The roads in that region are passable at all periods of the year. The country now alluded to is much more favorable for offensive operations than that in front of Washington (which is very unfavorable),--much more level, more cleared land, the woods less dense, the soil more sandy, and the spring some two or three weeks earlier. A movement in force on that line obliges the enemy to abandon his intrenched position at Manassas in order to hasten to cover Richmond and Norfolk. He must do this; for, should he permit us to occupy Richmond, his destruction can be averted only by entirely defeating us in a battle in which he must be the assailant. This movement, if successful, gives us the capital, the communications, the supplies,
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