Thursday, April 22, 2010


Sometimes others have already already put ideas into words better, and more concisely than I can. With that in mind I have some quotes below. I have chosen speakers with proven credentials.

I knew I could never again raise my voice against the violence of the oppressed in the ghettos without first having spoken clearly to the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today—my own government. For the sake of those boys, for the sake of this government, for the sake of the hundreds of thousands trembling under our violence, I cannot be silent...
–Martin Luther King, Jr., Riverside Church, NYC April 4, 1967

Of all the enemies to public liberty war is, perhaps, the most to be dreaded, because it comprises and develops the germ of every other. War is the parent of armies; from these proceed debts and taxes; and armies, and debts, and taxes are the known instruments for bringing the many under the domination of the few. In war, too, the discretionary power of the Executive is extended; its influence in dealing out offices, honors, and emoluments is multiplied; and all the means of seducing the minds, are added to those of subduing the force, of the people. The same malignant aspect in republicanism may be traced in the inequality of fortunes, and the opportunities of fraud, growing out of a state of war, and in the degeneracy of manners and of morals engendered by both. No nation could preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare.
–James Madison, "Political Observations", April 20, 1795; also in Letters and Other Writings of James Madison (1865), Vol. IV, p. 491

Somehow this madness must cease. We must stop now. I speak as a child of God and brother to the suffering poor of Vietnam. I speak for those whose land is being laid waste, whose homes are being destroyed, whose culture is being subverted. I speak for the poor of America who are paying the double price of smashed hopes at home and death and corruption in Vietnam. I speak as a citizen of the world, for the world as it stands aghast at the path we have taken. I speak as an American to the leaders of my own nation. The great initiative in this war is ours. The initiative to stop it must be ours.
-Martin Luther King, Jr., The Trumpet of Conscience, 1967

Allow the president to invade a neighboring nation, whenever he shall deem it necessary to repel an invasion, and you allow him to do so whenever he may choose to say he deems it necessary for such a purpose—and you allow him to make war at pleasure.
–Abraham Lincoln

I destroy my enemies when I make them my friends.
–Abraham Lincoln

Force is all-conquering, but its victories are short-lived.
–Abraham Lincoln

America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter, and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.
–Abraham Lincoln

Nothing will end war unless the people themselves refuse to go to war.
–Albert Einstein

Peace cannot be kept by force. It can only be achieved by understanding.
–Albert Einstein

The world is a dangerous place, not because of those who do evil, but because of those who look on and do nothing.
–Albert Einstein

Wars are not paid for in wartime, the bill comes later.
–Benjamin Franklin

A highwayman is as much a robber when he plunders in a gang as when single; and a nation that makes an unjust war is only a great gang.
–Benjamin Franklin, Speaking to Benjamin Vaughan, 14 March 1785.

I hope....that mankind will at length, as they call themselves responsible creatures, have the reason and sense enough to settle their differences without cutting throats...
–Benjamin Franklin

There never was a good war or a bad peace.
–Benjamin Franklin

Those who give up essential liberties for temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.
–Benjamin Franklin

We Americans have no commission from God to police the world.
–Benjamin Harrison, from an 1888 address to Congress

No nation ever had an army large enough to guarantee it against attack in time of peace, or ensure it of victory in time of war.
–Calvin Coolidge

War is never economically beneficial except for those in position to profit from war expenditures.
–Congressman Ron Paul

We will bankrupt ourselves in the vain search for absolute security.
–Dwight D. Eisenhower

War settles nothing.
–Dwight D. Eisenhower

I think that people want peace so much that one of these days government had better get out of their way and let them have it.
–Dwight D. Eisenhower

In politics, nothing happens by accident. If it happens, you can bet it was planned that way.
–Franklin Delano Roosevelt

I have included these quotes, most from people with credentials equal to the above, for varying reasons. I hope the author and/or the time makes my reason evident.

Make the lie big, make it simple, keep saying it, and eventually they will believe it.
–Adolph Hitler

Why should we hear about body bags, and deaths...I mean, it's not relevant. So why should I waste my beautiful mind on something like that?
–Barbara Bush, ABC's "Good Morning America," March 18, 2003.

You cannot be on one hand dedicated to peace and on the other dedicated to violence. Those two things are irreconcilable.
–Condoleeza Rice, Comment trying to convince mideast policy makers Russia, the EU and the UN to stop aid to the new Hamas Palestinian government; 1/30/06.

The question in my mind is how many additional American casualties is Saddam worth? And the answer is not very damned many.
–Dick Cheney, Speaking to the Discovery Institute after the first Gulf War, on 8/14/1992, when he was Secretary of Defense.

There are a lot of people who lie and get away with it, and that's just a fact.
–Donald Rumsfeld

Death has a tendency to encourage a depressing view of war.
–Donald Rumsfeld

I will conclude with these observations.
1. In my life we have been at war during these times.
Korean War 1950 - 1953
Second Indochina War (Vietnam War) advisers and sponsors only 1950 - 1960
Operation Blue Bat 1958
Second Indochina War (Vietnam War) 1960 - 1975
First Taiwan Strait Crisis 1954 - 1955
Second Taiwan Strait Crisis 1958
Bay of Pigs 1961
Operation Power Pack 1965 - 1966
Angolan Civil War 1975 - 1976
Nigerian Civil War 1981 - 1990
First Gulf of Sidra Incident 1981
Operation Urgent Fury 1983
Multinational Forces in Lebanon 1984
Operation Prairie Fire 1986
Operation El Dorado Canyon 1986
Iran-Iraq war 1989
Second Golf of Sidra Incident 1989
Operation Just Cause 1989 - 1990
Gulf War 1991
Somali Civil War 1992
Bosnian War 1992
Operation Uphold Democracy 1999
War on Terrorism 2001 - now
Second Liberian Civil War 2003
2004 Haiti rebelion 2004
Thus in my life we have not been involved in military conflicts during 15 of my 60 years.
1977 - 1980, 1982, 1985, 1987, 1988, 1993 - 1998, 2000

2. Children born during a time of peace are now at least 9 years old, and we have teenagers who can not remember a time of peace.

"No nation could preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare." James Madison

"Thus in my life we have not been involved in military conflicts during 15 of my 60 years." Stanford Smith

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