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[107] than ten thousand. Johnston, Hardee and A. P. Stewart all claim that the fighting spirit of the army was not impaired by the retreat, and cite the stubborn fights before Atlanta and at Franklin as proof of it. His ultimate plan was to fight and crush Sherman, far from his base in the interior, on the first favorable opportunity. He pertinently observes, that like himself, Lee was falling back before Grant in Virginia, yet constantly gaining in military renown, and further, that Lee, Bragg and Pemberton were forgiven faults for which he was condemned.

He points with telling force to the fact that a trial of the cyclone policy of offence against the Federals was immediately fatal to the objects of the campaign and of the war, and expresses the opinion that if either Hardee or Stewart had been placed in command, instead of Hood, Atlanta would have been saved. Finally, in general, he holds that it was a lack of statesmanship, and not military resources or leadership to which the failure of the South is to be ascribed. It was not the greater population and resources of the North that conquered. Johnston expresses the opinion that at first the Southern was a more effective soldier than the man of the North by reason of his experience from youth with firearms and natural aptitude for the military life. Yet in the very earliest battles these ‘inexperienced’ Northern soldiers inflicted the greatest loss on their enemy that occurred during the war on either side.

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