Darkest political skullduggery: Coup d’etat in the U.S.

August 20, 2008

Here’s a story you won’t read in your U.S. history text: Sore from losing the White House, conservatives try to use an economic “crisis” as an excuse to seize the White House and oust the sitting president.

It might make a good movie — but it hasn’t yet. It actually happened.

Maj. Gen. Smedley D. Butler, The Fighting Quaker - twice winner of the Congressional Medal of Honor

Maj. Gen. Smedley D. Butler, "The Fighting Quaker" - twice winner of the Congressional Medal of Honor

The American Liberty League tried to persuade double-Medal of Honor winner Major Gen. Smedley Darlington Butler to do one more military campaign to save the nation — from Franklin Delano Roosevelt, in 1933. The story was told in a book that quoted extensively from hearings before the U.S. House of Representatives’ Un-American Activities Committee, the group that would become infamous for harassing leftists before the House finally choked it to death. Of course, since no one would believe such a plot, the book is out of print.  The American Liberty League was quite the opposite of leftist – they favored the fascists.

Oh, the wonder of the intertubes! You can download the book, Jules Archer’s The Plot to Seize the White House, at a site called Information Clearinghouse, “News you won’t find on CNN.”

None of the plotters faced any other official investigation beyond the hearings in Congress.

Had the plot succeeded how different would World War II have been?

Tip of the old scrub brush to Progressive Gold’s del.icio.us feeds.

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