Reprint: The real problem is in the hearts of men, by Albert Einstein, No Date.
- Copy the text as is, including misspellings and abbreviations.
- Ignore formatting (e.g. spacing, line breaks, alignment)
- If you can't make out a word, enter "[illegible]"; if uncertain, indicate with square brackets, e.g. "[town?]"
- Transcribe letterhead information when possible.
- Click on Save below the box to save.
You don't have permission to transcribe this page.
America. The war which began with Germany using weapons of unprecedented frightfulness against women and children ended with the United States using a supreme weapon killing thousands at one blow. Many persons in other countries now look on America with great suspicion, not only for the bomb but because they fear she will become imperialistic. Before the recent turn in our policy I was sometimes not quite free from such fears myself. Others might not fear Americans if they knew us as we know one another, honest and sober nation can become drunk with victory. If Germany had not won a victory in 1870, what tragedy for the human race might have been averted! We are still making bombs and the bombs are making hate and suspicion. We are keeping secrets and secrets breed distrust. I do not say we should now turn the secret of the bomb loose in the world, but are we ardently seeking a world in which there will be no need for bombs or secrets, a world in which science and men will be free? While we distrust Russia's secrecy and she distrusts ours we walk together to rectain doom. The basic principles of the Acheson-Lilienthal Report are scientifically sound and technically ingenious, but as Mr. Baruch wisely said, it is a problem not of physics but of ethics. There has been too much emphasis on legalism and procedure; it is easier to denature plutonium than it is to denature the evil spirit of man. The United Nations is the only instrument we have to work with in our struggle to achieve something better. But we have used U.N. and U.N form and procedure to outvote the Russians on some occasions when the Russians were right. Yes, I do not think it is possible for any nation to be right all the time or wrong all the time. In all negotiations, whether over Spain, Argentina, Palestine, food or atomic energy, so long as we rely on procedure and keep the threat of military power, we are attempting to use old methods in a world which is changed forever. No one gainsays that the United Nations Organization at times gives great evidence of eventually justifying the desperate hope that millions have in it. But time is not given to us in solving the problems science and war have brought. Powerful forces in the political world are moving swiftly toward crisis. When we look back to the end of the war it does not seem ten months-it seems ten years ago! Many leaders express well the need for world authority and an eventual world government, but actual planning and action to this end have been appallingly slow. Private organizations anticipate the future, but government agencies seem to like in the past. In working away from nationalism toward a supra-nationalism, for example, it is obvious that the national spirit will survive longer in armies than anywhere else. This might be tempered in the United Nations military forces by mixing the various units together, but certainly not by keeping a Russian unit intact side by side with an intact American unit, with the usual inter-unit competition added to the national spirit of the soldiers inthis world enforcement army. But if the military staffs of the U.N. are working out concrete proposals along these lines, for a true internationally minded force, I have yet to read of it. Similarly, we are plagued in the present world councils over the question of representation. It does not seem fair to some, for example, that each small Latin-American nation should have a vote while much larger nations are also limited to one vote. On the other hand, representation on a population basis may seem unfair to the highly developed states, because surely great mases of ignorant, backward peoples should not carry as much voice in the complicated technology of our world as those with greater experience. Fremont Rider in an excellent book, "The Great Dilemma of World Organizations," discusses the idea of representation on the basis of education and literacy-number of teachers, physicians, and so on. Backward nations looking forward to greater power in the councils of men would be told, "To get more votes you must earn them." These and a hundred other questions concerning the desirable evolution of the world seem to be getting very little attention. Meanwhile, men high in government propose defense or war measures which would not only compel us to live in a universal atmosphere of fear but would cost untold billions of dollars and ultimately destroy our American free way of life-even before a war. To retain even a temporary total security in an age of total war, government will have to secure total control. Restrictive measures will be required by the necessities of the situation, not through the conspiracy of wilful men. Starting with the fantastic guardianship now imposed on innocent physics professors, outmoded thinkers will insidiously change men's lives more com
You don't have permission to discuss this page.