Fox News anchor Brian Kilmeade hosts the latest video from Prager University, "America's 2nd War of Independence" which discusses the often misunderstood and sometime forgotten War of 1812.
“The United States had to fight not one, but two wars for its independence," Kilmeade says. "The first, of course, was the Revolutionary War. Can you name the second? It was the War of 1812. Now, both wars were against the British. And in both cases, the Americans should have lost.”
He adds, “The Revolutionary War is very much celebrated in American history. The second one has all but been forgotten. But had it been lost, America’s history would have been much, much different.”
Kilmeade discusses how between the years 1807 and 1812, the British Empire was capturing as many as 5,000 American sailors and forcing them to serve the Crown.
Under the direction of then-President James Madison, Congress declared war on England on June 18, 1812. America had much to fear. Britain had a large navy, battle-tested troops, and experienced military leaders at the command. America had none of those things.
The British invaded the nation and soon burned down the capital city of Washington, D.C. and setting their eyes on New Orleans. If the British controlled the port city, they could put a check on American expansion into the West. They sent over 10,000 men and 60 naval ships to take the city.
Kilmeade says, “And what could the Americans offer by way of defense? Enter Andrew Jackson, one of the most remarkable figures in American history.”
Jackson was born in 1767 in the territories of the Carolinas, who had seen the brutality of the British during the War of Independence. His mother and brothers died in the war and he, himself, had received a permanent scar by a British officer who slashed him.
He had served in Tennessee as a lawyer, as the Congressman-at-Large, a Senator, and despite having no formal military training, he was elected to the rank of major general of the state’s militia.
He had led many successful campaigns in the region, but he knew the British were far superior a foe, with his forces less than half of the large army.
Kilmeade explains furthers, “But for all their deficiencies, Jackson’s men had three talents he fully exploited: they knew the terrain, they knew how to dig, and they knew how to shoot.”
“The Battle of New Orleans began in earnest at dawn January 8, 1815. The overconfident British had no idea what they were in for. Wading through the mud of Louisiana swamps and thwarted by Jackson’s hastily constructed, but formidable, ramparts, one British charge after another was cut down by deadly accurate American artillery and rifle fire.”
Kilmeade emphasized, “When it was over, it amounted to the worst defeat in British military history.”
He adds, “The War of 1812, America’s second war of independence, began badly and only got worse. But it ended with one of the greatest victories in American military history.”
You can watch the video below: