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150 years ago today the first shot was fired at what would become the turning point of the American civil war the battle of Gettysburg.
Three days later the bloodshed and -- more than 50000.
People were dead.
The civil war raged on for two more years but experts agreed -- confederacy never recovered after the battle of Gettysburg.
Joining us now from the site of the historic batter -- General David grange a retired US army brigadier general and former commander of the first infantry division -- combat veteran.
Who -- -- Vietnam Grenada Yugoslavia and Iraq welcome general.
150 years of course have passed since Gettysburg but given your ranking your experience.
Can you help us better understand what it was like for the generals of Gettysburg general -- general need.
And -- tens of thousands of men fighting in this battle and how it influenced our American history.
Well this is a significant battle because it did change -- so war and consequently it did affect the outcome of what this nation looks like today.
It affected Abraham Lincoln.
His speech here in November the Gettysburg address and how -- nation finally came back together civil rights movements a multitude of things.
But if you look at Gettysburg it's like it's the icon of the -- war it's like Normandy it forward to in Europe it's like Iwo jima in the Pacific.
It has significant impact in a way Ford for this nation.
We -- having an interesting discussion earlier.
I think one -- Safe to say the biggest -- military histories who won the battle of Gettysburg.
For the confederacy it's referred to the high water -- mark.
The civil war but it was really just the beginning of the end for the confederacy as both sides truly were wiped out those tens thousands of deaths and casualties.
So who what.
But I agree with that.
I agree with that that they they confederacy.
Came up here for logistical reasons they came appeared to strike fear in position -- advantage against the union.
Forces in the United States of America.
And now with the failure of the battle it it did turn the -- in at the same time you have to understand -- western battlefields.
Along the Mississippi of -- it happened almost simultaneously.
So as a -- double blow for the confederacy.
And so it did it did heard generally badly.
And hit he made some poor decisions here.
The decisions of generals and battle that leadership that's employed.
Their use of reconnaissance.
How they use the ground.
Determine the outcome of this battle and he suffered immensely from it.
From a military perspective and you do have unique perspective here at least for us right now considering right now we're fighting wars were wrapping up -- it's just such a tough time.
Has been for many years actually.
In our current history.
For our armed services is.
Is there any way to explain to us civilians what it's like to be fighting for your country and edit my -- a simple question perhaps I'm not asking it.
So eloquently but -- Personally curious to know if you can shed some light on what it would have been like to been on that battlefield 100 -- years ago.
I think all battlefields of the same in the carnage and Andy and the blood.
The death of a citizen citizen soldiers and it's always -- why -- you're in a battle you're motivated.
You feel you have a reason why I don't care here in Vietnam -- -- in Gettysburg I mean you have that feeling.
Afterwards you start to ever think back was it worth it why did we lose lives what was the outcome.
Do we quit.
That's affects all soldiers past and president and don't into the future there's things that never change and battle in this things that -- change.
Conference's leadership never changes good leaders win.
Leaders that can't read the battlefield understand the terrain.
Have good reconnaissance.
And understand who's on your left your right what may happen over the next ridge line if you don't have that you lose.
-- things that do change this technology.
The different types of weaponry communications medical support logistics they change constantly.
But the principles of leadership good reconnaissance.
And how you -- -- your your men and equipment the right place -- -- right time never changes.
So there Gettysburg battlefield park it is -- national treasure but obviously with sequester cuts and so many broader budget issues -- countries facing today.
Mike in a little bit of jeopardy what do you want to see done in general and tell me how necessary it is to preserve this landmark.
Well that's that that's a great question and and I'll tell you at Gettysburg is it as a terrific example public.
That allows what's happening these three days July 1 through the third at Gettysburg.
Without that partnership it would not happen.
With -- frustration with other budget cuts it's very difficult for the park service to do this by itself.
But because the park service in this case with Gettysburg.
Partnership with the Gettysburg foundation.
With the friends of Gettysburg they're allowed to use -- private sector support both morally and with the will of giving.
In order to do.
That to improve the park to understand the history to have the educational programs so without the public private partnership I'm not -- how you could do the scoreboard in the in the future and this is a great example of that.
And it's very important to understand what this battlefield did to the outcome of the nation absolutely and the level we learn from that yes.
General David grange thank you for your time is -- To mark this my pleasure an important milestone for our country as sad as it is thank you so much.
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