Photograph of the base of the Alamo cenotaph

Revisionist History Continues

In Front Page, History, Military by Allen West

I love studying history, and there is a quote attributed to one George Santayana, circa 1928, that states, “those who fail to learn from history, are doomed to repeat it.”

I find the revisionist history endeavors of the progressive socialist left in America utterly offensive, and imbecilic. It is amazing to me — but, it is intentional — that many of our schools do not instruct our future generations on such fundamentals as the Declaration of Independence and our US Constitution. It is because of this wholesale campaign by the left in America, including the insidious 1619 Project of the NY Times, why we find ourselves dumbed down as a nation, incapable of knowing our own rule of law. As one Barry Soetoro once proclaimed, “we are five days away from fundamentally transforming the United States of America.” Sadly, mindless lemmings cheered and roared as their indoctrinated and non-functioning brains had no idea about what this charlatan spoke . . . nor possessed the intellectual rigor to question.

Unfortunately, the left’s campaign to rewrite history, and revise it, based upon their ideological agenda, has landed in the Lone Star State of Texas.

It was just last year, in September, that the Texas State Board of Education had to call for an emergency session. Why? Because some chucklehead came up with the idea to remove the reference of “heroic” for the defenders of The Alamo from Texas history books. Yes, generations of young Texans were to be taught that the defenders of The Alamo were not heroic!

Think about it: one of the great, and, indeed, heroic stands in military history, 185 men holding against thousands for thirteen days was to be denigrated by some safe-space triggered leftist.

Now, having been born and raised in Georgia, a graduate of the University of Tennessee, a former member of Congress, and a career military officer who retired from Ft. Hood, Texas, and now calls Texas my home . . . this is, well, quite personal.

Jim Bowie’s life began in Georgia, there were many Tennessee Volunteers at The Alamo . . . one was also a former member of the US House of Representatives. I now serve in the Texas State Guard whose early origins pre-dates the Texian revolution.

How absurd. Then again, how typical of these leftists to take over local school boards and come up with this nonsense. But, now, we are facing an even greater threat, disrespect, disregard, and denigration of those 185 men who heroically defended The Alamo. Let me explain.

“The word cenotaph is derived from the Greek kenos taphos, meaning “empty tomb.” A cenotaph is a monument, sometimes in the form of a tomb, to a person or group of persons buried elsewhere. Ancient Greek writings tell of many cenotaphs, although none of them survives.”

For those of you who do not know the story of The Alamo, shame on you if you live in Texas, and the entire nation needs to know. The Mexican Army under General Santa Anna flew the black flag — meaning no quarter given to the defenders of The Alamo — they would be slaughtered to the last. Davy Crockett is reported to have been the last man bayoneted to death at The Alamo on that early Sunday morning in March of 1836. The bodies of all the Alamo defenders were then piled up and set afire, no graves, no markers, no memorial. Today, at The Alamo in San Antonio de Bexar, there is a cenotaph as a remembrance to those men, whom we must never forget in the annals of Texas history, Texas greatness.

But, for some, it is just nothing more than something to be moved, relocated, in order to be a part of city planning. Doggone disgusting, and truly disconcerting. I must ask, what manner of coward would allow something like this to go forward? Trust me, I would say that to the face of those responsible for this happening.

As reported by the Rivard Report:

“Work is set to begin over the next few months on the first phase of the Alamo site redesign, involving moving the Cenotaph monument to the Alamo defenders to its new location near the Menger Hotel. The Cenotaph, designed by Italian sculptor Pompeo Coppini and built in 1936, commemorates the Texian revolutionaries killed in the 1836 battle defending the Alamo from the Mexican Army.

As part of the $450 million redevelopment of the historic battle site and surrounding plaza, Philadelphia-area engineering firm CVM Professional will deconstruct the Cenotaph and reassemble it less than 500 feet to the south. In the new location, a bandstand currently sits in a shady grove of live oaks. The City’s Parks and Recreation Department is working to relocate the bandstand, officials said.

“What you’re seeing in this first phase is really the delineation, the creation of this new civic space,” said Doug McDonald, CEO of the Alamo Trust, in an interview Monday. 

Alamo Trust is the nonprofit set up by the Texas General Land Office (headed by George P. Bush, Jeb Bush’s son) that manages the Alamo.

Also included in the first phase is the new Fiesta parade route and a “free speech zone” that promoters of the redesign say will incorporate the ways people have historically used Alamo Plaza. 

“There’s a promise we made to the Alamo Citizens Advisory Committee … to tell a more complete story, to be inclusive of all the stories in this area,” said Councilman Roberto Trevino (D1), one of the committee’s three chairs.

“We are going to be more inclusive of different layers of history.”

Funding for the first phase will come out of the $38 million the City of San Antonio has committed to the Alamo redesign. To restore and relocate the Cenotaph the City and Alamo Trust have retained CVM, which has experience moving the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia and restoring the Washington Monument in Baltimore, among other historic monuments.

Still, many said the Cenotaph should stay where it is. Charisma Villarreal, a Helotes resident who traces her lineage to Alamo defender Jose Gregorio Esparza, said moving the structure will detract from the meaning Coppini intended with his placement of the monument.

“The fact that they’re moving it away from the Alamo, it’s not going to have the same meaning,” Villareal said. “Those stone faces are not going to be looking on the Alamo; they’re going to be looking at the Menger (hotel).”

First of all, imagine if there was an attempt to relocate the Washington Monument? Heck, I might be careful as some leftist will deem that an appropriate idea, or just tear it down completely. If this were a matter of renovation and restoration, I do not believe there would be any concern or resistance. However, we are talking about moving the cenotaph away from the very site for which it was intended to honor.

As the Greek definition and tradition articulates, in keeping with that theme, the monument, cenotaph, to Spartan King Leonidas and his 300 Spartans who defended the narrow pass at the Battle of Thermopylae, circa 490BC,  is not located back on the Peloponnese or in Sparta proper. No, it is located at the site where they made their stand against an overwhelming invasion force of the Persians under Xerxes. It is there that Leonidas’ immortal words to be sent back to Sparta are inscribed at the base of the bronze Spartan warrior, “Go tell the Spartans, and strangers passing by, that here, obedient to their laws we lie.”

That statue is not meant to face a hotel. Neither should The Alamo cenotaph be moved! For what reason?

“Also included in the first phase is the new Fiesta parade route and a “free speech zone” that promoters of the redesign say will incorporate the ways people have historically used Alamo Plaza. 

“There’s a promise we made to the Alamo Citizens Advisory Committee … to tell a more complete story, to be inclusive of all the stories in this area,” said Councilman Roberto Trevino (D1), one of the committee’s three chairs. “We are going to be more inclusive of different layers of history.”

What the heck is this San Antonio City Councilman Trevino talking about, “being more inclusive of different layers of history?” This is the typical leftist mumbo jumbo about revisionist history based upon their inane perspective on being inclusive. Inclusive of all the stories in this area, to tell a more complete story? Excuse me . . . Whiskey-Tango-Foxtrot????

The entire city council of San Antonio needs to be removed, recalled, sent away. Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush needs to have his head examined if he is in charge of the office that has approved this nonsense.

What the heck is happening in Texas? I can answer that, we have allowed the infiltration of a dangerous, poisonous, cancerous ideological mindset to take root. If The cenotaph is moved away from the site where it honors the memory of The Alamo defenders, then we move even closer to allowing a fundamental transformation of Texas.

What next, move the San Jacinto battlefield memorial? How about moving the memorial and remembrance to the men who were massacred, executed at Goliad? Maybe the “Come and Take It” flag and symbol will be designated as an extremist slogan . . . after all, the left did the same with the Gadsden Flag, “Don’t Tread on Me.” And remember, leftists have been talking about renaming the capital of Texas. After all, Stephen F. Austin had slaves. And, what about that massive statue of Tennessean, and first General and President of the Republic of Texas, Sam Houston that is astride I-45 heading south from Huntsville, Texas?

In the Middle East, there is a saying, “never allow the camel to get the nose under the tent, the rest of the body will follow.” We are allowing the progressive socialist leftists to get their nose under the tent and revise our history to talk about being more inclusive of different layers of history and inclusive of all the stories in the area. There is only one story to tell about The Alamo: it is about valor, heroism, and resolve…that is the grit that makes a Texan!

A young fella from the south named William Barret Travis was the commander at The Alamo. He was only 26 when he wrote a letter from The Alamo asserting that he would never surrender and that he would never retreat. He closed his letter describing what it meant to be a soldier, his honor, and the honor of his country. He pledged, “Victory or Death.”

In his, and the memory of those 185, we must now pledge that we shall not surrender or retreat and that we will not allow the cenotaph to be removed. That means henceforth, a massive campaign of calls and emails to Texas Land Commissioner, George P. Bush’s office, as well as the City Council of San Antonio. It means calling the office of the Philadelphia-area engineering firm CVM Professional, and let them know, hands off. It means filing injunctions in court to stop this action.

This must not be allowed to happen, plain and simple. Those who are advancing this foolhardy endeavor shall pay a heavy electoral price. Yes, I will give my all to see to that end.

Victory or Death!

Photo credit: David R. Tribble

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LTC West is running for Chair of the Republican Party of Texas! To support his efforts, please visit his campaign website!

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