“Since it is now physically and metaphysically demonstrable that the chemical elements resources of Earth already mined or in recirculation, plus the knowledge we now have, are adequate to the support of all humanity and can be feasibly redesign-employed [...] to support all humanity at a higher standard of living than ever before enjoyed by any human, war is now and henceforth murder. All weapons are invalid. Lying is intolerable. All politics are not only obsolete but lethal.”
R Buckminster Fuller
“At this point I should make it clear that while I have tried in these last few minutes to give a voice to the voiceless in [the country we are fighting] and to understand the arguments of those who are called “enemy,” I am as deeply concerned about our own troops there as anything else. For it occurs to me that what we are submitting them to in [the country we are fighting] is not simply the brutalizing process that goes on in any war where armies face each other and seek to destroy. We are adding cynicism to the process of death, for they must know after a short period there that none of the things we claim to be fighting for are really involved. Before long they must know that their government has sent them into a struggle among [the people of the country we are fighting], and the more sophisticated surely realize that we are on the side of the wealthy, and the secure, while we create a hell for the poor.
“Somehow this madness must cease. We must stop now. I speak as a child of [my deity] and brother to the suffering poor of [the country we are fighting]. I speak for those whose land is being laid waste, whose homes are being destroyed, whose culture is being subverted. I speak for the poor of [this country] who are paying the double price of smashed hopes at home, and death and corruption in [the country we are fighting]. I speak as a citizen of the world, for the world as it stands aghast at the path we have taken. I speak as one who loves [this country], to the leaders of our own nation: The great initiative in this war is ours; the initiative to stop it must be ours.
“This is the message of the great [religious] leaders of [the country we are fighting]. Recently one of them wrote these words, and I quote:
“”Each day the war goes on the hatred increases in the heart of [our people] and in the hearts of those of humanitarian instinct. [The country invading us is] forcing even their friends into becoming their enemies. It is curious that [their leaders], who calculate so carefully on the possibilities of military victory, do not realize that in the process they are incurring deep psychological and political defeat. The image of [the country invading us] will never again be the image of revolution, freedom, and democracy, but the image of violence and militarism.”
“If we continue, there will be no doubt in my mind and in the mind of the world that we have no honorable intentions in [the country we are fighting]. If we do not stop our war against the people of [the country we are fighting] immediately, the world will be left with no other alternative than to see this as some horrible, clumsy, and deadly game we have decided to play. The world now demands a maturity of [this country] that we may not be able to achieve. It demands that we admit that we have been wrong from the beginning of our adventure in [the country we are fighting], that we have been detrimental to the life of the [people of the country we are fighting]. The situation is one in which we must be ready to turn sharply from our present ways. In order to atone for our sins and errors in [the country we are fighting], we should take the initiative in bringing a halt to this tragic war.”
Incidental and largely irrelevant contextual details of this speech:
Date of delivery – April 4 1967
Spoken by – Martin Luther King Jr
[the country we are fighting] – Vietnam
[this country] – America
[religion (of country we are fighting)] – Buddhism
[my deity] – God
“You do not become a ‘dissident’ just because you decide one day to take up this most unusual career. You are thrown into it by your personal sense of responsibility, combined with a complex set of external circumstances. You are cast out of the existing structures and placed in a position of conflict with them. It begins as an attempt to do your work well, and ends with being branded an enemy of society.”