An Interview with The Wars Against Napoleon: Debunking the Myth of the Napoleonic Wars co-author Ben Weider
: How did you become interested in Napoleon?
BW: My fascination with Napoleon began over 50 years ago. His desire to spread “liberty, fraternity, and equality” to all citizens of France and then to all citizens of countries that the French Army occupied, is what evoked my respect for and interest in Napoleon.
: And where did the idea for your most recent book, The Wars Against Napoleon, come from?
BW: In my work as a sports official I have traveled to over 104 countries. I have met numerous Napoleonic historians and visited many Napoleonic sites. During my trips to Paris, I realized that historians very rarely acknowledge Napoleon’s great work.
: What inspired you and General Michel Franceschi to write this book?
BW: Napoleon was a man ahead of his time. When I realized all the errors, lies, and calumnies that were directed at him, I was amazed. I learned, through looking in the archives in both England and France, that Napoleon was not responsible for the so-called “Napoleonic Wars.” In fact, it was England that supplied the funds and created the coalitions, which resulted in the “wars against Napoleon.” I felt something had to be done to correct the misconceptions about Napoleon.
: Describe the true Napoleon.
BW: After reading historical private documents and the exchange of correspondence between the European kings and Napoleon, I realized that Napoleon was a man of peace and not a man of war. Napoleon would have liked nothing more than to rule France and to create a country that was respectful of its people and would give “liberty, fraternity, and equality” to all its citizens. He was also a man ahead of his time.
: Can you explain some of Napoleon’s advanced thinking?
BW: Napoleon was so far ahead of his time that he desired to organize a United States of Europe. This meant that all of Europe would have one law, one currency, one Government, etc. Interestingly, the European common market, as it exists today, is an outcome of Napoleon’s advanced thinking.
: How do you think the public will respond to your book?
BW: I like to state that truth goes through three stages. First it is ridiculed. Second it is violently attacked. This is what will happen when my book is published. Finally, the truth is accepted as self-evident. This will happen once people read my book and are able to evaluate the facts as they are.
: Thank you for your time and insight, Mr. Weider. We appreciate it.
BW: Thank you.
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