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Tuesday, March 04, 2008

The Lesson We Forgot

Alright class.
Anyone know who President Eisenhower was?
Just for the hell of it, read these speeches and quotes. I know, it's a lot of stuff to read but as you read it remind yourself of a few facts no one debates.

1. He Was the Architect for D-day, the largest combat operation in history that begun the taking back of Europe from the Nazis.

2. He was a Republican.

3. The Military-industrial complex, was his quote given as a warning in his farewell speech to the American people at the end of his Presidency.

4. Think about the stuttering agenda driven speeches filled with fear and hate mongering that have played to the worst of our instincts rather than a true and sincere belief in the wisdom of the American citizen over these last 8 years.

5. A lot of what he warned us about has come to pass.

6. Those who do not know history are doomed to repeat it.

I would go a step farther and also say, a people who ignore their nations history will fall for arrogance masquerading as leadership, ignorance disguised as truth, aggression wrapped in the flag, and patriotic fever used as a cheap propaganda weapon against our own best interests.
When we live in a country that thinks, the surge is just a new energy drink, we are ALL in trouble.


Parts of Eisenhower's farewell speech.

We now stand ten years past the midpoint of a century that has witnessed four major wars among great nations. Three of these involved our own country. Despite these holocausts America is today the strongest, the most influential and most productive nation in the world. Understandably proud of this pre-eminence, we yet realize that America's leadership and prestige depend, not merely upon our unmatched material progress, riches and military strength, but on how we use our power in the interests of world peace and human betterment.

Throughout America's adventure in free government, our basic purposes have been to keep the peace; to foster progress in human achievement, and to enhance liberty, dignity and integrity among people and among nations. To strive for less would be unworthy of a free and religious people. Any failure traceable to arrogance, or our lack of comprehension or readiness to sacrifice would inflict upon us grievous hurt both at home and abroad.

Progress toward these noble goals is persistently threatened by the conflict now engulfing the world. It commands our whole attention, absorbs our very beings. We face a hostile ideology -- global in scope, atheistic in character, ruthless in purpose, and insidious in method. Unhappily the danger is poses promises to be of indefinite duration. To meet it successfully, there is called for, not so much the emotional and transitory sacrifices of crisis, but rather those which enable us to carry forward steadily, surely, and without complaint the burdens of a prolonged and complex struggle -- with liberty the stake. Only thus shall we remain, despite every provocation, on our charted course toward permanent peace and human betterment.

Crises there will continue to be. In meeting them, whether foreign or domestic, great or small, there is a recurring temptation to feel that some spectacular and costly action could become the miraculous solution to all current difficulties. A huge increase in newer elements of our defense; development of unrealistic programs to cure every ill in agriculture; a dramatic expansion in basic and applied research -- these and many other possibilities, each possibly promising in itself, may be suggested as the only way to the road we wish to travel.

But each proposal must be weighed in the light of a broader consideration: the need to maintain balance in and among national programs -- balance between the private and the public economy, balance between cost and hoped for advantage -- balance between the clearly necessary and the comfortably desirable; balance between our essential requirements as a nation and the duties imposed by the nation upon the individual; balance between actions of the moment and the national welfare of the future. Good judgment seeks balance and progress; lack of it eventually finds imbalance and frustration.

A vital element in keeping the peace is our military establishment. Our arms must be mighty, ready for instant action, so that no potential aggressor may be tempted to risk his own destruction.

Our military organization today bears little relation to that known by any of my predecessors in peacetime, or indeed by the fighting men of World War II or Korea.

Until the latest of our world conflicts, the United States had no armaments industry. American makers of plowshares could, with time and as required, make swords as well. But now we can no longer risk emergency improvisation of national defense; we have been compelled to create a permanent armaments industry of vast proportions. Added to this, three and a half million men and women are directly engaged in the defense establishment. We annually spend on military security more than the net income of all United States corporations.

This conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence -- economic, political, even spiritual -- is felt in every city, every State house, every office of the Federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development. Yet we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources and livelihood are all involved; so is the very structure of our society.

In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.

We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together.

Akin to, and largely responsible for the sweeping changes in our industrial-military posture, has been the technological revolution during recent decades.

In this revolution, research has become central; it also becomes more formalized, complex, and costly. A steadily increasing share is conducted for, by, or at the direction of, the Federal government.

Today, the solitary inventor, tinkering in his shop, has been overshadowed by task forces of scientists in laboratories and testing fields. In the same fashion, the free university, historically the fountainhead of free ideas and scientific discovery, has experienced a revolution in the conduct of research. Partly because of the huge costs involved, a government contract becomes virtually a substitute for intellectual curiosity. For every old blackboard there are now hundreds of new electronic computers.

Another factor in maintaining balance involves the element of time. As we peer into society's future, we -- you and I, and our government -- must avoid the impulse to live only for today, plundering, for our own ease and convenience, the precious resources of tomorrow. We cannot mortgage the material assets of our grandchildren without risking the loss also of their political and spiritual heritage. We want democracy to survive for all generations to come, not to become the insolvent phantom of tomorrow.

Down the long lane of the history yet to be written America knows that this world of ours, ever growing smaller, must avoid becoming a community of dreadful fear and hate, and be instead, a proud confederation of mutual trust and respect.

Such a confederation must be one of equals. The weakest must come to the conference table with the same confidence as do we, protected as we are by our moral, economic, and military strength. That table, though scarred by many past frustrations, cannot be abandoned for the certain agony of the battlefield.

Disarmament, with mutual honor and confidence, is a continuing imperative. Together we must learn how to compose differences, not with arms, but with intellect and decent purpose. Because this need is so sharp and apparent I confess that I lay down my official responsibilities in this field with a definite sense of disappointment. As one who has witnessed the horror and the lingering sadness of war -- as one who knows that another war could utterly destroy this civilization which has been so slowly and painfully built over thousands of years -- I wish I could say tonight that a lasting peace is in sight.

Happily, I can say that war has been avoided. Steady progress toward our ultimate goal has been made. But, so much remains to be done. As a private citizen, I shall never cease to do what little I can to help the world advance along that road.

So -- in this my last good night to you as your President -- I thank you for the many opportunities you have given me for public service in war and peace. I trust that in that service you find some things worthy; as for the rest of it, I know you will find ways to improve performance in the future.

You and I -- my fellow citizens -- need to be strong in our faith that all nations, under God, will reach the goal of peace with justice. May we be ever unswerving in devotion to principle, confident but humble with power, diligent in pursuit of the Nation's great goals.

To all the peoples of the world, I once more give expression to America's prayerful and continuing aspiration:

We pray that peoples of all faiths, all races, all nations, may have their great human needs satisfied; that those now denied opportunity shall come to enjoy it to the full; that all who yearn for freedom may experience its spiritual blessings; that those who have freedom will understand, also, its heavy responsibilities; that all who are insensitive to the needs of others will learn charity; that the scourges of poverty, disease and ignorance will be made to disappear from the earth, and that, in the goodness of time, all peoples will come to live together in a peace guaranteed by the binding force of mutual respect and love.

Selected quotes.

The substance of peace is a universal appreciation of human values.”
Speech at Belfast University, August 24, 1945

“We must strive for understanding and be ready to do our part in substituting cooperation for conflict.”
Speech for Freedom House, November 7, 1945

“I know of no more sincere pacifists than American soldiers and veterans.”
Speech to the American Legion, November 20, 1945

“To be strong nationally is not a sin, it is a necessity.”
Speech at American Legion Convention, Chicago, IL, November 20, 1945

“I hate war as only a soldier who has lived it can, only as one who has seen its brutality, its futility, its stupidity.”
Speech at Canada Club, Ottawa, Canada, January 10, 1946

“All must learn that in cooperation there is giving as well as receiving.”
Speech at Canada Club, Ottawa, Canada, January 10, 1946

“Until the peoples of the world understand and respect the interests of their neighbors, the victory will elude us.”
Speech at Canada Club, Ottawa, Canada, January 10, 1946

“I wish we could have an all-volunteer Army.”
Address Over CBS & Associated Broadcast Networks, January 18, 1946

“To remain at peace we must be a strong nation.”
Speech in Connection with Cancer Drive, Washington, DC, April 1, 1946

“In the scientific world the best of yesterday is the obsolete of today.”
Army Day Speech, Chicago, April 6, 1946

“It is the job of the men of the Armed Forces to see that the enemies of humanity cannot again make war.”
Army Day Speech, Los Angeles, April 6, 1946

“Small nations have as much right as large ones to feel secure.”
Remarks at Dinner of Cleveland Aviation Club, April 11, 1946

“The education of the officer never ends.”
Speech for Texas Agricultural & Mechanical College ROTC, April 21, 1946

“We must do all that we can toward progressive disarmament, for which I think we should all pray very sincerely.”
Remarks at General Commission on Army & Navy Chaplains, Washington, DC, April 24, 1946

“The security establishment of our democracy must always remain representative of our way of life.”
American Newspaper Publishers Association, New York City, April 25, 1946

“All must understand that military rank is a recognition of responsibility and not a ration book of personal privilege.”
American Newspaper Publishers Association, New York City, April 25, 1946

“From the time of Washington, American soldiers fighting and dying for this republic have had their inspiration in its championship of liberty.”
Georgia Bar Convention, Savannah, Georgia, May 24, 1946

“The Army of the United States was truly the people of the United States in action.”
Address to Reserve Officers' Association, Chicago, Illinois, June 2, 1946

“The wartime Army of the United States was a mass expression of America.”
>Address to Reserve Officers' Association, Chicago, Illinois, June 2, 1946

“On our future conduct depends the peace of the world for generations to come.”
Address to Reserve Officers' Association, Chicago, Illinois, June 2, 1946

“Soldiers apply an acid test to their officers that only the true leader can survive.”
>Address to Reserve Officers' Association, Chicago, Illinois, June 2, 1946

“War is not only destructive, it is sterile of positive result.”
Address to Reserve Officers' Association, Chicago, Illinois, June 2, 1946

“Our ideal today is a free, prosperous and cooperative world.”
Address to Army Ordnance Association, Detroit, Michigan, June 3, 1946

“The American tradition is to finish whatever we start, however hard the road.”
Material for NBC Address, June 4, 1946

“The freedom of the individual and his willingness to follow real leadership are at the core of America’s strength.”
Address at Norwich University, Northfield, Vermont, June 9, 1946

“The purpose of the United Nations is peace.”
Address at Norwich University, Northfield, Vermont, June 9, 1946

“Every nation is neighbor to all mankind.”
American Alumni Association, Amherst, Massachusetts, July 11, 1946

“Democracy is essentially a political system that recognizes the equality of humans before the law.”
Address to Constituent Assembly, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, August 8, 1946

“There is no strength equal to the strength of an enduring friendship.”
Address to Constituent Assembly, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, August 8, 1946

“The barriers to neighborliness are fear and prejudice spawned by ignorance.”
Address at Veterans Day, Nebraska State Fair, Lincoln, Nebraska, September 1, 1946

“There is no short cut or easy way to lasting peace.”
Address at Lafayette College, Easton, Pennsylvania, November 1, 1946
>
“The proudest human that walks the earth is a free American citizen.”
Talk at the Commercial Club of Chicago, May 21, 1948

“To blend, without coercion, the individual good and the common good is the essence of citizenship in a free country.”
Columbia University Inaugural Address, October 12, 1948

“The free individual has been justified as his own master; the state as his servant.”
Commencement Address, Columbia University, June 1, 1949

“There is nothing wrong with America that the faith, love of freedom, intelligence and energy of her citizens cannot cure.”
Commencement Address, Columbia University, June 8, 1949

“Misunderstanding among neighbors is perilous in the atomic age.”
Lecture at Columbia University, March 23, 1950

“Far better to risk a war of possible annihilation than grasp a peace which would be the certain extinction of free man’s ideas and ideals.”
Lecture at Columbia University, March 23, 1950

“The gamble of war lures the desperate, for even overwhelming defeat can hardly worsen their state.”
Lecture at Columbia University, March 23, 1950ont style="font-weight: bold;">

“To prevent the crime of war, all nations and all ideologies can unite without sacrifice of principle.’
Lecture at Columbia University, March 23, 1950

“We reject any insinuation that one race or another, one people or another, is in any sense inferior or expendable.”
Inaugural Address, January 20, 1953

“We must be ready to dare all for our country. For history does not long entrust the care of freedom to the weak or the timid.”
Inaugural Address, January 20, 1953

“A people that values its privileges above its principles soon loses both.”
Inaugural Address, January 20, 1953

“To be true to one’s own freedom is, in essence, to honor and respect the freedom of all others.”
State of the Union Address, February2, 1953

“We must be devoted with all our hearts to the values we defend.”
State of the Union Address, February2, 1953

“As our heart summons our strength, our wisdom must direct it.”
State of the Union Address, February2, 1953

“The seeds of hate and of distrust can be born on winds that heed no frontier or shore.”
Address to the Organization of American States, April 12, 1953

“No nation’s security and well-being can be lastingly achieved in isolation but only in effective cooperation with fellow-nations.”
Address to the American Society of Newspaper Editors, April 16, 1953

“Any nation’s attempt to dictate to other nations their form of government is indefensible.”
Address to the American Society of Newspaper Editors, April 16, 1953

“Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed.”
Address to the American Society of Newspaper Editors, April 16, 1953

“We live in an age of peril.”
Radio Address to the American People, May 9, 1953

“The plain truth is that security is planned, not blindly bought.”
Radio Address to the American People, May 9, 1953


A speech given in 1953 to the news paper editors of America.

The way chosen by the United States was plainly marked by a few clear precepts, which govern its conduct in world affairs.

First: No people on earth can be held, as a people, to be enemy, for all humanity shares the common hunger for peace and fellowship and justice.

Second: No nation's security and well-being can be lastingly achieved in isolation but only in effective cooperation with fellow-nations.

Third: Any nation's right to form of government and an economic system of its own choosing is inalienable.

Fourth: Any nation's attempt to dictate to other nations their form of government is indefensible.

And fifth: A nation's hope of lasting peace cannot be firmly based upon any race in armaments but rather upon just relations and honest understanding with all other nations.

In the light of these principles the citizens of the United States defined the way they proposed to follow, through the aftermath of war, toward true peace.

What can the world, or any nation in it, hope for if no turning is found on this dread road?

The worst to be feared and the best to be expected can be simply stated.

The worst is atomic war.

The best would be this: a life of perpetual fear and tension; a burden of arms draining the wealth and the labor of all peoples; a wasting of strength that defies the American system or the Soviet system or any system to achieve true abundance and happiness for the peoples of this earth.

Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed.

This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children. The cost of one modern heavy bomber is this: a modern brick school in more than 30 cities. It is two electric power plants, each serving a town of 60,000 population. It is two fine, fully equipped hospitals.

It is some 50 miles of concrete highway. We pay for a single fighter with a half million bushels of wheat. We pay for a single destroyer with new homes that could have housed more than 8,000 people.

This, I repeat, is the best way of life to be found on the road the world has been taking.

This is not a way of life at all, in any true sense. Under the cloud of threatening war, it is humanity hanging from a cross of iron. These plain and cruel truths define the peril and point to the hope that comes with this spring of 1953.

Me again class. Remember, he was a man who was in war and knew it's corrosive effect on the human soul and he was a Republican that advocated peace and understanding as the bravest way forward for any Nation.

2 comments:

Dean said...

WTF? Is it Ike's birthday?

Joe said...

No. It's not his B-day or anything.
I saw something about him on the History Channel that got me thinking how far we have fallen.
I started reading everything I could about him on the internet.
The man could speak, had seen the evil of war and warned us against the type of society Bush & Company have talked a majority of this nation into with lies, fear and God on their side.
Hey, it's not all Ha Ha all the time.