In a letter sent to members of the National Ranger Memorial Foundation, Brigadier General(R) Joseph Stringham, chairman of the foundation, detailed how senior leadership on Fort Benning had ordered the removal of specific names from the Ranger Memorial in compliance with a law passed by Congress to remove the names of members of the Confederacy from military installations.
The letter states, “these names are Col John S Mosby 1992 RHOF, Mosby memorial paver, Quantrill memorial paver, George Bowman memorial paver with reference to BG Morgan and Jackson Bowman paver with reference to BG Morgan.” Stringham claims these efforts are “wrapped in the legal promulgation of a law passed by the Pelosi 117th Congress.”
John S Mosby was a confederate battalion commander who led the 43rd Battalion, known as Mosby’s Rangers. His Wikipedia page states that he became a Republican and worked as an attorney following the war, even supporting Ulysses S. Grant, his former enemy commander. He also served as a consul to Hong Kong and in the US Department of Justice. Mosby clearly had a legacy which extended far beyond the four years he served in the Civil War, like many of his peers who returned to a normal life beyond the war.
Stringham’s letter makes it very clear throughout that he is not the architect of this decision, rather Colonel Mahle, the Ft. Benning Garrison Commander.
Stringham states, “the injustice to the name of John S Mosby and his descendants is extraordinary and thoughtless. Notwithstanding his extraordinary combat record, Ambassador Mosby, a staunch anti-slavery activist, was appointed by President Grant as US Ambassador to China later in his distinguished service to our Nation.” Stringham goes on to detail how the foundation made the changes while limiting the visible damage to the monument. The pavers had been removed, and the Mosby inscription had “been appropriately covered so as not to deface the other names accompanied on the same tablet.”
Defacing a memorial to satisfy historical revisionists is a page straight from the playbook from Mao’s Cultural Revolution. In an article from The Guardian, Ian Johnson writes, “the country’s rulers do not just suppress history, they recreate it to serve the present. They know that, in a communist state, change often starts when the past is challenged.” This is what we’re seeing at work, and the framers of this effort know the military is the last stronghold they need to conquer to implement their authoritarian agenda. as Stringham writes in the closing of his letter, “removing bricks and etching out names will not promote peace within our nation nor will renaming installations and covering headstones heal us or ensure equality.” Right you are, General, but the enemies of our nation bringing this assault on every institution we hold sacred don’t want peace.