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tonymaillman

Turning point ??

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Personally the outcome of the battle of Hastings changed our history quite dramatically .......... but it's only one of MANY happenings to change the course of what shaped Britain ........ anyone want to add their's ? :)

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Been thinking about this one and it's quite difficult; if you examine the "what ifs" then try to work out probable consequences. EG: Battle of Britain 1940: if we'd lost, Britain would have been occupied by the Germans and would have been out of the War. BUT, would this have enabled Germany to defeat the USSR? Would the Japanese still have attacked Pearl Harbour? Arguably, the whole of Europe could have finished up under Soviet control - so yes, it probably was a turning point, but not necessarilly with the consequences we imagine at first glance. :confused:

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Some authors have used 'what if' to write alternative history books. The most famous one here was 'What if the South won the Civil War?'. But the author hedged by diverging much from actual events. Lincoln still was assassinated, the Confederacy eventually freed the slaves, Texas became a third sovereign state in this area between Canada and Mexico... Now that I think of it, there was a TV series called Sliders with John Rhys Davies called Alternate Universes - and I only saw one, with Australia as a dominant hostile occupying power...

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Cool - turning points are interesting as they may or may not have changed the world around us. Like the Atomic Bomb being dropped in Japan.

 

The war ended - but did we all learn anything?

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True Peter, as in many historical accounts the country with the biggest and best military control the rest.

 

 

Another historical turning point to me was the Industrial Revolution. Took our small agrarian communities and turned them into vast piles of slums and human waste(cities).

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You'll hardly get bigger turning points than those!

 

I nominate the execution by the Westminster Parliament of the vindictive and controversial Governor of Ireland, Thomas Wentworth the First Earl of Strafford, in 1641, as part of the build-up to the English Civil War, the Great Rebellion, a series of acts of political defiance of the King in which the English Parliament overthrew the Tudor Constitution and began the first stirrings of Parliamentary Constitutional Monarchy, with Parliament becoming for the first time a body which was more than a Royal money raising exercise or a convenient cover and scapegoat for judicial murder (especially as practised by Henry VIII who often hid behind the House of Commons during his most dastardly deeds). As Joyce Marlow says, Strafford can be called the last of the Barons, and his death at Parliament's hands ended the Middle Ages and brought in a more truly accountable monarchy, far more than that brought in via Magna Carta or Parliament making the Crown a Parliamentary title with the election of Edward III upon the deposition of his father, for example. Strafford's arbitrary and stern governance of Ireland and his application of his mater's foolish policies in the Bishop's Wars in Scotland brought about his downfall, as part of Charles I's foolish attempts to impose arbitrary government in the French style (which was impossible anyway as England did not have the bureaucratic structure due to the powerful medieval kings understanding the need for true partnership with his leading subjects and the institutions of England which had a contractual relationship), and his stupid decision to try to stamp out Presyterianism with persecution of English Puritans, all-out war on Scotland and the attempted British Government ethnic cleansing of the Ulster Presbyterians and the ruthless divide and rule stirring up of sectarian tenstion in Ireland which was part of Charles and Strafford's deliberate policies. With Strafford plotting to invade Scotland with an Irish Army, imposing the Black Oath on Ulster Protestants, and arming the Irish Loyalists and Rebels and stirring them to exterminate the British Government's own supporters in the north of Ireland, executing his own ministers in Ulster, seizing the London Companies in Ulster's property, and imprisoning and fining them, burning down Presbyterian and Catholic homes, putting Prebyterians in chains and sending them in ships back to Scotland, driving English landlords out of their homes, and proposing to drag Presbyterians in chains to Munster after the attempted war in Ulster against them (rescinded by his own cousin in Dublin) and selling some of them as white slaves to the Caribbean (Charles I favoured total extermination of the Ulster Presbyterians instead), Charles and Strafford created chaos and terror which resulted in the loss of the Crown's control over Scotland, the Scottish and Ulster Presbyterians invading England and capturing Carlisle and the whole of the North East of England including Newcastle and Durham and the routing of the English Royalist Army at the Battle of Newburn, and the British Government's planned imposition of the Black Oath on the English too, as well as a proposed purge of Parliament. During the war the English Royalist Army mutinied against killing Scottish Presbyterians, the leading Government minister in Ulster called for the Scottish Parliament to send their troops to Ulster to help them overthrow their bosses in Dublin which prompted Strafford's torture and hanging, drawing and quartering of his own deputy in Ulster. The situation was so serious that England lost its coal supply due to the Scots Presbyterian capture of Newcastle, the London dockers rioted against losing their jobs, and the people of London rioted against the King and his Viceroy. The Militia and the authorities in the Tower sided with Parliament and the gentry ensured a landslide victory for the Puritans in the 1640 Elections. In this light the execution of Strafford was a huge turning point in British and Irish history. With it Parliament secured the reforms which ended the King's prerogative court of the Star Chamber, ended the political power of the Bishops, ended torture in England forever, ensured the freedom of the press, forced the King to have to call Parliament once every three years at least (the Triennial Act), for the right for Parliament to scrutinise Royal legislation and for the King not to be able to dissolve Parliament without the permission of the House of Commons. In short, it was a pivotal moment, and the execution of Strafford ensured that, even before a shot was even fired, the victory of Parliament in the Civil War in England to follow occurred instead of a Royalist one, as Strafford was and is acknowledged as the man who would have ensured total victory for Charles I.

 

[ 25.04.2007, 22:19: Message edited by: Goonerman ]

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