Custer(A) Essay, Research Paper
Hello and Welcome to Channel 7 news at 11:00. Today we have a Special Broadcast coming tous live from Washington D.C. We are going to join Bill Beutel in a couple of seconds. ReadyBill…..Ok we are now sending you live to Washington…..Bill: “Custer’s Last Stand”…this rings a bell in the minds of many as you will see in tonight’ssegments…”Custer Stands Again”. Tonight we will have a one on one, first time interview withGeneral George Armstrong Custer. His death stirred up bitter controversy. Well he is with ustoday for one last chance to get to the bottom of everything. Let me introduce General GeorgeArmstrongCuster. Hello General. Custer: Hello Bill, how are you doing?Bill: Fine, and how are you? You are looking very good today. I am glad you took time out ofyour busy schedule to spend some time with us and our loyal viewers today. Custer: Thank You for the compliment Bill, you are looking good yourself. I myself have been ona Nutri System Diet and have lost 15 pounds, I feel like a new man. Bill: Ok we have a very short time slot here so lets get the most out of this once in a lifetimeinterview. Are you ready?Custer: I was born ready Bill. Go Ahead, Fire!!! Wait don’t fire, I meant start asking yourquestions when your ready. All I have to do is answer them, you have the tough half in asking thequestions.Bill: Ok, here goes, Are Those Bugle Boy Jeans that you are wearing??!!??Custer: Why yes, as a matter of fact they are. I bought them just for this show. I didn’t seem tounderstand that question.Bill: I was just kidding, I was just trying to break the ice between us because we will be borderingon some very touchy matters. Ok then lets get straight to the point. What are were your personalfeelings towards the Indians?Custer: I believed then and I believe now that they were uncivilized and just couldn’t keep up withus Americans. They were also very dark due to the fact that they were squalid. They refused towear normal clothing and walked around half naked. They were inferior to us in more ways thanothers. Bill: That is a very harsh statement that you have stated. Can you back up that remark?Custer: Well of course I can, one that pops into my mind is their use of the Bow and Arrowcompared to our more advanced fire power, rifles. How could they even stand a chance againstus? For such ignorance they deserved what they received!!!!!Bill: Lets back up a little and go a little off the topic for a second, if you don’t mind, can yousummarize to us how you became what you were and are today? I would like to know and I amsure a lot of the viewers would like to know also. Custer: Ohh Boy, that’s going back a long way but give me a minute. Ok, it started a long timeago when I was a young lad. I did not work hard at my studies. I graduated at the bottom of myclass fro the U.S. Military Academy at West Point in 1861, and joined the Union Forces in theCivil War. I can honestly say that I was and still am very smart but I never accerted myself, Iguess you could say that I was lazy.Well, during the war I served with General McClellan in Virginia. In 1863 I was assigned to thecavalry and soon revealed daring and brilliance as an officer. As a result I was promoted quickly.When the war ended, I was made a lieutenant colonel and sent to Kansas to fight Indians. Afterthat I did whatever I could to help the country and I soon became General.Well that was a lot to swallow I hope that you got it all. Bill: Wow, that was very interesting. Ok, when you were ruining the lives of Indians by killingthem and herding them off their land, like cows, into unknown and uncharted reservations didn’tyou feel any pity? Did you not have a heart!!??!!Custer: I don’t feel any pity for the Indians, not one bit. None of this was necessary if they listenedto us. It was because of their ignorance that all this started. They were a backwards culture andwe were a prospering one. They were holding us back and that was counter productive so we didwhat was in the best interest of our growing nation. We gave them every opportunity to joiningwith us and listen to us but they refused.Through my many years in the military forces I learned not to give into any of my personalfeelings. Not that I had anything against what I did!!Bill: Well, you voiced your opinion very well. Ok does the date June 25, 1876 mean anything toyou?Custer: June 25, 1876… how could I not remember that date. That was the day that made mefamous. How ironic that is. Bill: What do you mean, ironic?Custer: Well all through life I wanted to be famous and looked up to by others. Well I think its
ironic that I got what I wanted and became famous, after my death at the hands of my trueenemies….The Indians. Bill: You mentioned something about aspirations. What was another aspiration that you had?Custer: Well I was planning and wanted to become President of The United States Of America. Ifeel I would have made a very good president. I would have been the best President that thiscountry had or has or even will have. I was best fit for that position. I am sure you could see thatalso. Bill: Very interesting, well, If it is not too painful can you reminisce the events of that battle, whichwe have tagged as “Custer’s Last Stand”. Custer: Ahh, “The Battle of Little Bighorn”. My troops and I were in the Montana Territory. Mytroops were starting to get restless. We were out there trying to round up the Sioux andCheyenne Indians and move them to reservations. I was under the command of General Alfred H. Terry, who was heading the expedition. General Terry ordered me to get in a position South ofwhere he suspected the Indians to be.That morning one of my scouts found an Indian village about 15 miles away. It lay in the valleyalong the Little Bighorn River. I expected to find about 1,000 warriors. But I later found out thatthey really had at least 2,000 warriors. This group, whose leaders included Crazy Horse, Gall andSitting Bull, was probably the largest gathering of Indian warriors in Western History. Bill: What did you do?Custer: Well I did not want to be found out and I didn’t have the time to wait for Gen. Terry. Instead of waiting, I divided my force into 3 small units in hopes of surrounding the enemy. Alltogether I had a little more than 600 troops. I felt that we could take the Indians easily.One unit attacked and then retreated when it saw the size of the Indian force. A second never gotinto the fight. With only 226 men, I attacked the Indians. In hand-to-hand combat all of my bandwas killed with in the time period of 1 hour. Bill: I am so sorry. I hope you didn’t mind answering that question but I am sure that our viewerswanted to know what REALLY happened. Ok now, If you had a choice would you do the samething over again and if you would what would you do different?Custer: That’s a really easy question. If I had a choice I would go back and do the same thingover again and with out one doubt in my mind. I would change a few things. One thing I would dodifferently is to WIN!!!! It wouldn’t be too hard to do. The second thing would be to do a morethorough job and kill them all!!! Every single one of them!!! Now after that, how can you tell methat I have no heart. Bill: There are two images of you…one of a HERO and another of a GLORY-SEEKER. Whichone do you see yourself as?Custer: I don’t even think that there is a problem with that answer. Yes of course I was lookingfor some glory. Who doesn’t? But that wasn’t my main goal. I wanted to help my country. I feelthat I am a very loyal citizen. I died for my country and I will do it again. I notice that a lot of myfollowers feel the same way. I am very impressed with the monument that you have made for me. I was more concerned for my country than for myself or else I would not have tried to win thatbattle. I am a Hero in my mind and not a Glory-seeker. I feel that we could have won that battle ifit had gone the way that I planned it.Bill: What do you mean, how could you have won or why do you think you lost?Custer: We should not have lost that battle. We should have never lost any battle to the inferiorIndians. I feel that if my secondary officers did as they were told and my superior officer hadhelped then we would have won the battle. Reno, one of my secondary officers, was a coward. He could have rescued me if he had not retreated. I also blame Gen. Terry and his aides for notknowing the size of the Indian force. All he wanted was to have glory, he didn’t care for anyoneexcept for himself. He didn’t love the country like I did. I felt that I was a better officer than himand should have been promoted to a higher position. For all those people who believed that Idisobeyed Terry’s orders it is true but I did it because I was there and I knew that I had no otherchoice. Well if you still want to judge me on that we so be it. Well I have to go because I have tobe at West Point in another half an hour and I have to get some groceries for the Mrs’s. Bill: Thank you for the interview, General Custer. I hope that the rest of your life be long andprosperous, if I can say that. That concludes my one on one with General Custer and back to youSue in New York. Good Night America.BibliographyReynolds, Quentin J. Custer’s Last Stand. Random House 1951.Stein, R. Conrad. The Story of the Little Bighorn. Children’s Press. Connell, Evan S. Son of the Morning Star. North Point Press. 1983.