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2016年01月11日

渾然不覺 - 古德明

Ulysses Grant, supreme commander of the Unionist armies, knowing Lincoln's attitude of leniency and desiring to be prepared for all eventualities, once asked whether he was to try to capture Jefferson Davis, president of the Confederacy, or let him escape from the country if he would.
Lincoln explained his stand: "Have you heard of the story of the Irishman who had taken the pledge of Father Mathew?①He became terribly thirsty, applied to a bartender for a lemonade, and while it was being prepared whispered to him, 'And couldn't ye put a little brandy in it all unbeknown to meself?' If you can let Jeff Davis escape all unbeknown to yourself, let him go. I don't want him."②
美國北方聯邦軍隊統帥攸里西斯.格蘭特對任何事情,都希望先有準備。他知道林肯寬大為懷,就問他是想活捉南部邦聯的總統傑佛遜.戴維斯,還想讓他逃脫──假如他要逃的話。
林肯說明立場:「你有沒有聽過這個故事?有個愛爾蘭人發誓遵從馬修神父的禁酒主義①,但苦於酒渴,向酒保要一杯檸檬水,在酒保弄檸檬水時,低聲說:『請問可不可以乘我渾然不覺,加點白蘭地?』假如能讓戴維斯乘你渾然不覺,逃離國土,就讓他逃吧。我不想要他。」②
①馬修是十九世紀愛爾蘭神父,鼓吹禁酒。
②南北戰爭結束時,戴維斯被擒,監禁兩年之後獲許保釋。

古德明

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