Who Was Longstreet To Blame For The Confederate Defeat At Gettysburg?

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In order to check the furious fighting on the left, Meade moved troops in from his extreme right as reinforcements. This shift in the Union line brings up the third point of interest. While the left flank was under heavy attack from Longstreet, the right was supposed to be under pressure from Ewell's attack. The plans were simple; when Ewell heard Longstreet's guns, his orders were to attack. A unified assault would have weakened the defenses on the Union left by keeping the right busy and not allowing for a transfer of troops. However, as it turned out, Meade was able to move his forces around because Ewell was late. It took two hours for his attack to commence and by then the weakened forces in position on the right had been sufficiently reinforced and were ready to fight. The Union line at Gettysburg was a much tighter line and had twenty thousand more soldiers in it than did the Confederate line. It was essential that the two attacks coincide if there was going to be any chance of a Confederate victory.
At the conclusion of the second day of the
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Was Longstreet to blame for the Confederate defeat at Gettysburg? George Milton thinks so. He says that if Longstreet had not been so determined to do things his own way, and was actually in favor of fighting at Gettysburg, it would have surely been a Confederate victory. He says that an assault at dawn, as originally planned, on the second day would have been the hammer blow that destroyed the Union defenses. As it turned out, however, Longstreet's forces were among the last to even reach the field of battle and for that reason, Milton believes, he should be held accountable: "They (military critics) lament that Lee did not immediately remove him from command and confine or shoot him". Longstreet's insubordination was the reason for the Confederate failure on the second day of the battle and it may have cost the South the

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