The war of 1812 is rather seminal to the creation of the "Canadian Character".
This book, written some fifty years after the fact by William F. Coffin, a participant, is a well researched study on the PEOPLE who participated in this exercise. In it, one is struck by some interesting facts which were glossed over in the history books...facts like the US president had intentionally NOT ratified the treaty signed by most of the rest of the world regarding neutrality, thereby setting up the subsequent events in which British ships boarded American flagged vessels in search of deserters. I also had never known that the British government profusely apologised for the Chesepeak incident, and had in fact, payed reparations. The incident of the British ship "Little Belt" was also glossed over in my school books. Oh heck, read chapter two. You will see what I mean.
1. The Maine was blown up, but NOT by the Spanish. Made a good excuse to go to war with Spain though.
2. The Lucitania was carrying war material, and the British government, with the approval of the US government, told the Germans that. The Germans fired a torpedo, and the Lucitania sunk in 3 minutes flat. The subsequent war lasted a bit longer.
3. The Gulf of Tonkin was the sordid story of the sinking of a pair of gunboats which never should have been there in the first place, but in fact, didn't happen at all the way it played out in the press. Oh well, a good excuse to delare war against North Vietnam.
4. Pearl Harbour was known about a week in advance, the Japanese ambassador was kept waiting on purpose until it was way too late. The "sneak attack" was anything but sneaky, the fleet that was capable of sailing got the hell out of the harbour, and they loaded up the ships that could not sail with enough ammo to destroy the invading air force, which by the way, they pretty much did. The result...war in the Pacific.
5. Twin towers...no, it was not orchestrated by the governement, regardless of what the conspiracy blogs all say. However, the spin on this unfortunate event led to war against Iraq, "America's Friend" instead of on the real perpetrators. It took three more years before they could no longer hide the fact that the took on the "wrong" terrorists.
And it all started back in 1812.
Or did it? Anybody know who treacherously killed a patrol of French soldiers minding their own business back in western Pennsylvania? And started a world war by his actions?