.

But lower Canada is no threat to Britain - she has embraced the
British Parliament system and the concept of free elections. The
most powerful Quebec politician is Bedau, and he declares the
French Canadian is no different than any English Canadian in his
love for English liberty and his attachment to the English
Government. He asks: "Does loyalty consist in identity of
language?"

There is dissent also in upper Canada (Ontario). Britain fears
another war with America is coming and cannot forgive any dissent
or opposition. The brilliant Quebec politician, Bedau, publishes
a statement that Britain can count on the loyalty of Canadian
Quebec Frenchmen. He tells all that if the Americans were
successful in invading Canada they would make the French Canadian
their slaves. The British Governor does not believe him, and has
him arrested - Bedau's political life comes to an end.

But when war does come Bedau is proved to be correct, the loyalty
of French Quebec stays with Britain. Bedau writes: "The French
Canadian is a conquered people, but they will show you the path
of honor."

A MERE MATTER OF MARCHING

By 1811 Britain's tactics with war with France have enraged the
new USA. British war ships are taking American ships bound for
Europe and pressing the American seamen into the Royal Navy. The
Washington "war hawks" as they came to be called, led by Henry
Clay, are demanding retaliation. Britain itself is too far to
attack, but British colonies (upper and lower Canada) .... well
as Thomas Jefferson boasted: "Taking them will be a mere matter
of marching."

General Brock in upper Canada prepares for war. Brock will have
the nearly impossible task of defending upper Canada. The
Province is vulnerable just about everywhere, but especially in
Detroit and Niagara.

Fortunately for Brock the Americans have handed him an unexpected
ally. The Shawnee Chief Tacumseh has no love for the British, but
he despises the Americans. The white settlers pushing to the West
in the USA have taken millions of acres of land from the Indian.
Tacumseh has seen both his father and brother killed by white
settlers. Now he sees an opportunity to make a stand. He said:

"Where today are the powerful tribes of our people? Vanished
before the greed and oppression of the white man. As snow before
the summer sun. Shall we let ourselves be destroyed in our turn,
without making an effort worthy of our race? Shall we without a
struggle give up our homes, ours lands, and the graves of our
dead, and everything that we hold dear and sacred? I know that
you will join with me in saying .... NEVER .... NEVER!"

Tacumseh encouraged his people to support the British, and now
the odds dramatically changed.

Without the Indians, the survival of upper Canada seemed bleak,
with only 1,600 British troops and many recent settlers being
Americans, General Brock knew he could not counted on the loyalty
of settlers from the USA.

On the 18th of June 1812 President James Madison signs the
declaration of war against Britain.

..........

The sad and shameful history of the house of Joseph as they
inherited the new world of North America. There is so much
killing, brutality, and disgrace, in this history, can we really
say they were closer in serving God back in those days, than we
are today? I do not think so. They were just as much carnal and
deceived in false religion and ideas about God (doing it "in
God's name" and "in God we trust") as people from the millenniums
before (think of the horribleness that went on "in God's name"
during the middle ages), and as deceived as most people and
leaders today.

As we shall see the war between the USA and Canada of 1812 was a
sham and pitiful undertaking by military junkies that had no idea
about the true God or His way of life. They certainly had no idea
of Bible prophecy, or they could have left war and killing out of
the equation of inheriting North America. God could have and
would have given it to them in peace and friendship, where fellow
humans of all colors and languages would have benefited from each
other. There would have been no need of bloodshed, if the men and
leaders would have had their hearts and minds in the right place,
living by every word of God, as Jesus repeated (from the Old
Testament) that we should do. Carnal history is filled,
overflowing, with people that live: "There is a way that seems
right unto men, but the ways thereof are the ways of death."

Keith Hunt

March 2010

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