Ladies and Gentleman, The President of the United States:
Good evening, my fellow Americans. We now stand ten years past the midpoint of a century that has now witnessed four major wars among great nations. Until the latest of our world conflicts the United States had no armaments industry. American makers of plowshares could, with time and as required, make swords as well, but we can no longer risk emergency improvisation of national defense. We have been compelled to create a permanent armaments industry of vast proportion. Added to this- three and a half million men and women are directly engaged in the defense establishment.
Now this conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence: economic, political, even spiritual is felt in every city, every statehouse, every office of the federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development yet we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources, and livelihood are all involved, so is the very structure of our society. In the councils of government we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military industrial complex.
The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals so that security and liberty may prosper together.
Editor in Chief, THL
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