The Battle of New Orleans- II

Lead: On December 24, 1814, the Treaty of Ghent was signed in Belgium. The treaty ended the war of 1812 and jump-started the political career of Andrew Jackson.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: The greatest American victory, though, the Battle of New Orleans, which was fought on January 8, 1815, occurred fifteen days after the treaty of peace was signed. Both the United States and Great Britain were eager for peace after negotiations had gone on for several months with little progress, and the war seemed to draw to a stalemate. The treaty ended the fighting and pretty much restored the pre-war status quo with few policy changes, territorial gains or concessions from either side. John Quincy Adams, a chief negotiator for the United States, later recorded, “I hoped it would be the last treaty of peace between Great Britain and the United States.” 

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The Battle of New Orleans- I

Lead: The biggest American victory of the War of 1812 was won after the war was over. The Battle of New Orleans put an exclamation point on the conflict days after a peace treaty brought hostilities to a conclusion.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: In Fall 1814, a large British fleet left Jamaica. Its goal: gain control of access to the Mississippi River. To accomplish this, the Brits needed to assault and take the City of New Orleans located on the decisive bend in the great river not far from its mouth.

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Wilhelm’s Great Fleet – III

Lead: Having set out to build a large battle fleet, in the early 1900s Kaiser Wilhelm II and his German advisors sparked a naval construction race that helped bring the world to war.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: In the late 1800s the still unchallenged dominant world power was Great Britain. Its empire covered a quarter of the globe, but this empire was a sea empire made possible by the greatest navy the world had known to that time. This navy provided security for international commerce, protected the imperial lifeline to the Far East and shielded the home islands from invasion. When in the 1890s the German Emperor and his ministers set out to build a Navy to rival his British cousins, without realizing it, they threatened the very survival of Britain.

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Wilhelm’s Great Fleet – II

Lead: Already wielding dominant military power in late 19th century continental Europe, German leaders, especially Kaiser Wilhelm II, began to plan for global power projected by a great battle fleet.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: In 1890 the President of the U.S. Naval War College, Captain Alfred Thayer Mahan, published The Influence of Sea Power in History, 1660-1783. In this volume and its sequel he made two arguments. First, he implied that dominant seapower from the Romans to the British made for strategic economic, political and military supremacy. Secondly, he claimed such power only could be achieved with a heavily armed battle fleet. One of Mahan’s most enthusiastic students was the young emperor of Germany, Wilhelm II. His fascination with naval power, especially British naval power, was fired when he spent many youthful summers visiting his grandmother, Queen Victoria, at her summer home, Osborne, on the Solent near the great Portsmouth Naval Base in the south of England. Wilhelm’s began to dream of a German Navy to rival that of his British cousins.

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Wilhelm’s Great Fleet – I

Lead: Of the many complex causes of the Great War, none was more catalytic than the enigmatic, insecure, brilliant yet erratic Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: As the nineteenth century drew to a close the great powers of continental Europe were coming to grips with growing popular political aspirations. Mass democracy taking its inspiration from the French Revolution, from the writings of liberals and socialists and from the experience of the North American colossus was forcing the ruling dynasties and their attending aristocrats to surrender an ever-growing  portion of their power. Some leaders, such as German Chancellor Otto von Bismarck, understood how to manipulate this new force. Others, such as the young Kaiser were soon captured by it.

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Mexico: Mexican-American War 1846-1848

Lead: Beginning in April 1846, the United States, the clear aggressor, and Mexico fought a war over territory. The result was the largest U.S. expansion since the Louisiana Purchase.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: By the 1840s the United States and Mexico had achieved their independence, both by colonial wars from their European founders. Mexico, however, was in debt, had deep class-based social divisions, and suffered acute political instability. Thus, it was difficult for Mexican leaders to govern and populate the huge territory recently won from the Spanish in present day California and the southwestern United States. On the other side of the border, ambitious Americans, hungry for land and trade in the Pacific rim, were migrating westward in increasing numbers. 

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Building of Berlin Wall II

Lead: Surrounded by East Germany and its citizens sometimes subjected to hostile restrictions on travel, West Berlin proved itself a shining example of the virtues of political and economic freedom. It had to be stopped.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts. 

Content: By 1960 East Germany was in trouble. Its population was restless under communist repression, its economy was dependent on Soviet aid, and suffered under the usual inefficiencies of a Marxist command structure. Its population was declining. Thousands were exercising the opportunity of free access to West Berlin to escape to the West. 200,000 in the first seven months of 1961 alone walked across the various allied checkpoints in West Berlin and never looked back. East Germany could not survive this continued exodus.

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Building of Berlin Wall I

Lead: At the height of the Cold War, with tensions at a fever pitch, the Soviet Union and its East German client state, in an act of self-preservation, built a wall around West Berlin.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: The Cold War lasted from 1946 until the collapse of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s. For much of that time, the city of West Berlin was the cockpit of low-grade super power rivalry. In the summer of 1961, events in Berlin threatened to spark a much wider conflict.

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