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Mon 2 Jul #1 
kevg
The Grumpinator


Hands up everyone who thinks British invented them in Boer War . Even though they weren't "proper" concentration camps .

Just as I thought , well you are all wrong . Sorry , while laughing .

General Weyler was the  first to use them , in Spanish-American War . 

Originally to keep the people safe from rebels , yeah right . Over 300,000 died , bit more than Boers and Africans , but why let truth get in the way of a good story .




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Mon 2 Jul #2 
Bryn middleton
Member

It's certainly true that the Spanish-American war saw the first use of the term 'concentration camp'.  They win the prize, I guess...

Sadly though, however you define a concentration camp, the answer to the question 'who invented them' the answer will be pretty much everyone, at some point, and looong before the 19th century.  Its true that military history is the simplest and easiest type of historical research to indulge in, and tends to look for simple and easy answers, but in reality all these questions have messy and often unsatisfactory answers.  Certainly not one line answers you can tell your mates down the pub.




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Mon 2 Jul #3 
kevg
The Grumpinator

Military history is fun and gruesome and teaches geography as well , what could go wrong . If you are looking for one line answers you aren't doing it right .

Did you know America won Vietnam War ? Lost the peace obviously but Communists signed a Peace Deal 2 years before they invaded again and "won" . Ever heard of Communists suing for peace when winnng ? Not a lot of Yanks know this because of left wing press . Look and ye shall find .




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Tue 3 Jul #4 
Bryn middleton
Member

I guess that's the point though, Kev.  The signing of the peace deal is pretty irrelevant, a nice little fact nugget perhaps, but when everyone agrees subsequently that the US involvement in Vietnam was A Bad Thing, to whatever extent, and that attitude effects/affects 50+years of foreign policy decisions and the psyche of the nation as a whole, the reason people don't know about the treaty is because it doesn't actually mean much.  I think crying left wing conspiracy is frankly disingenuous.  The US failed in Vietnam, according to their own metric of what success or failure would look like.  

And another thing...no, only kidding, that's it.  

Kev, what's your opinion of Kitchener?  No idea what sort of military commander he was, but damn, the guy had style!!!




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Tue 3 Jul #5 
Ruby Franks
Contributor

Anyone listening to the Reith Lectures this year? Some years they're way beyond me, sometimes I just don't like them.  So far I think this years, on war, have been very good and accessible.




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Tue 3 Jul #6 
kevg
The Grumpinator

Not everyone agrees it was a bad thing  hehehe

Yanks I have no time for , Commies even less , Aussies did well out there and NZ artillery . Fought the wrong war and still won , can't be bad .

You won't believe it but Kitchener was actually before my time !! As a figurehead he was OK , but his mindset was mid 1800's , when he was a lad you gave your life for country , not sure many would do that nowadays .




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Wed 4 Jul #7 
sally906
Contributor

Kitchener before your time?  I thought you went to school together?  Seriously though, I did know that Spain was the first to name concentration camps - there was a rebellion in Cuba and the Spanish military leader, whose name escapes me, ordered that the Cuban civilians be ‘concentrated in camps’ so they wouldn’t aid the rebels. Hundreds of thousands were incarcerated in these camps and almost a 1/3 died. USA copied the Spanish folllwed by the Brits.  But as far as rounding up people - a perceived enemy - and keeping them in one place under guard the Assyrians did it, as did the Inca and our old friends the Russians were doing it long before the Spanish named the concept - camps of concentration 




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Wed 4 Jul #8 
BBandicoot
Contributor

Man I can be dense. 

It wasn't until I read "concentrated in camps" in Sally's post that I understood the term "concentration camp". 

Thanks Sally!

You history buffs here amaze me. I can't remember yesterday, only inane song lyrics.




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