The Coming Conflict.
The war-clouds thicken. Bloody Mars is marshaling his forces from the four quarters of the earth. As seen in Apocalyptic vision, Gog and Magog are being gathered together upon the great plain Armageddon, for the final struggle. The storm-god is about to let fly his lightnings and thunderbolts, and the last grand battle be fought for the supremacy of Freedom or Slavery on this continent. The two largest armies the world ever knew now stand confronting each other, ready at the signal to rush to the deadly conflict. On the one side are arrayed the ragged rapscallions and tatterdemalions of rebellion; misguided, deluded, degraded, but Americans still; on the other, the true hearted and brave defenders of constitutional liberty and free government, firm in their faith, and unfaltering in their determination to uphold the glorious principles of their fathers, and maintain intact the rich inheritance bequeathed by Revolutionary aires.
It will be a hard fought contest. Two antagonistic principles are to grapple in a life-and-death struggle. Blood will flow like water, and our beloved braves by thousands must go down beneath the shock. No great and lasting good was ever gained except at a fearful sacrifice. It is said that the Tree of Liberty must often be watered by the blood of patriots. It has ever been so in the past, and we can hardly hope for a vigorous growth now without this precious nourishment. Then let it come; the sooner, the better. Long enough has the issue been in doubt. Years of angry and vexatious dispute has embittered the feelings of animosity and hatred between the scheming slaveocrats of the South and the loyal yeomanry all over the country. Wise patriots and statesmen foresaw the "troublous times" upon which we have fallen, and sought to avert the impending crisis. But the mad ambition of Southern demagogues would brook no restraint. The traitor-hearted oligarchy must rule or ruin. To force the issue upon the country, they precipitated the cotton States into rebellion against the dispassionate judgment of the large majority of the people. But two alternatives remain — utter national destruction or the suppression of the rebellion. Indications now are that the contest will be short, sharp and decisive for Liberty and Union. God grant it.