Why Did The American Civil War Was Inevitable?

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Two fundamental questions normally surround the history of any war: whether the war was inevitable and if it was necessary. These same questions emerge any time during debates regarding the American Civil war. The most cited cause of the Civil war is the secession of certain southern states that formed the Confederate States of America in January 1861. Thomas Bonner writes "Civil War Historians and the "Needless War" Doctrine" arguing that Southern Carolina seceded in 1860, followed by six other states by January the following year. A deep analysis of the events leading to the war indicates that the Union and the Confederates had profound ideological, economic, political, and social differences. However, while these causes could not have been resolved to avoid the war, history has proved that the American Civil War was a necessary conflict that shaped the future of America in a way only hitherto imagined.
President Lincoln’s Second
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However, these differences show that the North and South were actually two distinct countries held together by one constitution. The North felt that decisions regarding slavery and its legality were entrenched in the central government while the South felt that such decision belonged to the individual states. In the times preceding the war, both sides could not reach a compromise. Bonner mentions, “Because secession and war were permitted to come, warned Russel, "We are not entitled to lay the flattering unction to our souls that the Civil War was an inevitable conflict (Bonner, 195).” Hence, these differences could only be addressed through war. President Lincoln made it clear in the Emancipation Proclamation that any state found holding slaves would be in contravention of the Constitution of the United Sates and thus would be considered to be in “rebellion against the United States” (Lincoln,
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