IMPEACH GEORGE BUSH!! The Bulldog Manifesto Forgotten in Iraq: Eisenhower's <i>Cross of Iron</i> - The Bulldog Manifesto

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Monday, October 17, 2005

Forgotten in Iraq: Eisenhower's Cross of Iron

Recently, many bloggers have reminded us of President Eisenhower's 1961 speech wherein he presciently warned us of the need to "guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex."

But there is another speech by President Dwight D. Eisenhower that is just as timeless, and perhaps just as important. It is known as the Cross of Iron speech.

In that speech, delivered in 1953 to the American Society of Newspaper Editors, Eisenhower humanely set forth five precepts which the United States should be governed by:
"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."
Today, as our military occupies Iraq, and as our government attempts to impose a form of government and economy on the people of Iraq, we must ask ourselves-- 'what happened to these precepts?' Why have they been so ignored?

Could it be that, as Eisenhower warned us, the military-industrial complex has "acquired unwarranted influence"? Examining current events in light of Eisenhower's Cross of Iron speech, can there be any other explanation?
"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 in 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."
Now that we have already spent approximately $220 billion dollars on the war in Iraq, it bears asking-- 'How many schools could we have constructed?'

How many homes could we have built?

How many bushels of wheat could we have purchased to feed the hungry?

How many hospitals to aid the sick?
"This is one of those times in the affairs of nations when the gravest choices must be made, if there is to be a turning toward a just and lasting peace.

It is a moment that calls upon the governments of the world to speak their intentions with simplicity and with honesty.

It calls upon them to answer the questions that stirs the hearts of all sane men: is there no other way the world may live?"

How do YOU respond? Is there no other way?

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Top notch post, Bulldog.

The second reason made me laugh; only because of the lack of a single space between 'in' and 'effectual', although it seems so apt today ...

Pi.

There's another way. Stop this love of money, this feeling that anything we do in the pursuit of money and things is okay. Demand better from our leaders. Become the leaders. Practically, I am too cynical to think that it will ever happen.

The principle of spending money to be paid by posterity, under the name of funding, is but swindling futurity on a large scale.


Thomas Jefferson

American history is enough to guide and guard America throughout the history of humankind.

This site gives food for thought.

Good post

The Republican party is experiencing what I would refer to as De-Evolution.

Wow, the first excerpt that you present strike a close parallel to the words of the Dalai Lama during his lecture at Rutgers a few weeks back.

You can find the full video of that lecture here

Chuck,

What did the Dalai Lama say? I tried accessing the audio but it didn't work. Did he mention the Cross of Iron speech?

These are stirring words from Mr. Eisenhower... but didn't he promote John Foster Dulles to his Cabinet? The man who espoused "Nuclear Brinksmanship?" Didn't Ike let the CIA plan for the Bay of Pigs Invasion?

Still, his words make a compelling argument, even if his actions were different.

No, he didn't reference the Cross of Iron speech at all, but the message was the same: compared to 1000 years go, even 50 years ago, even 20 years ago, we are more interconnected with each and every nation today. The concept of waging war against your "enemy" is dated as we are all interdependent and interconnected on a global scale (points 1-2 in that first excerpt). In addition, he also mentioned the cost of waging war (the second excerpt).

If you can, definitely download the video. I thought it was a great lecture, not at all what I expected. It's a simple message, really, but the way he delivers it really resonates with me.

Thoughtful post, it's nice to run across someone who reads history in the blog-sphere.

Humanity's greatest flaw perhaps is our inability to learn from history, even recent history. By the time were old enough to have gained the wisdom to understand the deeper nuances of that history, we're ready to shuffle off this mortal coil, leaving it to the next generation to learn from what we've left behind.

And regardless of the volumes of knowledge we've accumulated in the form of history, philosophy, art, science etc., subsequent generations continue to struggle in their efforts to grasp the lessens of their forebears, and are continually forced to reclaim this hard-won ground for themselves.

Possibly unless or until our functional lifespans increased to the point where we can more effectively and perhaps more directly pass on this hard-earned wisdom to the young, and they are allowed sufficient time to accumulate and collate the all-important subtleties of this knowledge and develop their own wisdom, before it's their turn to grasp the reins of control and responsibility, it seems this cycle will continue.

While it can hardly be denied that we make persistent if slow progress, all too often the course of that progress is halted or reversed for a time and the price we pay seems always to be a heavy one.

But perhaps that is the lot of humanity and a necessary part of our evolution. Nevertheless this seemingly endless and often horrifically wasteful cycle being replayed again and again before my eyes has for me been extremely painful and disheartening to bear witness to... something I could surely have done without.

Sometimes I think it sucks being a Homosapien sapient. All things considered I would've rather been a fish, or maybe a seagull.

Aaron,

Thank you for the thoughtful response. :-)

New blog launched to expose the disreputable and dishonest American Bulldog breeders and kennels.

If you have a "horror story" when dealing with an American Bull Dog breeder or kennel PLEASE share it with us at http://americanbulldogblog.blogspot.com/

By doing so you will be providing valuable information to potential puppy buyers and help them avoid similar situation.

New blog launched to expose the disreputable and dishonest American Bulldog breeders and kennels.

If you have a "horror story" when dealing with an American Bull Dog breeder or kennel PLEASE share it with us at http://americanbulldogblog.blogspot.com/

By doing so you will be providing valuable information to potential puppy buyers and help them avoid similar situation.

Top notch post, Bulldog.

The second reason made me laugh; only because of the lack of a single space between 'in' and 'effectual', although it seems so apt today ...

Pi.

There's another way. Stop this love of money, this feeling that anything we do in the pursuit of money and things is okay. Demand better from our leaders. Become the leaders. Practically, I am too cynical to think that it will ever happen.

The principle of spending money to be paid by posterity, under the name of funding, is but swindling futurity on a large scale.


Thomas Jefferson

American history is enough to guide and guard America throughout the history of humankind.

This site gives food for thought.

Good post

The Republican party is experiencing what I would refer to as De-Evolution.

Wow, the first excerpt that you present strike a close parallel to the words of the Dalai Lama during his lecture at Rutgers a few weeks back.

You can find the full video of that lecture here

Chuck,

What did the Dalai Lama say? I tried accessing the audio but it didn't work. Did he mention the Cross of Iron speech?

These are stirring words from Mr. Eisenhower... but didn't he promote John Foster Dulles to his Cabinet? The man who espoused "Nuclear Brinksmanship?" Didn't Ike let the CIA plan for the Bay of Pigs Invasion?

Still, his words make a compelling argument, even if his actions were different.

No, he didn't reference the Cross of Iron speech at all, but the message was the same: compared to 1000 years go, even 50 years ago, even 20 years ago, we are more interconnected with each and every nation today. The concept of waging war against your "enemy" is dated as we are all interdependent and interconnected on a global scale (points 1-2 in that first excerpt). In addition, he also mentioned the cost of waging war (the second excerpt).

If you can, definitely download the video. I thought it was a great lecture, not at all what I expected. It's a simple message, really, but the way he delivers it really resonates with me.

Thoughtful post, it's nice to run across someone who reads history in the blog-sphere.

Humanity's greatest flaw perhaps is our inability to learn from history, even recent history. By the time were old enough to have gained the wisdom to understand the deeper nuances of that history, we're ready to shuffle off this mortal coil, leaving it to the next generation to learn from what we've left behind.

And regardless of the volumes of knowledge we've accumulated in the form of history, philosophy, art, science etc., subsequent generations continue to struggle in their efforts to grasp the lessens of their forebears, and are continually forced to reclaim this hard-won ground for themselves.

Possibly unless or until our functional lifespans increased to the point where we can more effectively and perhaps more directly pass on this hard-earned wisdom to the young, and they are allowed sufficient time to accumulate and collate the all-important subtleties of this knowledge and develop their own wisdom, before it's their turn to grasp the reins of control and responsibility, it seems this cycle will continue.

While it can hardly be denied that we make persistent if slow progress, all too often the course of that progress is halted or reversed for a time and the price we pay seems always to be a heavy one.

But perhaps that is the lot of humanity and a necessary part of our evolution. Nevertheless this seemingly endless and often horrifically wasteful cycle being replayed again and again before my eyes has for me been extremely painful and disheartening to bear witness to... something I could surely have done without.

Sometimes I think it sucks being a Homosapien sapient. All things considered I would've rather been a fish, or maybe a seagull.

Aaron,

Thank you for the thoughtful response. :-)

New blog launched to expose the disreputable and dishonest American Bulldog breeders and kennels.

If you have a "horror story" when dealing with an American Bull Dog breeder or kennel PLEASE share it with us at http://americanbulldogblog.blogspot.com/

By doing so you will be providing valuable information to potential puppy buyers and help them avoid similar situation.

New blog launched to expose the disreputable and dishonest American Bulldog breeders and kennels.

If you have a "horror story" when dealing with an American Bull Dog breeder or kennel PLEASE share it with us at http://americanbulldogblog.blogspot.com/

By doing so you will be providing valuable information to potential puppy buyers and help them avoid similar situation.

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