The British Petroleum Oil Spill and Memorial Day

Memorial Day actually springs from the traditions which came out of the Civil War, War Between the States, War of Northern Aggression, War to Save the Union, War for Southern Independence, Last Stand of Western Civilization or War to Put Down Rebellion– that great cataclysm of bloodshed and destruction which to many Southerners is what one is always presumed to be speaking about when one simply says “The War”. However on this Memorial Day my memory turns to the War Americans call the War of 1812 which gave us our National Anthem and the first complete military victory of the US over the Brits in a major engagement where no foreigners helped. That came in the battle of New Orleans.  Despite Lamar Mackay, Bob Dudley and thousands of US employees and stockholders the odd truth of all this is that the British and their Swiss allies are invading our most precious resources under the leadership of Tony Hayward and under the concealed banner of British Petroleum.  

Scraping oil off beaches


Below we have a map of how the British invaded Baltimore and how Americans sunk their own ships in a line to block access to the harbor. The British were large held at bay by that single maneuver and the heavy artillery from a fortress which was operating under an enormous star-spangled banner which a lawyer saw from a truce ship and about which he wrote the song which became our anthem.  
This Map Shows  how British Besiege and Attack Baltimore in war of 1812
The American gunboats were supported by a line of sunken American ships in lines not shown on that map that were sacrificed by the waterfolk and traders to limit movement of the mighty British fleet as well as by the fort McHenry which fired off huge guns and small ones beneath an enormous starry flag. The battle was watched by a lawyer in a truce fleet and  he wrote our National Anthem from its inspiration.

British invasion and repulsion in the Battle of New Orleans


The round of hostilities between Britain and America which reached such poetic height in Baltimore reached it end in the Battle of New Orleans which was fought very near where the current battle for the survival of the marshes is ongoing. We are facing the invasion of British Petroleum Crude near where Jackson and his army and Lafitte and his navy (injured by a new American attack) drove off some fine units of UK invaders. There in New Orleans they handed the British the first decisive defeat at the hands of an all American force in a major encounter. The Revolution owed much (if not most) of its winning to the Kingdom and Empire of the French but here French and English-speaking Americans drove out the British Empire in blood-soaked victory alone.    

This 2010 battle of Memorial Day  is an epic struggle and the stakes are very great. It is hard for us to win on this side because if there is little damage it will be used as an excuse for future sabotage or carelessness to be more easily permitted. If there is great damage then we live in age when the natural world is already under great strain and we have rich “well-educated” idiots (who had the capacity not to be idiots when they were young) in government and in big business who never think things through as regards the natural world. I hear so many stupid and irrelevant remarks. The damage done in a short period of time can wipe out millions of years of vital continuity and removing the toxins through there being biodegraded later won’t help. The oyster beds of South Louisiana ought to be compared and classed with vineyards of Napa and Sonoma and instead are classed with the sands of the Arabian deserts. It is hard for me to write this through all the pain and depression I am feeling.
I am very careful to use legal materials in this blog but if I have infringed any rights in this post I will worry about it after I see how much of my homeland has survived. This is a struggle  of enormous proportions. The eleven killed in the explosion and the  dozen or so cleaners who have been hospitalized have suffered in a war in which admirals, generals and Guardsmen are also battling. This is really a struggle for what cannot be replaced. 

Local efforts to block oil incursions

I am going to include a few phrase of my own between pictures of the struggle and verses of the National Anthem. Just above you see people drawing a line against the new invasion. Do we doubt they risk their health in this noble struggle? 

 The Star Spangled Banner Lyrics
By Francis Scott Key 1814


Oh, say can you see by the dawn’s early light
What so proudly we hailed at the twilight’s last gleaming?
Whose broad stripes and bright stars thru the perilous fight,
O’er the ramparts we watched were so gallantly streaming?
And the rocket’s red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there.
Oh, say does that star-spangled banner yet wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?




Fishing fleet cleaning or stranded in many places

Like Baltimore and Lafitte’s flotilla it has fallen to small ship and boat owners to bear the brunt of much of this great battle and they do so alongside the Coast Guard and others in their government’s formal service. But is their civilian service much less patriotic? 

On the shore, dimly seen through the mists of the deep,
Where the foe’s haughty host in dread silence reposes,
What is that which the breeze, o’er the towering steep,
As it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses?
Now it catches the gleam of the morning’s first beam,
In full glory reflected now shines in the stream:
‘Tis the star-spangled banner! Oh long may it wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave! 

A flotilla of shrimp boats adapted for skimming

This flotilla of shrimp boats sails like the Americans of 1812 and 1814 to save their homes families and country. Already some languish in hospitals. Are they not our heroes too?  

 And where is that band who so vauntingly swore
That the havoc of war and the battle’s confusion,
A home and a country should leave us no more!
Their blood has washed out their foul footsteps’ pollution.
No refuge could save the hireling and slave
From the terror of flight, or the gloom of the grave:
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave! 

Louisiana National Guard fights a new enemy.

The National Guardsmen know that their world will not recognize this as combat. They will earn no new respect on world battlefields. Yet they risk their health in a beautiful but dangerous coastal wilderness under hot suns in proximity to possible and unmeasured risks of poisoning. The battle for their homeland and can not hurt the liquid at which they throw their human and mortal flesh. Are they not good warriors in this case as well?  

Oh! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved home and the war’s desolation!
Blest with victory and peace, may the heav’n rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: “In God is our trust.”
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave! 

 I wish everyone a good Memorial Day weekend. I have several friends nobly risking their lives in the two foreign wars we are fighting  and I wish them well.  SD, AD, JS,and JS if you read this know you are not forgotten. But this day my heart is full of pain and also the debt of respect for those who fight with little hope for honor or glory against an invasion so near to so much that I love. 

Note: Throughout the BP Macondo oil leak crisis I was responding day by day to an enormous set of devastating problems for many that I care about deeply or am connected to. While I have made no money on all that work and tried to use my own, open source or public domain materials in every case the stresses were enormous. This particular post has received many views and I have few if any net assets. If it happens that this or any materials used during the crisis are proprietary and used without permission I first apologize and secondly will do in a slow and careful manner whatever I can to make things right. Nonetheless, I am gratified that so many have visited this post over such a long time…

5 responses to “The British Petroleum Oil Spill and Memorial Day

  1. Pingback: Father’s Day Posts & Links not Ignoring BP Oil Spill « Franksummers3ba's Blog

  2. would it be possible to take a look at how surgeons perform heart surgery by putting a stemp in and build a large one to try on the rig

  3. franksummers3ba

    Joan Betts,

    One of my favorite comments in all this was a man who stated to a committee ” I do think it is unfortunate that we are having to build the fire truck during the fire.” I think that cross fertilization of ideas and technologies is certainly more than possible. However, whether people have time to consider really new ideas in this lunatic asylum (which even the best and most perfect disaster response must be to some degree). I f you read all or most of the posts I have on this subject you will see I favor transforming long-term oil policy in several key ways.

  4. Pingback: Happy Independence Day, USA! « Franksummers3ba's Blog

  5. Pingback: Memorial Day 2014: Graham Smith dies Severin Summers Remembered | Franksummers3ba's Blog

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