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A rumor, which we fear is of that description usually marked as "too good to be true, " has been in circulation ever since the commencement of the Christmas holidays, to the effect that the President has appointed General Lee generalissimo of the land and naval forces of the Confederacy, with all the powers appertaining to that exalted office. It was alluded to, in very pointed terms, by two of the morning papers yesterday otherwise, we should have forborne to mention it. Time, we suppose, will reveal the truth with regard to this report. No act which the President could perform would have so great an effect in cheering and stimulating the country, at this moment, when, above all others that have occurred, it requires cheering and stimulant. Nor do we believe that any other act of his, apart from the moral effect, could so powerfully aid in the prosecution of the war. General Lee is, beyond all question, the greatest of living captains. There is no other, indeed, whose deeds admit of the slightest comparison. But apart from this, he possesses a weight of character, and an estimation with the multitude, such as no other man but one ever possessed in this country, and that other was Washington. The whole people look up to him with a respect amounting to reverence, and a belief in his capacity almost superstitious. They are unwilling to believe, and cannot be taught to believe, that anything he undertakes will fail — that any course he recommends can be wrong — that any cause he may adopt can fail. Whatever might be the movements of our armies, were General Lee the head of them all, they would be received with confidence alike by soldiers and people. Besides, General Lee is the principal figure in the designs of the enemy. All their aim, and all their hope, is to destroy him and his army. They are the centre against which he is combining all the scattered fragments of his armies.--Every blow that has been struck by Thomas, Sherman and Sheridan, has for its object the destruction of Lee and his army. The force thus used against him is concentrated in the hands of a single man, who moves it at his will; while ours is disseminated over a space as wide as the Confederacy itself, and is lodged in many different hands. Under these circumstances, there being no unity of command, General Lee is placed in a most disadvantageous position. It is but just to give him all the advantages in the power of the Government to bestow, since he has to bear the brunt of the enemy's entire force. It is hardly worth while to detail the enormous advantages which a general possesses when he is the master and director of all subordinate movements. He can then form a single plan and make all the movements of the different corps conform to that plan. Whereas, when a number of generals act independently, they all have different objects, and can seldom be made to work together for the accomplishment of one. He who is the chief in responsibility should not only have the power to order movements, but he should have the power to appoint the agents who are to execute the subordinate parts of his plan. In the latter year of his command, Washington was, in point of fact, a Dictator. After the unfortunate expedition of Gates to South Carolina, Congress called on him to appoint a general. It had exhausted itself, and had wrought nothing but mischief. Washington appointed Green, and from that day took the war pretty much into his own hands. In twelve months after he had done so, Cornwallis surrendered, and Independence was secured. We are told that General Lee is consulted now about all military matters. That will not do. The President, no doubt, designs well, and acts conscientiously. But nobody except the commander in the field can properly exercise such powers as have become essentially necessary to be exercised.
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