Saturday, January 24, 2009

New Battle of the Plains of Abraham

It seems that National Battlefield Commission is planning a re-enactment of the Battle of the Plains of Abraham next year to mark it's 250th anniversary. This doesn't seem like a very good idea and I find myself agreeing with Quebec nationalists who oppose the effort for obvious reasons. 'It's like the French celebrating their defeat at the hands of the Nazis', says one M. Parent in Saturday's La Presse.
The battle, where the English General Wolfe defeated the French, led by General Montcalm is viewed by nationalists as "La Conquete" or conquest and the beginning of the long and painful "Naaqba", the cruel domination of the Quebecois by the English that persists until today.
Trouble is that historians readily admit that this tiny skirmish involving a few thousand men on both sides had nothing to do with France losing Quebec to the English. The truth is rather less exciting. Quebec was ceded to England, in a package deal by virtue of the Treaty of Paris which ended the Seven Years War in 1763.

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