— Rutherford B. Hayes American politician, 19th President of the United States (in office from 1877 to 1881) 1822 - 1893
Diary (4 January 1861)
Context: Disunion and civil war are at hand; and yet I fear disunion and war less than compromise. We can recover from them. The free States alone, if we must go on alone, will make a glorious nation.
„Once we have a war there is only one thing to do. It must be won. For defeat brings worse things than any that can ever happen in war.“
— Ernest Hemingway American author and journalist 1899 - 1961
Introduction to Men at War (1942)
„Mr. Greenwood, when moving the Amendment yesterday, told us that the war would shake many strongly held views. I fear that this war will do very much more than that. The war will bring about changes which may be fundamental and revolutionary in the economic and social life of this country. On that we are all agreed.“
— Anthony Eden British Conservative politician, prime minister 1897 - 1977
Speech http://hansard.millbanksystems.com/commons/1939/dec/06/debate-on-the-address to the House of Commons (6 December 1939)
„No device of man can remove the tragedy from war, yet it is a great advance when the guilty have far more to fear from war than the innocent.“
— George W. Bush 43rd President of the United States 1946
2000s, 2003, Mission Accomplished (May 2003)
— Christopher Hitchens British American author and journalist 1949 - 2011
A Long Short War: The Postponed Liberation of Iraq (Plume, 2003) [published in the United Kingdom as Regime Change]; quoted in "The Genocidal Imagination of Christopher Hitchens" http://mrzine.monthlyreview.org/seymour261105.html by Richard Seymour, Monthly Review (2005-11-26): On the 2003 invasion of Iraq
„Something indefinite is always worse than something definite, a strong fear that doesn't last very long is easier than one that's nebulous but doesn't go away.“
The Post Office Girl (published posthumously in 1982)
— Winston S. Churchill Prime Minister of the United Kingdom 1874 - 1965
Remarks at a White House luncheon (26 June 1954)
Quoted in Churchill Urges Patience in Coping with Red Dangers, The New York Times, June 27, 1954 http://select.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=F00A10FE3458117A93C5AB178DD85F408585F9,
Has been falsely attributed to Otto von Bismarck.
But Churchill’s official biographer, Sir Martin Gilbert, speaking of this quote, noted that Churchill actually said, "Meeting jaw to jaw is better than war." Four years later, during a visit to Australia, Harold Macmillan said the words usually—and wrongly—attributed to Churchill: “Jaw, jaw is better than war, war.” Credit: Harold Macmillan.
Post-war years (1945–1955)
„It is probably well that we had the war when we did. We are better off now than we would have been without it, and have made more rapid progress than we otherwise should have made… But this war was a fearful lesson, and should teach us the necessity of avoiding wars in the future.“
— Ulysses S. Grant 18th President of the United States 1822 - 1885
— Kameron Hurley American writer 1980
Source: God’s War (2011), Chapter 26 (p. 197).
— Otto von Bismarck German statesman, Chancellor of Germany 1815 - 1898
Quoted as a remark of Bismark without quotation marks, in Thinking About the Unthinkable in the 1980s (1984) by Herman Kahn, p. 136, a paraphrase of what Bismarck told the Reichstag on Feb. 9, 1876. Referring to March 1875, when the French National Assembly had decided to strengthen their army by 144,000 additional troops, Bismarck asked the deputies to imagine he had told them a year ago that one had to wage war without having been attacked or humiliated: „Würden Sie da nicht sehr geneigt gewesen sein, zunächst nach dem Arzte zu schicken (Heiterkeit), um untersuchen zu lassen, wie ich dazu käme, dass ich nach meiner langen politischen Erfahrung die kolossale Dummheit begehen könnte, so vor Sie zu treten und zu sagen: Es ist möglich, dass wir in einigen Jahren einmal angegriffen werden, damit wir dem nun zuvorkommen, fallen wir rasch über unsere Nachbarn her und hauen sie zusammen, ehe sie sich vollständig erholen – gewissermaßen Selbstmord aus Besorgniß vor dem Tode" (Would you not have been inclined very much to send for a physician in the first place and let him find out, how I with my long experience in politics could commit the colossal stupidity of [...] telling you: It is possible that in some years we might be attacked; to pre-empt that, let us overrun our neighbors and smash them before they have fully recovered [from the war of 1870/71] - in a way [commit] suicide from fear of death) reichstagsprotokolle.de 1875/76,2 http://www.reichstagsprotokolle.de/Blatt3_k2_bsb00018381_00571.html p. 1329-30
„Atomic war is bad but you know what’s even worse? Having had enough atomic wars that you can rank them in terms of horribleness.“
— James Nicoll Canadian fiction reviewer 1961
Review of Voodoo Planet: Solar Queen, book 3 by Andre Norton http://jamesdavisnicoll.com/review/oh-andre-norton-no, 2015
„War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things: the decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth a war, is much worse.“
— John Stuart Mill British philosopher and political economist 1806 - 1873
"The Contest in America," Fraser’s Magazine (February 1862); later published in Dissertations and Discussions (1868), vol.1 p. 26
Context: War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things: the decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth a war, is much worse. When a people are used as mere human instruments for firing cannon or thrusting bayonets, in the service and for the selfish purposes of a master, such war degrades a people. A war to protect other human beings against tyrannical injustice; a war to give victory to their own ideas of right and good, and which is their own war, carried on for an honest purpose by their free choice, — is often the means of their regeneration. A man who has nothing which he is willing to fight for, nothing which he cares more about than he does about his personal safety, is a miserable creature who has no chance of being free, unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself. As long as justice and injustice have not terminated their ever-renewing fight for ascendancy in the affairs of mankind, human beings must be willing, when need is, to do battle for the one against the other.
„I fear that, eventually, we are all going to become collateral damage in the war on drugs, or terrorism, or whatever war is in vogue at the moment.“
— James C. Nelson Montana Supreme Court Justice 1944 - 2006
Concurring opinion in Montana v. Pelvit (No. 03-572)