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February 8, 2023 41 mins

Before his name became synonymous with treason, Benedict Arnold was a bonafide hero of the American Revolutionary War. At critical moments Arnold inspired the Patriots with his grit and determination and earned the admiration of George Washington. Despite his popularity and battlefield prowess, Benedict Arnold eventually broke bad. Mo talks with author Nathaniel Philbrick about the now-notorious military man’s twisty path to betrayal - and explores the surprising backstories of other villains including France’s Philippe Pétain and Satan.

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Episode Transcript

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Speaker 1 (00:02):
We take it for granted, but American independence was not
a foregone conclusion. The Revolutionary War was long, more than
six grinding years between the first shots at Lexington and
Conquered and the British surrender at Yorktown, and they all
too oft an unpaid, ill equipped, underfed patriots were almost

always playing defense, one battle away from total defeat and
the very real risk of capital punishment as traitors to
the crown. Father of his country. George Washington earned that title,
but Washington wasn't at Saratoga in upstate New York, site
of arguably the most important turning point in the war.

In the summer of seventeen seventy seven, about eight thousand
troops under British General John Burgoyne came down from Canada
and through the Hudson River Valley, expecting to join British
troops moving up from New York City. The colonies would
be split into a classic divide and conquer and the

rebellion would be put down. But those other British troops
didn't show, and on September near the town of Saratoga,
the British Burgoyne met a line of American troops after
an initial bloody confrontation, the British and the Americans, under

the cautious leadership of General Horatio Gates, engaged each other
indecisively for almost three weeks. Then, on October seven, the
British launched an attack, trying to break through American lines,
but before Gates could issue a command, another American general
flew into action. No man shall keep me in my

tent today, this general raged. I am without command, and
I will fight in the ranks. But the soldiers, God
bless them, will follow my lead. Cursing, rallying the patriots,
he charged out on horseback, straight into the fray. He
was our fighting general. A comrade later wrote, as brave

a man as ever lived that general's name, Benedict Arnold.
Anyone would be hard pressed the point to a officer
in the Continental Army who was a better general. In
the first years of the Revolution, Arnold's horse was shot
from right under him. He suffered a terrible wound to

his leg, but he and his men prevailed, routing the British.
Ten days later, Burgoyne surrendered. As a result of that victory,
the French entered to the Revolutionary War on the side
of the Patriots. As the writer R. W. Apple Jr.
Put it, it marked the beginning of the end of
the British Empire, and it breathed life into the United

States of America, in no small part thanks to Benedict Arnold.
This is the hidden part of Arnold, the Arnold before
he went back, but just three years later, Benedict Arnold,
the hero of Saratoga, would betray his country, his name
consigned to infamy. Whom can we trust? Now? That was

the question that Arnold made all Americans face. This episode
will tell you the story of Benedict Arnold before he
became synonymous with treason, and will tell you the surprising
backstories of some of history's other villains. You have summoned
the Prince of Temptation fo what Purpose? From CBS Sunday

Morning and I Heart I'm Morocca. And this is mobituaries,
This mopit Benedict Arnold, Peanuts and satan before they went bad.

You know what are you doing studying my script? I'm
in the school play. Oh it's wonderful, I'll plan Benedict Donald,
Benedict Arnold. Yeah, it's a great part. Well, it is
if you like being a trader that's from a nine
two episode of The Brady Bunch. Middle son Peter Braby

gets cast in the school play as Benedict Arnold, and
it's making him a pariah, so much so that he
fakes being sick to get out of the play. I
want you to level with us. You don't want to
be in that play, don't you. No. I don't why, Peter,
you said you were going to be the best Benedict
Donald ever. Well, you don't know what it's been like.

Everybody riding me, booing and hissing me because I'm playing
a trader. I understood Peter's predicament. I don't know about
the kids today, but when I was growing up, to
be called a Benedict Arnold was a really insult, wasn't it. Oh? Absolutely,
but it was weird. My mom always said her hero
was Bennedicgonald, and so that just confused me as a kid.

Bennedicdonald epitomizes being a trader, being evil. He is the
snake in our garden. Historian Nathaniel Philbrick is the author
of three books on the American Revolution, including Valiant Ambition,
about the relationship between Benedict Donald and George Washington. But
hold on a second, what was your mother's rationale for

saying he was her hero? She was a contrarian. But
I think back in the day she read ken Robert's
series of novels about the American Revolution, and Benedicdonald is
portrayed largely as a sympathetic character. Kenneth Roberts was a
popular writer of historical fiction in the first half of
the twentieth century. He wrote a couple of books focusing

not on Arnold's eventual treachery but his earlier military daring
do But my mom latched onto this with a vengeance
because it just appealed to her, being against the grain
of most people's thinking. Now, I know some of you
may be thinking focusing on Benedict Arnold's early heroics for
this episode is kind of like talking about how great

Richard Nixon was for creating the e p A without
mentioning Watergate. But Nixon was kind of great for creating
the E p A. People are complicated, get over it.
Don't worry. We'll get to Arnold's betrayal in the third act.
But first, what kind of a family did Benedict Donold
come from? He came from a large, lead dysfunctional family

of a family that was living in the shadow of
their forebears. Those forbears were also named Benedict Arnold. Our
protagonist was the fourth born in seventy. Arnold's great grandfather,
the first Benedict, was a governor of the Rhode Island Colony.
But after Arnold's father left Rhode Island to start a

life in Norwich, Connecticut, multiple tragedy struck. Four of Benedict
Arnold's five siblings died before the age of ten. Benedict
Arnold and his sister Hannah would be the only survivors,
and his father went to drinking and Arnold his later
life I think would be kind of a repudiation of
his difficult childhood because he had a chip on his

shoulders from the very beginning, and he wanted to make
something of himself, because I think he had this sense
of coming from a place of shame. After a seven
year apprenticeship with an apothecary, he started his own pharmacy
and bookselling business in New Haven. He was doing okay,

but young Benedict had long craved adventure. He wanted to
be the person that he idealized the swashbuckling man of action,
and physically he was fearless, you know, he was a
kind of athlete. One person described him as the best
skater he had ever seen skater as an ice skater. Yeah,

it's a funny observation. But there are several anecdotes about
his youth that he was a daredevil. There was a
water mill in Norwich and he would grab onto the
water wheel, rided all the way up and then dive
off into the stream. He was not a big guy,
but one of those guys with that kind of athletes

swagger and built very solidly, and someone who could intimidate
other people, not only in terms of yelling at them,
you know, just his physical presence. It's funny because you
write that he claimed he was a coward until fifteen
years of age. He said that his bravery was learned,
and so, according to his own account, at about fifteen,

you know, which is a time in life when all
sorts of stuff is usually happening in the life of
a teenager, he made this decision, I'm going to be
a badass, and that's what he would be. By the
time Arnold was in his twenties, he had taken to
the high seas a successful merchant, captaining his own ships,
sailing as far south as the Caribbean and as far

north as Canada. He began to build what would be,
if he had ever finished it, the most opulent house
in New Haven. Who was a man on the make,
a man to be admired, and a budding patriot. When
the British wanted to tax the Americans without giving them
representation in Parliament, you remember all of that, Arnold found

a cause he could fight for. He became a smuggler,
rating his businesses in open defiance of the British tariffs.
He joined the Sons of Liberty, the secretive group that
carried out the Boston Tea Party. Then on the morning
of April nineteenth, seventeen seventy five, the British fired on
colonial militiamen at Lexington. The Revolutionary War had begun, and

Benedict Arnold lapped into action. When I heard about Lexington conquered,
he led a group right to the Boston area. You know,
getting on a horse and riding around and giving orders
was exactly the kind of thing. Ben MacDonald was wired
for his years as a merchant and a Mariner had
prepared him well for this moment, and because of his

knowledge of the geography of New England and Canada, he
realizes that strategically, the Americans need to have control of
Lake Champlain. Lake Champlain wasn't just a crucial waterway just
to its south, stood for ty con To Roga with
more than sixty cannons firepower that George Washington's Continental Army

desperately needed. So he proposed to the powers that be
in Boston that they take Fort Ticonda Roga, a kind
of extraordinarily aggressive move, but the Powers that Be agreed
with him and gave him a commission to go up there.
At off he would go, leading one of the most
important military actions of the beginning of the American Revolution.

Arnold took Fort Ticonda Roga, though he had to share
credit with Vermont or Ethan Allen. Yes, Ethan Allen was
a real person, not just the name of a furniture company.
Neither man liked sharing credit, but soon Arnold would surpass
Allen in heroics with an audacious attempt to capture the
British Canadian province of Quebec and make it our fourteenth colony.

This involved a legendary and brutal three hundred fifty mile
trek through the wilderness of Maine. It was the fall
of seventeen seventy five. The weather was getting bad, but
Arnold was all for it, and Washington, who was impressed
by Arnold, sent him on this desperate journey through the wilderness.

Almost half the men would desert or die or starve.
It was just one of these incredible tests of endurance,
but somehow Arnold would make it and be dubbed the
American Hannibal. I traced his route through there, and that
part of Maine is still so remote that just about
every road you see has Arnold on it, as if
he was. About the last time anyone was up there

was when Arnold went up there during the American Revolution.
Are you serious that their roads still named after him? Yeah,
They're a part of the landscape up there in the
wilds of Maine. You can see tangible evidence of Arnold's
bravery and adventurous ambition. I'm thinking these areas are so
remote they still haven't heard about the betrayal that happened

later on, hasn't, right, it's still news. Yeah. The Siege
of Quebec all timidly failed. Arnold's left leg was shattered
in battle and the Americans retreated. But Arnold's actions helped
slow the British down, and for his valor he was
made a brigadier general. George Washington praised him as a

persevering and enterprising officer. In some ways, was he a
more talented general than George Washington? Judged by the evidence, yes,
I think you'd have to say that. And the thing is,
Benedict Arnold knew he was that good. The brash confidence
that made him a hero on the battlefield was matched
by an arrogance off of it. What did Arnold's men

think of him in the midst of battle? They loved Arnold.
He was someone who, in the heat of the moment,
behaved with a quiet calm and yet a forceful, inspiring charisma.
The trouble with Arnold occurred after the battle. You know,
he was prickly. He could be completely condescending and judgmentel.

He did not brook any kind of what he perceived
as incompetence, and as a consequence, there were just as
many people who despised the man. And when I say despise,
I mean they hated him. There's two reactions, and there's
no one that seems in between. You either love the
man or you despise him. Someone who despised Arnold early

on was a militiaman named John Brown. No, not the
nineteenth century abolitionist. This John Brown was part of the
force that had seized for Takonta Roga. Soon after that,
he accused Arnold of attempting to defect during that battle.
Arnold was cleared to that allegation, but Brown would go
on to write in a pamphlet words about Arnold that

proved prophetic quote. Money is this man's God, and to
get enough of it he would sacrifice his country. We'll
continue with the story of Benedict Arnold on the other
side of the break, but first, before they went bad,
Philippe Petan. During World War Two, Francis Philippe Petan betrayed

his country by collaborating with Nazi Germany. The German juggernaut
rolls on on to Dunkirk, on to Paris. After Hitler's
Germany seized France in nineteen forty, Petan was appointed head
of the nominally independent French state known as v she France.
He soon proclaimed that collaborating with Hitler was the only

way to repair the ruin caused by Germany's conquest of France.
I say, obviously, actually John the accipi. The French puppet
government put up no significant resistance to Nazi demands and
voluntarily implemented anti Jewish legislation, even rounding up Jews. Over

seventy five thousand French Jews would die in the Holocaust.
Payton's very name became a byword for collaborationist quizzlings, which
is quite the turn for someone whose first act was
so honorable. As an army general in World War One,
Payton was in charge of halting the seemingly unstoppable German

offensive on the French city of their Done over what
would be the longest and most brutal battle of the war.
Initially pneumoniaus stricken and commanding troops from his sick bed,
Payton skillfully reorganized the French front line, made innovative use
of artillery, and inspired his demoralized and outnumbered rank and

file Miraculously verdon held Pathan emerged a national hero and
was awarded the title of Martial, one of France's highest
military distinctions. Three decades later, the story was much different.
This is the Pali de Justice, where peta marshal of

France and Hiro Verda, is on trial for his life
on charges of plotting against the internal security of his
country and collaboration with the enemy. After Payton's conviction for
treason in French, leader Charles de gaul is said to
have remarked, the Marshal is a great man who died

in ninety five. I think we forget how frightening a
revolution is. The whole underpinnings of what was your life

have been ripped apart, and suddenly you have to make
decisions about a future that you have no idea where
it is headed. And so I had sympathies for loyalists
and patriots. That's historian Nathaniel Philbrick again. He says that
throughout the revolution the colonists were a lot more divided

than we might like to imagine. I don't know what
I would have been. You know, I love my country,
I love America. Basically, they are a third of the
Americans are definitely in the patriot cause, and the third
of the Americans are loyalists. To say, you know, why
are we having a revolution? We are the freest, most
prosperous society on earth. What is wrong with this picture?

And then there's the other third who really don't care.
They just want to live their lives. Remember, this is
three years into a war with Great Britain and Empire,
with vast resources at its disposal. It's really no wonder
that there were lots of colonists who thought the British
would ultimately prevail. But early in the Revolution, Benedict Arnold

continued to prove himself a patriot on land and see.
In the fall of seventeen seventy six, at the Battle
of Valker Island, Arnold commanded America's first naval force. He
supervised the construction of part of the fleet, and while
the British won that battle, Arnold successfully stalled them long

enough to prevent a larger incursion. He is clearly the
most talented general on Washington's staff, and he's up for promotion.
At this point, Arnold was a brigadier general looking to
become a major general, but due to the Continental congress
As rules on military promotions, a bunch of lesser generals

kept getting promoted past Arnold. Arnold had an important friend
in George Washington, though, who very much disapproved of Congress
passing him over. Washington couldn't believe that this had happened.
He told Arnold, please hold on, I'll check into this.
But Washington's please on, behalf of arn Old went nowhere.

For a military guy, it's all about the rank, and
here five people who were below him and who had
had shown none of his talent and abilities had been
elevated past him. Arnold finally did get his promotion after
getting his horse shot from under him twice at the
Battle of Ridgefield, but the damage to his ego had

been done. By the time of his heroics at Saratoga,
where we began this episode, Arnold was already embittered. It
didn't help that at Saratoga his leg was crushed after
his horse was again shot from under him. Being Benedict
Donald's force was apparently the most dangerous job during the
American Revolution. During his long recovery, Benedict Arnold brooded and

seethed over the credit he hadn't been given. And so
this is where the demons begin to whisper in Arnold's ear,
why are you doing this? In seventy eight, George Washington
made the now physically compromised general the military governor of Philadelphia.
But the city of brotherly love was in a state

of near civil war, fiercely divided between patriots and loyalists.
You needed someone of great compassion and judgment to try
to keep a lid on this. That was not Arnold.
It was the worst possible situation. So Washington, trying to
do as well by him as as he could, I think,
actually put Arnold in the position that would lead him

down the road that he would eventually followed to treason.
Philadelphia wasn't just politically riven, it was a hotbed of corruption.
Opportunities for profiteering abounded. Benedict Arnold, who had left a
lucrative business behind to take part in the war, who
had spent much of his own fortune in the fight,
and who felt unthanked for his sacrifice, was not about

to hold back. He thrust his hands into the into
the treasury and through the till exactly and starts taking
advantage of every opportunity he can. And he's not the
only general doing this. I mean, all of these officers
aren't getting paid and they're running out of money, But
no one goes at it with the fervor of Benedict Donald.

It's a volatile situation just looking to explode. At the
same time he's lining his own pockets. Arnold begins cozying
up with Philadelphia's British loyalist set and meets Peggy Shipping,
the daughter of a prominent family suspected of loyalist leanings,
and falls desperately in love with her. Arnold is older

than she is. Arnold's approaching forty. He's injured, but in
kind of a sexy way. His left leg is shorter
than the right, he has to put it up on
a chair and all that, but he's resplendent in his
major general's uniform and they have fallen love. One of
the ways Arnold woos her he reuses parts of a

love letter he wrote to someone else. He thought the
letter was pretty darn good because he would basically reuse
the entire paragraphs, if not pages, of this letter when
he sent it to Peggy, cutting and pasting a mash note.
I know he's really starting to sound like a jerk,
and I think this is an index to character. You know,

he has social ambitions, he has romantic conditions, but you
know there's no need to get too carried away here.
If you did a good job the first time, you
can reuse it. You know, there's a certain utility there. Now.
It's not entirely clear what role Peggy plays in Arnold's betrayal,
but she had long maintained a correspondence with a British
spy named John Andre and only a month after marrying

Peggy Benedict Arnold makes his first contact with the British
Army and they begin a secret correspondence in which Arnold
begins feeding them information about what's happening on the Patriot
side while also negotiating a very good settlement. If he
should actually be of some use to the British, is

he putting men in mortal danger? Absolutely, he is feeding
information about troop movements. He informs the British that the
Americans are woefully under manned in Charleston, South Carolina, that
Washington is unable to get the arms and men they
need to defend that city. At the same time that

this is happening, Arnold stands trial in a military court
for his profiteering activities. The court martial trial results in
a slap on the wrist for Arnold, but and this
is important. Under pressure from Congress General Washington for the
first time ever publicly rebukes Benedict Arnold. After this, there

is no turning back for Arnold, and I think Washington
was the one figure that was keeping him potentially in
the Patriot camp. In the summer of sev Arnold asks
for command of the strategic stronghold of West Point. Washington

still a believer in Benedict Arnold. Despite that, court martial
says yes, west Point became the locusts for the most
infamous betrayal in American history. Could he have gotten George
Washington killed? Yeah, he could have. I mean, this is
a psychopath. This is someone who really doesn't care what

ultimately will happen to those he at one time loved,
if not revered. Benedict Arnold breaks bad after the break,
but first before they went bad. Peanuts banned from schools,
kicked off of airplanes. In recent years, it hasn't been

smooth sailing for America's formerly favorite snack. E er Visits
among kids from food induced anaphylaxis have been on the
rise for years, and the proteins found in peanuts are
the biggest culprit. Indeed, because of allergies. Some schools have
declared themselves peanut free zones, and some airlines have put

peanuts on the no fly list. Quite a reversal of
fortune for a snack with a proud history. Native to
the Andes, peanuts were offered by Incas as a sacrifice
to the gods. Over the centuries, peanuts would become staples
in cuisines throughout Southeast Asia and India. Enslaved Africans were

the first to bring peanuts to North America. In both
Africa and America, peanuts were an important part of their diet.
Wealthier white Americans initially used peanuts primarily for animal feed,
but by the late eighteen hundreds, the peanut had become
a popular snack. P. T. Barnum started selling hot roasted

peanuts in his circus tents. On the sports front, peanuts
became one of the go to snacks for baseball bands.
Take me out with the braun, peanuts and bragg. I
don't carry if I never get Meanwhile, on the scientific front,
George Washington Carver, the first African American to hold a

master's in agricultural science, pioneered the use of peanuts to
restore nitrogen to soil depleted from the growing of cotton.
Peanuts were a hit, and not just with people. In
A boy named Elliott used a trail of peanut butter
candies to lure an extraterrestrial out of hiding and into

his home. But once peanut allergies began exploding in the
mid nine nineties, things got sticky. Planters killed off Mr
Peanut in a Super Bowl commercial. Right, maybe that, but

the peanuts future may not be so brittle. That's the
best I can come up with. An increasing number of
experts are suggesting that schools relax their restriction on peanuts,
and in the FDA approved a drug regimen to treat
peanut allergies. Maybe that's why later in that same Super Bowl,
Planter has brought Mr Peanut back, has a baby? Is

that a baby nut? Ps? A peanut isn't actually a nut,
it's a legume. I think Washington saw a lot of
himself in Benedicdonald. I'm talking with historian Nathaniel Philbrick. Temperamentally funded, mentally,

George Washington was a lot like benned Iccdonald if he
had not consciously changed his behavior. Philbrook says George Washington
had been a hothead and impulsive in his younger days,
but as he got older he figured out how to
manage his anger. He consciously strove to be someone he

naturally was, which is an extraordinary characteristic. I think most
of us are who we are and there's not much
we can do about it. And Arnold was that kind.
There was no filter with Arnold, no ability to step
back and say, wait a minute, you know, get Ahold
of your anger. Here you see Washington doing that all
the time. Arnold was incapable of that kind of filter.

He was who he was and who Benedict Arnold was
in the fall of seventeen eighty was the commander of
West Point, a vital defense for the Patriots and a
bargaining chip for Arnold. September, The Treason of Benedict Arnold,

You Are There. In one episode of CBS's seminal historical
reenactment series You Are There, host Walter Cronkite explained the stakes.
For five long years, the rebellious American colonies have been
fighting a desperate, defensive war. If the British forces now

occupy New York City were to strike northward, uniting with
British forces coming down from Canada. They could divide New
England from the southern colonies, cut the Americans in half,
and conquer each half separately. But in order to do
that they must take the Hudson Valley, and in order
to do that, they must first capture the American stronghold

on the River, the strategic center of the rebellion, the
forts at West Point. All things are as they were then,
except you are there. Can I just say I wish
I could call on Walter Cronkite to set the stage
for me on every historical turning point. In the special,
we watch as Arnold welcomes a British spy named John Andre.

He's the one Arnold's young wife Peggy had introduced him to.
Who's how smain that of a friend of his Majesty
and his Majesty's parlam Arnold reviews the terms of their
devilish deal about let us to business. Twenty pounds was
the agreement equivalent rank and the British Army while the
war continues, and half pay when it is concluded, military

commissions for my sons and a pension in London for
Mrs Arnold. In other words, the Brits would pay Arnold
twenty thousand pounds and make him a commander in their
army in exchange for West Point. What's more, Arnold told
the British when George Washington would be present at the fort,

putting his former ally, mentor and supporter in mortal danger.
On the way out the door, John Andre refuses to
shake Benedict Arnold's hand. You refuse my handswer, and yet
you are in this as deeply as I am. I
am a soldier honoring a trust. You are a soldier
betraying one. I hope, sir, you recognize the difference. That

response from Andre is what the kids today call a
pretty sick burn. It's also a bit of dramatic license
from the you are their producers, but it gets at
an important distinction between the two men. John Andrea was
loyal to something, in his case, the Crown. Arnold was
just a turn coat. Now, Benedict Arnold's plan almost works,

but long story short, Andre is intercepted by three Patriot militiamen.
They discover the deal's plans and take him prisoner. When
the word gets back to Arnold, he makes a run
for it and narrowly escapes a or the British warship
fittingly named the HMS Vulture. John Andre is hanged as

a spy on the banks of the Hudson River, and
American officers and British officers alike mourned Andrea's passing, viewed
him as the victim of Arnold's betrayal. Arnold starts a
new life as a brigadier general in the British Army.

He leads attacks on towns in Virginia and Connecticut that
leave them devastated, but make a little difference militarily. Of course,
as we all know, the British ultimately lose the war.
Arnold receives only a fraction of the agreed upon some
for his betrayal, since the plot to surrender West Point failed.

That's right, he didn't even succeed in selling himself out.
How did Americans react to the news of his treason?
This was I think incredible wake up call for the
American people. You know, they had spent all these years
fighting the British, only to discover that the real threat

is not the British but ourselves. This is a test
of character, This is a test of our ability to
function as an alternative to Great Britain, and are we
up to this? Just a year after the betrayal came
to light, the Americans are victorious in the Battle of Yorktown,

the last major conflict of the Revolutionary War. Arnold tried
to frame his defection as a noble cause in an
open letter he wrote to the American public, but his
name was ruined. American General Nathaniel Green lined Arnold's treason
to the fall of Lucifer. Ben Franklin compared him to

Judas and George Washington, once his greatest champion, or judge
his men to hang Benedict Donald if they ever captured him.
Arnold was burned in effigy in Philadelphia and in cities
and towns up and down the Atlantic seaboard. The graves
of his father were violated by the angry citizens of Norwich.

He became a figure as archetypal in his own way,
as Washington of an evil incarnate of the trader of
the Rock within the rock with it exactly, and I
think a troubling figure two, because everyone had to acknowledge
he was one of our best. As Washington would say

when he first heard, whom can we trust? Now. Arnold
lived out his final days in disrepute in London, and
after a long battle with gout, died June fourteenth, eighteen
o one. He was buried without military honors at sarah

Toga National Historical Park, site of perhaps his greatest feat
of heroism. There's a monument dedicated to Benedict Arnold. It's
a boot carved from stone, representing the leg he injured
in service of the Revolution. The monument describes a brilliant
soldier who was desperately wounded in the decisive battle at Saratoga,

but it doesn't bear his name. He has been written
out of the scriptures of America. That boot is the
only thing left of Arnold worth respecting. We leave you
now with one final installment of Before They Went Bad, Satan,

get the behind me, Satan, let's face it. Satan has
an image problem when blamed for the fall of man
gets laid at your feet. That can happen, but let's
give the devil his you. Before descending into hell and
getting branded lord of the underworld, Satan was riding high

as an angel in heaven. He had fame, wisdom, authority,
and power, and he was great looking. The poet John
Milton describes a being with hair that bristles like the
tail of a comet. In fact, Satan's alias Lucifer means
light bringer. But Satan became blinded by that light, grew

resentful of God, and began viewing himself as an equal
to God. Is it possible that Satan loved God too much?
Was he actually jealous of God's love for those far
less perfect beings known as humans? Some believe so. Regardless,
Satan's designs didn't endear him to his creator, who kicked

him out of the house and down into Hell. In time,
Satan reinvented himself and began a fruitful career of leading
us into temptation. Here he is slithering around Eden in
a video series from the people behind the popular Beginner's Bible.
It's nice food, isn't it. Why not give it a shot?

Just a tiny, tiny key. God probably won't even notice.
Satan has always made for great reading material. He gets
name checked fifty six times, and the King James Bible
is the unlikely protagonist of Milton's Paradise Lost, in which
he proclaims better to reign and hell than serve in heaven.

He also pops up in Dante's Inferno in the infamous
Ninth Circle of Hell frozen into a block of ice.
The story of Satan's fall is a warning to the
venal and virtuous alike. Disregard your better angels, and you
too can be in for quite a tumble. So times
I think we're not recome. We are that there's such

a big world up there, I'd like to give it
a trung. Now. My favorite modern depiction of Satan comes
in South Park movie. This Satan is tender and love lorn,
is emotionally abusive relationship with Saddam Hussein, and badly disenchanted

with the nether world. This Satan longs to quit his
fiery home and to send to brighter, earthly shores. I

really hope you enjoyed this mobituary. May I ask all
you loyal listeners to please rate and review our or podcast.
You can also follow Mobituaries on Facebook and Instagram, and
you can follow me on Twitter at Morocca. Here all
new episodes of Mobituaries Wednesdays. Wherever you get your podcasts,
and check out Mobituaries Great Lives Worth Reliving, the New

York Times best selling book Now available in paperback and audiobook.
It includes plenty of stories not in the podcast. This
episode of Mobituaries was produced by Morocca, Jake Harper, Aaron Shrank,
and Wilcome Martinez Cacceto. It was edited by Moral Walls
and engineered by Josh Hahn, with fact checking by Naomi Barr.

Our production company is Neon Humm Media. Our archival producer
is Jamie Benson. Our theme music is written by Daniel Hart.
Indispensable support from Craig Swaggler, Dustin Gervei, Alan Peg, Reggie
Basil and everyone at CBS News Radio. Special thanks to
Robert Marston, Maureen Dowd, David Dacovny, and Alberto Rebina. The Indubitable.

Aaron Shrink is our senior producer. Executive producers for Mobituaries
include Steve Raises and Morocca. The series is created by
Yours Truly and as always, thanks to Rand Morrison and
John carp for helping breathe life into Mobituaries
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