Gen. Scott's programme — his opposition to the advance on Richmond — his resentment towards that city.
The infamous editor of the New York Times
--appropriately styled by the Tribune
the "little villain"--has become the champion of General Scott
. He defends him against the party who clamored for the march to Richmond
, led on by General Greeley
, and to which the President
In vindication of Gen. Scott
, of the Times,
gives the substance of a conversation at the General
's table, in presence of his Aids and a "single guest," (the "little villain" himself, we suppose.) This conversation, he says, took place on Tuesday, before the battle at Stone Bridge
Taken in connection with the impassioned remark of the aged Fuss and Feathers Chieftain before the President
, as reported by Richardson
, of Illinois
, it would appear that he was overruled in the march to Manassas
; but on pretty good authority it is stated that he declared, on the forenoon of the 21st, the most perfect conviction that the Federalists would be victorious in the battle then raging.
If the matter had been left to him, (General Scott
,) he said, he would have commenced by a perfect blockade of every Southern port on the Atlantic
and the Gulf
Then he would have collected a large force at the Capital
for defensive purposes, and another large one on the Mississippi
for offensive operations.
The summer months, during which it is madness to take troops south of St. Louis
, should have been devoted to tactical instruction; and with the first frosts of autumn he would have taken a column of 80,000 well disciplined troops down the Mississippi
, and taken every important point on that river.
New Orleans included.
It could have been done, he said, with greater ease, with less loss of life, and with far more important results than would attend the marching of an army to Richmond.
At eight points the river would probably have been defended, and eight battles would have been necessary; but, in every one of them success could have been made certain for us. The Mississippi and the Atlantic
once ours, the Southern States
would have been compelled, by the natural and inevitable pressure of events, to seek, by a return to the Union
, escape from the ruin that would speedily overwhelm them out of it. "This," said he, "was my plan.
But I am only a subordinate.
It is my business to give advice when it is asked, and to obey orders when they are given.
I shall do it.
There are gentlemen in the Cabinet
who know much more about war than I do, and who have far greater influence than I have in determining the plan of the campaign.
There never was a more just and upright man than the President
-- never one who desired more sincerely to promote the best interest of the country.
But there are men among his advisers who consult their own resentments far more than the dictates of wisdom and experience, and these men will probably decide the plan of the campaign.
I shall do, or attempt, whatever I am ordered to do; but they must not hold me responsible.
If I am ordered to go to Richmond
, I shall endeavor to do it. But I know perfectly well that they have no conception of the difficulties we shall encounter.
I know the country — how admirably adapted it is to defence, and how resolutely and obstinately it will be defended.
I would like nothing better than to take Richmond
— now that it has been disgraced by becoming the Capital
of the rebel Confederacy, I feel a resentment towards it, and should like nothing better than to scatter its Congress to the winds.
But I have lived long enough to know that human resentment is a very bad foundation for a public policy; and these gentlemen will live long enough to learn it also.
I shall do what I am ordered.
I shall fight when and where I am commanded.
But if I am compelled to fight before I am ready, they shall not hold me responsible.
These gentlemen must take the responsibility of their acts, as I am willing to take that of mine.
But they must not throw their
responsibility on my shoulders."