Albert Einstein (1879-1955 -- 94 K
I do not know with what weapons World War 3 will be fought, but World War 4 will be fought with sticks and stones.
Through the release of atomic energy, our generation has brought into the world the most revolutionary force since prehistoric man's discovery of fire.
This basic force of the universe cannot be fitted into the outmoded concept of narrow nationalisms. For there is no secret and there is no defense; there is no possibility of control except through the aroused understanding and insistence of the peoples of the world. We scientists recognise our inescapable responsibility to carry to our fellow citizens an understanding of atomic energy and its implication for society. In this lies our only security and our only hope - we believe that an informed citizenry will act for life and not for death.
A. Einstein, Jan 22, 1947
Other miscellaneous Einstein stuff
If used in numbers, atomic bombs not only can nullify any nation's military effort, but can demolish its social and economic structure and prevent their re-establishment for long periods of time. With such weapons, especially if employed in conjunction with other weapons of mass destruction such as pathogenic bacteria, it is quite possible to depopulate vast areas of the earth's surface, leaving only vestigal remnants of man's material works.
Report of the Joint Chiefs of Staff,
Operations Crossroads, June 30, 1947
I have examined Man's wonderful inventions. And I tell you that in the arts of life man invents nothing; but in the arts of death he outdoes Nature herself, and produces by chemistry and machinery all the slaughter of plague, pestilence, and famine. The peasant I tempt today eats and drinks what was eaten and drunk by the peasants of ten thousand years ago; and the house he lives in has not altered as much in a thousand centuries as the fashion of a lady's bonnet in a score of weeks. But when he goes out to slay, he carries a marvel of mechanism that lets loose at the touch of his finger all the hidden molecular energies, and leaves the javelin, the arrow, the blowpipe of his fathers far behind. In the arts of peace Man is a bungler. I have seen his cotton factories and the like, with machinery that a greedy dog could have invented if it had wanted money instead of food. I know his clumsy typewriters and bungling locomotives and tedious bicycles: they are toys compared to the Maxim gun, the submarine torpedo boat. There is nothing in Man's industrial machinery but his greed and sloth: his heart is in his weapons.
The Devil speaking in Don Juan in Hell, Act III of Man and Superman
by George Bernard Shaw, 1902.
Substantially less profound quotes