Academic journal article Military Review

THE CONFEDERATE DIRTY WAR: Arson, Bombings, Assassination, and Plots for Chemical and Germ Attacks on the Union

Academic journal article Military Review

THE CONFEDERATE DIRTY WAR: Arson, Bombings, Assassination, and Plots for Chemical and Germ Attacks on the Union

Article excerpt

THE CONFEDERATE DIRTY WAR: Arson, Bombings, Assassination, and Plots for Chemical and Germ Attacks on the Union, Jane Singer, McFarland & Company, Inc., Jefferson, NC, 2005,174 pages, $35.00.

An intriguing exploration into unconventional warfare during the U.S. Civil War, Jane Singer's The Confederale Dirty War offers insights and cautions for current operations in the Iraqi theater. As described by Singer, the diligent efforts of Confederate operatives to undermine the authority of the U.S. Government seem to have presaged the complex and ambiguous nature of contemporary guerrilla warfare.

Singer focuses her study on clandestine agents and the operations they conducted against the cities of the North and a government that so many in the South despised. She does not speculate about or judge the characters in question, but skillfully and rather succinctly provides an accurate historical record of the facts and lets those facts speak for themselves.

The book details how elements within the Confederacy, acting officially or otherwise, developed and attempted numerous plans to inflict terror and death on the Union populace and bring down the government. Singer introduces the reader to such shadowy characters as Professor Richard Sears McCulloch, who resigned a faculty chair at Columbia College to assist the Confederacy in making a chemical weapon; Luke Pryor Blackburn, a physician and, later, governor of Kentucky, who allegedly spread smallpox and yellow fever throughout the North; and Felix Grundy Stidger, a government secret service agent and counterspy, who infiltrated the highest ranks of the Sons of Liberty, a clandestine Confederate organization. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.