The Fate of Liberty - Study Guide Chapter 5 Summary & Analysis

Mark E. Neely, Jr.
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Chapter 5, "The Dark Side of the Civil War," examines ethical and practical reactions to government corruption, anti-Semitism, and torture, including how and when money talks in the Lincoln administration. The Civil War produces lucrative opportunities for fraud and plundering that the civil courts cannot control, but the Army can. Federal investigators eagerly go after influential wrongdoers and are largely incorruptible. Bell & Green, Claims Agents, defraud widows and orphans of pensions, invest their funds unwisely, blame government red tape for pension problems, speculate in contraband, and forge widows' names on powers of attorney. In February 1864, the War Department catches on and raids their offices.

During the hasty mobilization for war, few such cases are prosecuted. Nonetheless, "Honest Abe" cannot have corruption taint his administration, and Turner devotes much time investigating fraud. In 1865, the War Department seizes John N. Eitel of New York...

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This section contains 1,072 words
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