Quotes by Dwight D. Eisenhower

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Dwight David "Ike" Eisenhower (October 14, 1890 March 28, 1969) was an American soldier and politician. He served as the 34th President of the United States (19531961) as well as Supreme Commander of the Allied forces in Europe ...

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The emergence of this new world poses a vital issue: will outer space be preserved for peaceful use and developed for the benefit of all mankind? Or will it become another focus for the arms raceand thus an area of dangerous and sterile competition? The choice is urgent. And it is ours to make. The nations of the world have recently united in declaring the continent of Antarctica off limits to military preparations. We could extend this principle to an even more important sphere. National vested interests have not yet been developed in space or in celestial bodies. Barriers to agreement are now lower than they will ever be again.

I am convinced that the French could not win the war because the internal political situation in Vietnam, weak and confused, badly weakened their military position. I have never talked or corresponded with a person knowledgeable in Indochinese affairs who did not agree that had elections been held as of the time of the fighting, possibly 80 per cent of the population would have voted for the Communist Ho Chi Minh as their leader rather than Chief of State Bao Dai. Indeed, the lack of leadership and drive on the part of Bao Dai was a factor in the feeling prevalent among Vietnamese that they had nothing to fight for. As one Frenchman said to me, What Vietnam needs is another Syngman Rhee, regardless of all the difficulties the presence of such a personality would entail.
With 450,000 U. S. troops now in Vietnam, it is time that Congress decided whether or not to declare a state of war exists with North Vietnam. Previous congressional resolutions of support provide only limited authority. Although Congress may decide that the previously approved resolution on Vietnam given President Johnson is sufficient, the issue of a declaration of war should at least be put before the Congress for decision.
I say when you get into a war, you should win as quick as you can, because your losses become a function of the duration of the war. I believe when you get in a war, get everything you need and win it.
There are two kinds of mines; one is the personnel mine and the other is the vehicular mine. When we come to a mine field our infantry attacks exactly as if it were not there. The losses we get from personnel mines we consider only equal to those we would have gotten from machine guns and artillery if the Germans had chosen to defend that particular area with strong bodies of troops instead of with mine fields. The attacking infantry does not set off the vehicular mines, so after they have penetrated to the far side of the field they form a bridgehead, after which the engineers come up and dig out channels through which our vehicles can go.
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 plane 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.
I have serious doubts about the value of debates in a presidential election. They tend to be a test of reaction time rather than a genuine exposition of the participants philosophies and programs. Further, in debate, candidates tend to overstate their views. In the 1960 situation I had a very practical objection: Nixon was widely known; Kennedy was not; dramatic debates would therefore help Kennedy.
Legislation to apply the principle of equal pay for equal work without discrimination because of sex is a matter of simple justice.
But we know that freedom cannot be served by the devices of the tyrant. As it is an ancient truth that freedom cannot be legislated into existence, so it is no less obvious that freedom cannot be censored into existence. And any who act as if freedoms defenses are to be found in suppression and suspicion and fear confess a doctrine that is alien to America.
I make it a practice to avoid hating anyone. If someones been guilty of despicable actions, especially toward me, I try to forget him. I used to follow a practicesomewhat contrived, I admitto write the mans name on a piece of scrap paper, drop it into the lowest drawer of my desk, and say to myself: That finishes the incident, and so far as Im concerned, that fellow. The drawer became over the years a sort of private wastebasket for crumbled-up spite and discarded personalities.
Should a nation which attacks and occupies foreign territory in the face of United Nations disapproval be allowed to impose conditions on its own withdrawal?
War demands real toughness of fiber--not only in the soldiers that must endure, but in the homes that must sacrifice their best.