„We may gain something in our quest for peace if we recognize at once that war is not an abnormality. In the truest sense, it is not the mere play of brute force. It is the expression of the insistent human will, inflexible in its purpose.
When we consider the inability to maintain a just peace attests to the failure of civilization itself, we may be less confident of the success of any artificial contrivances to prevent war.“
„And happiness is thought to depend on leisure; for we are busy that we may have leisure, and make war that we may live in peace.“
— Aristotle Classical Greek philosopher, student of Plato and founder of Western philosophy -384 - -322 a.C.
Book X, 1177b.4
„But while we put our trust not on force but on a reign of law and the administration of justice, yet we know that the maintenance of peace can not but to a large extent be dependent upon our sentiments and desires,. In spite of all the treaties we may make and all the tribunals we may establish, unless we maintain a public opinion devoted to peace we can not escape the ravages of war. A determination to do right will be more effective than all our treaties and courts, all our armies and fleets. A peaceful people will have peace, but a warlike people can not escape war.“
— Calvin Coolidge American politician, 30th president of the United States (in office from 1923 to 1929) 1872 - 1933
„From time immemorial, people have talked about peace without achieving it. Do we simply lack enough experience? Though we talk peace, we wage war. Sometimes we even wage war in the name of peace.. . . War may be too much a part of history to be eliminated—ever.“
— Elie Wiesel writer, professor, political activist, Nobel Laureate, and Holocaust survivor 1928 - 2016
As quoted in "Is World Peace on the Horizon?", in The Watchtower (15 April 1991)
„We will not build a peaceful world by following a negative path. It is not enough to say "We must not wage war." It is necessary to love peace and sacrifice for it. We must concentrate not merely on the negative expulsion of war, but on the positive affirmation of peace.“
— Martin Luther King, Jr. American clergyman, activist, and leader in the American Civil Rights Movement 1929 - 1968
Context: We will not build a peaceful world by following a negative path. It is not enough to say "We must not wage war." It is necessary to love peace and sacrifice for it. We must concentrate not merely on the negative expulsion of war, but on the positive affirmation of peace. There is a fascinating little story that is preserved for us in Greek literature about Ulysses and the Sirens. The Sirens had the ability to sing so sweetly that sailors could not resist steering toward their island. Many ships were lured upon the rocks, and men forgot home, duty, and honor as they flung themselves into the sea to be embraced by arms that drew them down to death. Ulysses, determined not to be lured by the Sirens, first decided to tie himself tightly to the mast of his boat, and his crew stuffed their ears with wax. But finally he and his crew learned a better way to save themselves: they took on board the beautiful singer Orpheus whose melodies were sweeter than the music of the Sirens. When Orpheus sang, who bothered to listen to the Sirens? So we must fix our vision not merely on the negative expulsion of war, but upon the positive affirmation of peace. We must see that peace represents a sweeter music, a cosmic melody that is far superior to the discords of war.
„I believe that we have learned the importance of maintaining military strength as a means of preventing war. We have found that a sound military system is necessary in time of peace if we are to remain at peace. Aggressors in the past, relying on our apparent lack of military force, have unwisely precipitated war. Although they have been led to destruction by their misconception of our strength, we have paid a terrible price for our unpreparedness.“
— Harry Truman American politician, 33rd president of the United States (in office from 1945 to 1953) 1884 - 1972
„The United States, as the world knows, will never start a war. We do not want a war. We do not now expect a war. This generation of Americans has already had enough — more than enough — of war and hate and oppression. We shall be prepared if others wish it. We shall be alert to try to stop it. But we shall also do our part to build a world of peace where the weak are safe and the strong are just. We are not helpless before that task or hopeless of its success. Confident and unafraid, we labor on — not toward a strategy of annihilation but toward a strategy of peace.“
— John F. Kennedy 35th president of the United States of America 1917 - 1963
— Bill Watterson American comic artist 1958
„Declare it. Just the same way we declare war. That is how we will have peace... we just need to declare it.“
— John Lennon English singer and songwriter 1940 - 1980
„In this different kind of war, we may never sit down at a peace table. But make no mistake about it, we are winning, and we will win.“
— George W. Bush 43rd President of the United States 1946
Speech at the national convention of the American Legion, in Nashville, Tennessee (August 31, 2004) http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/5865710/
„Commerce in itself may favour peace, but when commerce is artificially shut out by a decree of Government from some promising territory, then commerce just as naturally favours war.“
— John Robert Seeley British historian 1834 - 1895
p. 110 https://books.google.com/books?id=Zsm3TLe1cAUC&pg=PA110
„In short, both at home and abroad, there may now be a temptation to relax. For the road has been long, the burden heavy, and the pace consistently urgent. But we cannot be satisfied to rest here. This is the side of the hill, not the top. The mere absence of war is not peace. The mere absence of recession is not growth. We have made a beginning — but we have only begun. Now the time has come to make the most of our gains — to translate the renewal of our national strength into the achievement of our national purpose.“
— John F. Kennedy 35th president of the United States of America 1917 - 1963
„In the days and in the years that are to come we shall work for a just and honorable peace, a durable peace, as today we work and fight for total victory in war. We can and we will achieve such a peace.“
— Franklin D. Roosevelt 32nd President of the United States 1882 - 1945
„Peace for us means the destruction of Israel. We are preparing for an all-out war, a war which will last for generations… We shall not rest until the day when we return to our home, and until we destroy Israel.“
— Yasser Arafat former Palestinian President, and Nobel Peace Prize recipient 1929 - 2004
Quoted in The Times, UK (5 August 1980).
„[The historical] development in the international system may almost be defined as the process by which we pass from stable war to stable peace.“
— Kenneth E. Boulding British-American economist 1910 - 1993
Kenneth Boulding (1975), International Systems: Peace, Conflict Resolution, and Politics. p. 375 as cited in: Bjørn Møller, Håkan Wiberg (1994) Non-offensive defence for the twenty-first century. p. 36
„The fruit of success in all these tasks would present the world with the greatest task, and the greatest opportunity, of all. It is this: the dedication of the energies, the resources, and the imaginations of all peaceful nations to a new kind of war. This would be a declared total war, not upon any human enemy but upon the brute forces of poverty and need. The peace we seek, founded upon decent trust and cooperative effort among nations, can be fortified, not by weapons of war but by wheat and by cotton, by milk and by wool, by meat and timber and rice.“
— Dwight D. Eisenhower American general and politician, 34th president of the United States (in office from 1953 to 1961) 1890 - 1969
Context: The details of such disarmament programs are manifestly critical and complex. Neither the United States nor any other nation can properly claim to possess a perfect, immutable formula. But the formula matters less than the faith -- the good faith without which no formula can work justly and effectively. The fruit of success in all these tasks would present the world with the greatest task, and the greatest opportunity, of all. It is this: the dedication of the energies, the resources, and the imaginations of all peaceful nations to a new kind of war. This would be a declared total war, not upon any human enemy but upon the brute forces of poverty and need. The peace we seek, founded upon decent trust and cooperative effort among nations, can be fortified, not by weapons of war but by wheat and by cotton, by milk and by wool, by meat and timber and rice. These are words that translate into every language on earth. These are the needs that challenge this world in arms.