these conditions were exacted of General Lee
before he would yield his assent to the movement.
Those are the words, I believe, used by him, and in order to induce General Lee
to accept this offensive-in-strategy and defensive-in-tactics campaign, he recalled to him Napoleon
's advice to Marmont
, when, putting him in command of an invading army: “Select your ground and make your-enemy attack you.”
Very good advice to be given to an officer capable of comprehending it in the sense given; but time and circumstances in each case must decide the character of the battle, whether it shall be offensive or defensive.
It is the prerogative of the commander to decide how he will give battle, and his decision is often a good test of his military talents and capacity.
would have us believe from his conduct towards General Lee
that their understanding was in the nature of an contract, and General Lee
having, in his opinion, disregarded it, he (Longstreet
) was thereby absolved from all obligation to obey his orders.
's advice to Marmont
was good or not, and to be followed or not, at the discretion of Marmont
himself; and if he had failed to fight an offensive battle when a favorable opportunity offered, and plead as excuse that he had been advised by the Emperor
to act on the defensive, the plea would hardly have availed to keep him in command or shield him, perhaps, from more severe punishment.
When the Army of Northern Virginia marched towards the Potomac
moved on the east of the Blue Ridge
and held the passes, while Ewell
passed through the Valley
and cleared it of the Federals
,--this was his first service as corps commander and was well executed.
He then crossed the Potomac
, was soon followed by A. P. Hill
, and Longstreet
brought up the rear.
lead the advance into Pennsylvania
followed in rear.
The latter had passed through Chambersburg
with two of his divisions, and these, together with A. P. Hill
's corps, lay along the Chambersburg
road, around the village of Fayetteville
had marched towards Carlisle
had halted both Hill
for the purpose, in part, of getting information as to the position and movements of the enemy, of which he was at the time ignorant.
He could not with prudence advance further without that full knowledge of the true condition of affairs so essential in all active offensive operations, and in which delay should be avoided as far as possible.
He was therefore seriously embarrassed.
It was expected, so General