ETHNIC CLEANSINGIn today’s geopolitics ethnic cleansing is something that only the ‘evil’ side of humanity would even consider. We look back on the horrors of the holocaust, Stalinism, and in recent times – the Serb/Muslim conflicts in the Former Yugoslavia. Today’s news broadcasts seem to be rather similar to the depictions of scorched earth behaviour of English soldiers against the French Acadians in the 1750’s.
Although this is outside of the 1843 time capsule, I’ve included it in order to show how Miss Grove perceived the situation.“…but in other places the French had been victorious; and the Novascotians, hearing of their friends’ defeat, and still smarting from the wounds inflicted on themselves, resolved to be rid of those who were only neutral in the absence of temptation to hostility.”
Five vessels carried the men away, followed by numerous vessels removing women and children and dispersing them throughout the southern states – not caring whether families were reunited. After the dispersal, 200-300 houses were burned, along with barns and mills:“…and the English soldiers were left alone, they were surprised at the extent of the destruction they had caused. The smoke was still rising from the burning houses,-the cattle lowing as if expecting the notice of their masters, and the fertile country that lay around them was without inhabitants. They had done their work-there was no longer an enemy for them to subdue. The smoke-the ruins-the lowing cattle-the dogs howling over the scene of desolation, and even the deserted fields, seemed to ask if all this ruin had not been the act of haste and revenge.” Some captured natives wept over a priest’s body which had been
perforated with balls, his head scalped, his skull broken with the blows of hatchets, his mouth and eyes filled with mud, the bones of his legs fractured, and his limbs dreadfully mangled.”