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American History, and the lies we're taught

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posted on Feb, 13 2006 @ 05:48 PM

I agree with almost all of what you posted, I would differ only in respect to errors in historical research, these aren't always reflective of a bias, or lies, but an honest factual error. Happens all the time, and most historians with any sort of ethics will correct it.

Thats not to say there aren't liars out there, Willis Corto comes to mind right off the bat. Many others, as well. As readers of history, we must use multiple sources, and viewpoints (even if we disagree violently with them...Mr. Corto is a particular demon of mine), because you can find a nugget of valuable information in the strangest places.

All that rambling just to say I agree with you. No one line post warnings today.

posted on Feb, 13 2006 @ 07:21 PM
There is alot of truth in the statement history is written by the winners also no doubt there is always going to be a bias in historical accounts. Why, because they are written by people who have emotions and feelings which will be reflected in their writings. What we have to do is teach our children and indeed ourselves to check many different sources and reach our own conclusions.

posted on Feb, 14 2006 @ 02:02 AM
'History is the lie agreed upon.' Henry Ford
Couldn't agree more, and Mr. Ford is someone I dislike.
The number of spun events in US history is stunning.
ie: Pearl Harbour
Scalping in the old west.
the Communist Revolution
the founding of the Federal Reserve
the missile accuracy in Desert Storm
TWA 800
etc., etc.

posted on Feb, 15 2006 @ 06:27 PM
There are many things, some of which are being properly reformed in present times.

For example, the story of Washington chopping down the cherry tree and then saying "I cannot tell a lie." was made up by admirers afer he died. Yet my history books reported that event as fact.

Admirers of Washington posthumously circulated an apocryphal story about his honesty as a child. In the story, he wanted to try out a new axe, so he chopped down his father's cherry tree; when questioned by his father, he gave the famous non-quotation: "I cannot tell a lie. It was I who chopped down the cherry tree.” The story first appeared in 1800 in a children's book (titled "Life of Washington") by Parson Mason Weems, who had been rector of the Mount Vernon parish.

Then there is the whole thing with Leifr Eiríksson discovering America first, which was never covered in my history books. And, I read somewhere, though I don't recall where, when the President declared Leif Erikson Day, they modified his name from what it really was - Leifr Eiríksson - to Leif Erikson to make it more accessable.

I used to have a whole list of these somewhere, as I was working on an plan for a set of history books that includes all the unincluded things with various alternate points of view on certain events that are seen differently by different people.

posted on Feb, 24 2006 @ 01:22 AM
I think they hide the "negative" Facts of History to protect the children.

As A Child, I remember All the "good" Bible stories. I was Taught.

Even Then, I was asinine And asked Questions like. "Did all the Kids at Jericho Die?" Of Course, I would get a Answer like "Just the Evil Adults."

So I read it myself. And found out that All of Jericho dies except a "harlot" and her household. (Including Babies and Donkies).

I think Adults "like to white lie" To avoid having to answer the Hard questions of Life. They Can't Answer them, And therefore they just pretend they Don't Exist.

Side Note:

A Lot of the president's Were Bigots. But we also have to remember, They like the Ancient Israelites. Lived in that time Frame, Not ours. For them, That sort of Behavior was Common and proper. For Us, its "pure" ignorance\Evil.

So for exp. To Columbus, Its ok To enslave None "soul Bearing" Animals. For Anybody Not a" white land owner" was considered a Animal. And was treated as such.

And Yes, Today We would like to go Back. And Teach Columbus the error of his ways. But I am sure somebody in the 23rd Century Will like to do the Same with Us.

And it takes time to explain ancient customs. So we Gloss over History, And make a PC version for today's Youth. And unless a Kid studies For himself\herself. They will become societies Automation‘. Clueless youth who Follow What the "culture" teaches Them.

posted on Feb, 24 2006 @ 11:21 AM
we dont have to wait until the 23 century, its starting now

posted on Feb, 26 2006 @ 07:49 PM
Howard Zinn, A People's History of the United States is an incredivle book! You see, the books in school teach history from the victors view, IE America's, APHOTUS by Howard Zinn teaches it from the losers side, IE Indians, Blacks, Irish, so forth.

Amazing what one can learn, that book is what started me on the truth, not the Rich White Man's version, but the truth.

posted on Feb, 26 2006 @ 10:50 PM
'A Lot of the president's Were Bigots. But we also have to remember, They like the Ancient Israelites. Lived in that time Frame, Not ours. For them, 'That sort of Behavior was Common and proper. For Us, its "pure" ignorance\Evil.
So for exp. To Columbus, Its ok To enslave None "soul Bearing" Animals. For Anybody Not a" white land owner" was considered a Animal. And was treated as such.
And Yes, Today We would like to go Back. And Teach Columbus the error of his ways. But I am sure somebody in the 23rd Century Will like to do the Same with Us.' msnevil

I agree, I know I would like to go all the way back to before 1960 here in Canada, because back in those ancient times the pure evil of legally sanctioned bigotry was officially ended. In 1960, Canada declared that we had generously decided to recognize that First Nations were actually 'persons' too, and therefore could vote too. Of course, in WWII, we had no problem accepting them volunteering to die for our freedom, though they were not 'persons'.

posted on Mar, 14 2006 @ 03:26 AM
Also our history books were written by peeps that could write history anyway they wanted and said it was correct...and then publish it too all our schools. Teachers automatically assume if its in the book then it happened.

posted on Mar, 14 2006 @ 01:30 PM
Another thing changed/not the truth.

Civil War was about the South breaking away, not us having slaves. When Lincoln freed the slaves it was a political move, not to free the slaves, as the EP only applied to slaves in non-Union states. So love to hear republicans say "We don't hate darkies, we freed them!" when of course they did nothing. Also...

The Declaration of Ind. DID NOTHING!!!!! It wasn't until after the war that it meant anything. If we had lost it would of been used as toilet paper. Yet so many people think we were a new nation once it was signed or something, when of course we weren't, it just showed intent to leave England.

Grant was Not a Good person, he drank almost as badly as Bush does, but he was a darn good general with even better troops, why Lincoln defended Grant when he was criticized as being a drunk. he was, but Lincoln knew he could lead troops, and in a war it doesn't matter if you are an opium addict who likes the horses a little to much as long as you can lead troops and win battles.

Lee wasn't a racist bigot or anything, he lead the CSA armies because Virginia was part of the CSA, if Virginia had stayed in the Union Lee would have lead the Union forces. He was loyal to his state, not whatever country it belonged to.

Hemp/Pot was made illegal not because it is 'bad', but because paper industries had close ties to the Whitehouse at the time it was banned. Much like how Oil COmpanies have their own office in the Whitehouse during Bush's administration. Hemp can be used to make cars, clothes, fuel, bats, almost anything! And Marijuanna is no worse then cigarettes or alcohol, as alcohol and niccotine are the gateway drugs, not Weed.

US granted clemency to thousands of NAZIs because they were scientists, who we used to make new weapons and other technology.

The Indians were terrorists, by todays definition. We invaded their country, they fought back, we used advanced weaponry to slaughter them, to committ a genocide that would make Hitler proud. They were not the bad guys, they made deals and treaties that we broke every time for Manifest Destiny.

We bought land from France that didn't belong to them, but to the Indians. But that didn't stop the genocide. It would be like buying Canada from Russia, they don't own it, but afterwards we invade and slaughter the Canadians because we had a reciept saying we bought their land from someone who didn't own it.

Crack, Opium, Cocaine, Heroine, and Ketchup are miracle cures, at one point in history. Oh so was Coca Cola...

Diamonds are not rare! There is literally tons of them in warehouses, the market is controlled so you have to choose between a car and an engagement ring instead of a Big Mac and a diamond the size of your fist.

The blacks aren't innocent! They were sold to whitey by other blacks! SO before you go make reparations, find out if they were the seller or the sold black first.

Irish Americans were the new slaves, they were treated like animals, or blacks, and faced conditions just as bad, since they were paid but just enough to live for another week, to work another week.

Mexico lost a War over Texas, they did not own Texas when America won the Mexican American War, Texas was it's own nation, the Lone Star Nation, until it joined Aemrica and became the Lone Star State, so any Mexican crossing it's border illegally can't say we stole the land from them since Texas had broken away from Mexico before it joined the USA.

The second nuclear weapon used on Japan was not the only one to be used, a third one was headed for another city but was shot down, and it wasn't because Japan wouldn't surrender it was to show we had the biggest bomb and we weren't afraid to use them.

Pearl Harbor was the FDR equivalent of Bush's 9/11. They knew it was coming, they had the information, but they let it happen. Although it was so they could attack NAZI Germany, something the Republicans had been supporting with millions of dollars, and Bush did it so he could start his war for oil, but still FDR let Americans die when he could have stopped it, or at least warned someone.

I'll post more later, dog needs to go to the bathroom.

posted on Apr, 27 2006 @ 06:55 AM
My History teacher last year told us about some of the lies we are taught. He also told us about a book we could read to learn more about them. I think this is wrong to do to kids. When we are littke we are tought one thing and then the next thing you know your teacher is telling you another thing at dictates the other.
If we are getting lied to in school were are we suppose to find out the trueth? We can not find it on the web becuase any person can have a web page and your parents are just a guilty about lieing to us as our teahcers.

posted on Apr, 27 2006 @ 08:10 AM
History will always be embellished,exaggerated by the nation/ state/government that has won/created or conquered.The reality of any situation can only be discerned by the commoners witnessing the event and putting ink to paper.As this was nearly impossible prior to 1800 (as the common person was not educated) we have to take these accounts of our history on face value.
Still,there is enough information in different types of media (from the beginning of the renaissance) that can be utilised to give a fairly good account of actual events.Prior to that though we are heading into the realms of conjecture tantalised by snippets of actuality.
It is up to us modern forward thinking humans to ensure that our children who are given incorrect or incomplete facts are pointed to various areas of information that are available so they can try to discern the reality.

posted on Jun, 5 2006 @ 03:02 AM
People, please state ONE FACT taught in American History books which has been totally disproved. Second, please prove it was in fact a lie, and not simply an error.

OK, one simple example that is not only taught incorrectly in the schools, but even adults old enough to have been a witness to this history get it wrong!

--> according to popular USA culture, and also K-12 texts, what single country was primarily responsible for defeating Nazi Germany?

answer in textbooks, and accepted by the populace at large: the USA of course.

reality: USSR killed over 10X as many Germans, and also sacrificed something like 20X as many of their soldiers and citizens. By any reasonable measure, the Soviets beat the Germans, while we flew a bunch of bombing missions and grabbed half of Europe. But the Soviets did all of the very necessary, and decisive killing. But just try and find any mention of it in either school books or popular culture, OTHER than one bizarre instance; the common 'Eastern Front' jokes in "Hogan's Heroes"

I'm just tossing out guesstimates as far as the numbers are concerned, as I don't have time to research what was intended to be a quick response to the prior post. But I believe that the USA lost something like 2500 soliders on D-Day; the most it lost on any single day in the European theatre. The Soviets AVERAGED something like 4,000 dead every day for four years!! The German death toll was similar: whatever the highest single total for US caused German casualties, the Soviets averaged more German dead EVERY day for years. We were but a footnote to the war in Europe. That rates as a lie to me.

posted on Jun, 5 2006 @ 04:12 AM

Originally posted by ConfederacyOfUnity
Also our history books were written by peeps that could write history anyway they wanted and said it was correct...and then publish it too all our schools. Teachers automatically assume if its in the book then it happened.

The portrayal of the existing cultures, from whom the founding fathers of the USA heard definitions of human individual rights just like the ones in the constitution. The nations already here were shown as being primitive, when they were very highly developed, sustainable, fair and just.
The worst case of spin was to teach everyone that scalping was started by the native americans, when it was not. They did it in retaliation when it was done to them by the invaders as both an insult and means of population reduction (genocide).
The savages involved in the old west were the victors, contrary to the official teachings.

posted on Jun, 5 2006 @ 04:39 AM
History is complicated. It's not black and white, it's filled with all the various shades of greys that exist in normal life. If you want to teach it all you can do is paint broad brush strokes and then fill in the gaps later, or read a lot. And sometimes politics does come into it. One of the best history books of recent years was "Berlin - the Downfall" by Anthony Beevor. Great book, but a hell of a depressing read because of the lack of redeeming features in the personalities involved. And when Berlin fell it was in a whelter of blood and rape. But when the book came out the Russian ambassador wrote to almost every paper in the UK to say that the stories of mass rape by Russian soldiers of German women were nothing more than lies - which was also the old Soviet viewpoint. How could Beevor slander the brave soldiers of the Red Army? The fact that the stories were true was besides the way.
What enrages me is shoddy research as well. I was recently reading a narrative history of WW2 by an american author. The name escapes me, I'll have to look it up. Three things annoyed me. One, the coverage of the Battle of Britain, the key moment in the start of the war, was skimpy. Second, it said that El Alamein was an unncessary battle due to the proximity of Operation Torch - and failed to mention the fact that we had to beat Rommel quickly to save Malta, which was starving. And third, it mentioned the fact that US forces held firm at Salerno. It was a British-American force at Salerno. Yes, all three small things, but history is too important to be broad-brushed and trivialised down, or to allow national prejudice, petty politics and inconvenient facts to get in the way.

[edit on 5-6-2006 by Darkmind]

posted on Jun, 28 2006 @ 06:49 AM
Dear Subway,

If I may point out, your point that you make , and very well by the way, does exactly what you accuse the text books of doing.
Russia was supplied by the UK (ships in convoy etc) to Murmansk with goods and weapons from the USA. The so called "Arctic Convoys".

Sailing all the way from the USA was a none starter so the supplies were staged through The UK. Many many thousands of UK sailors died in this battle to supply Russia during the fighting to which you refer. Had the battle of Britain been lost by the UK then I doubt that the outcome of the war would have been the same.
Without the work done at Bletchly Park code breaking centre during the war, using Collosus the worlds first computer !! ( Can be seen at the National Computing Centre in Manchester btw)The battle of the Atlantic would not have been won so easily.
I am using these two items to demonstrate that the war was won by allied efforts, to say that "primarily one nation did more died more or killed more" is to reduce the struggle to a numbers game. It is invalid for the text books to suggest the USA was Primarily responsible for wining the war and equally invalid to suggest that the Russian did so.
Each country involved struggled and sacrificed a great deal to ensure an allied victory, tiny moments in time have disproportionate impact. It is not just who made the most tanks and aircraft and who killed who. This explanation of cooperation I think is the province of the History texts, to show the futility of fighting in the first place, and secondly to not indulge in a mine is bigger than yours competition after the event.
My history is different to yours, 1776 means something different in the UK. 1812 is also reported differently here than in the US for example. I think the study of history texts is essential to the future. Motivation and the nuances of small events should be explored. The problem with collecting statistics and commenting on them is that it takes the subject out of context, which is essential to a reasonable study of our collective histories.
I was not trying to be too critical I think you made a very good point, I was trying to take your idea and expand a little. I hope you don't mind.

posted on Jun, 29 2006 @ 11:50 AM
For those who want a specific example of a lie we are all taught in High School history classes, take the example of the Gulf of Tonkin Incedent, which lead out country into the Vietnam War.

The official line, and the one still taught in high school classrooms to this day, is that the Vietnamese fired on U.S. naval ships, thus precipitating our invasion of their country.

It turns out that's not what happened. We were never fired on. It was a lie, used to justify our military presense in Asia where we were concerned abou tthe spread of Communism. Then secretary of Defense Robert McNamara talks about the incident in the 2003 Erril Morris documentary entitled "The Fog of War: Eleven Lessons from the Life of Robert S. McNamara"

You can also read the NSA's official report on the incedent that was declassified in 2005, which clearly states that U.S. naval ships were never fired upon.

Offical NSA Website

And yet, in schools, the official line of "We were attacked first" is still hammered into the heads of America's youth.

posted on Jun, 29 2006 @ 12:10 PM
Yes, IMO it is political correctness that is also a danger to truth in textbooks.

Textbooks are now being "sanitized" - having anything deemed not politically correct removed. For example, try to find a reference to Mount Rushmore in one of today's textbooks. You most likely won't because only white men are represented on the monument.

Also, most of this country's textbooks come from an approval process in either Texas or California - the other states choose from the books approved in those two states. So, there goes the chances of finding much diversity (hate that word) of opinion.

posted on Jun, 29 2006 @ 01:18 PM
Not just textbooks.. The mass media bubble also seems to show in all American war films. Before I begin, I would like to state this is not a cheap swipe at the U.S. It can just be quite annoying!

U571 -

The Enigma codes had first been broken by the Poles in 1932, and this knowledge was passed over to the British and French in 1939. An Enigma machine and associated documents containing key material were first recovered from a U-boat in May 1941 — before the United States' entry into World War II — by the British who captured U-110. The British also captured material from U-559 in 1942. The U.S. Navy did seize German Naval Enigma material in June 1944 when it captured U-505 (the U.S. Navy's first capture of an enemy vessel at sea in 129 years).

The film caused irritation in Britain. The families of Royal Navy Lieutenant Tony Fasson and Able Seaman Colin Grazier, who lost their lives while retrieving the Enigma from U559, were particularly upset. Critics also argued that U-571 failed to portray history correctly because, in total, there were some 15 captures of Naval Enigma material during World War II, of which the Americans and Canadians each carried out one (U-505 and U-774, respectively), while the British performed the rest. While the British captures from submarines and weather trawlers provided critical information for breaking Enigma, by the time of the American and Canadian captures, the Allies were reading Naval Enigma routinely

The Patriot-

The film has been heavily criticized for its historical inaccuracies, including the invention or exaggeration of British atrocities. Most criticized was a scene depicting the torching of a church containing a town's inhabitants, which was inspired by a WWII Nazi war crime committed at Oradour-sur-Glane. Although it went generally unnoticed by casual audiences, historians also criticized the depiction of American-owned slaves being freed to serve in the Continental Army. It was actually the Dunmore Proclamation made by the British Army which first announced conditional freedom to slaves who joined them, a fact which is acknowledge by the film when Col. Tavington tells blacks working for Martin that all slaves who fight for "The Crown" will be granted their freedom upon an English victory. The new American government would maintain legalized chattel slavery (primarily of blacks) until the Emancipation Proclamation during the American Civil War.

Braveheart - well there are too many myths involved in the film.. Good 'ol Wiki!

Battle of the Bulge -

The second being the weather greatly improved, which allowed the previously grounded (due to fog & snow) Allied air forces to attack anything that moved on the ground, and destroy or immobilize it, which they did to great effect. And it fails to mention the British Army's attacks to take pressure off the Americans and the fact that the RAF played a crucial role in destroying the German Panzers that were stranded on the roadside,with no petrol.

I'm sure many more films represent the U.S as being heros fighting for good and honour and purely winning the war unassisted.. the truth however seems quite buried. I know I may attract critiscism and sorry to use the sterotype but i'm sure a slack-jawed yank will quite happily add to a bubble of hysteria that America is the best and won WW2 and the like by rewriting history in films.

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