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President Kennedy the Peace-Monger


Myra Bronstein
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Administrative note: I didn't see this subject in the forum, or the index, or in search results.

Disclaimer: Sometimes I don't see stuff that's there.

Ok, I'm talkin' to someone about President Kennedy after a third person made the party-line claim that the President was a war-monger blah blah blah. And Someone makes an observation that I think is fantastic and I'd love to take credit for (dagnabbit). Someone states:

"I've been thinking lately that Kennedy's effort to go to the moon was a way to re-direct the military industrial complex away from war and into a peaceful endeavor.... I think it was a truly bold, brilliant move by President Kennedy to launch the space age."

And I think "Ooooo!" Beyond that I start looking at the President's speeches describing his vision for manned space exploration.

I found his speech to congress in which he announced his plans to go to the moon. That speech was shortly after the Bay of Pigs set-up so there was likely some image polishing/distraction going on in addition to the space race element. Also found his famous speech at Rice University in Houston.

I'll quote some excerpts of each speech. I'd love to get input from y'all on whether "Someone" is on to Something.

I'm presenting them in reverse chronological order because there's video/audio of the Rice speech, along with the transcript, which makes it very special. This video shows how "inspiring" (to quote Helen Thomas who regularly cites Kennedy as her favorite president), charismatic, poetic, and witty the President was. Highly recommended viewing.

And it's short, so it's very watchable... after we get past the stupefying introductions that is. Unfortunately two of the intros are from those winkin' co-conspirators Albert Thomas and LBJ (http://www.rense.com/general40/thewnk.htm ). (As an editorial aside, one of the worst things about researching the President's murder is seeing that LBJ thug behind him smirking.) Anyway, back to the point.

Text of President John Kennedy’s Rice Stadium Moon Speech, September 12, 1962

(Short speech with video and transcript here)

http://www1.jsc.nasa.gov/er/seh/ricetalk.htm

Excerpts:

“Those who came before us made certain that this country rode the first waves of the industrial revolutions, the first waves of modern invention, and the first wave of nuclear power, and this generation does not intend to founder in the backwash of the coming age of space. We mean to be a part of it--we mean to lead it. For the eyes of the world now look into space, to the moon and to the planets beyond, and we have vowed that we shall not see it governed by a hostile flag of conquest, but by a banner of freedom and peace. We have vowed that we shall not see space filled with weapons of mass destruction, but with instruments of knowledge and understanding.”

“Yet the vows of this Nation can only be fulfilled if we in this Nation are first, and, therefore, we intend to be first. In short, our leadership in science and in industry, our hopes for peace and security, our obligations to ourselves as well as others, all require us to make this effort, to solve these mysteries, to solve them for the good of all men, and to become the world's leading space-faring nation.

We set sail on this new sea because there is new knowledge to be gained, and new rights to be won, and they must be won and used for the progress of all people. For space science, like nuclear science and all technology, has no conscience of its own. Whether it will become a force for good or ill depends on man, and only if the United States occupies a position of pre-eminence can we help decide whether this new ocean will be a sea of peace or a new terrifying theater of war. I do not say the we should or will go unprotected against the hostile misuse of space any more than we go unprotected against the hostile use of land or sea, but I do say that space can be explored and mastered without feeding the fires of war, without repeating the mistakes that man has made in extending his writ around this globe of ours. There is no strife, no prejudice, no national conflict in outer space as yet. Its hazards are hostile to us all. Its conquest deserves the best of all mankind, and its opportunity for peaceful cooperation many never come again.”

(End of speech) “Well, space is there, and we're going to climb it, and the moon and the planets are there, and new hopes for knowledge and peace are there. And, therefore, as we set sail we ask God's blessing on the most hazardous and dangerous and greatest adventure on which man has ever embarked.”

President John F. Kennedy's Man on the Moon Speech

Special Message to the Congress on Urgent National Needs, delivered on May 25, 1961 before a joint session of Congress.

(Long speech)

http://history1900s.about.com/od/1960s/a/jfkmoon.htm

Excerpts:

“But while we talk of sharing and building and the competition of ideas, others talk of arms and threaten war.”

“I cannot end this discussion of defense and armaments without emphasizing our strongest hope: the creation of an orderly world where disarmament will be possible. Our aims do not prepare for war--they are efforts to discourage and resist the adventures of others that could end in war.”

"A third asset is our desire for peace. It is sincere, and I believe the world knows it. We are proving it in our patience at the test ban table, and we are proving it in the UN where our efforts have been directed to maintaining that organization's usefulness as a protector of the independence of small nations. In these and other instances, the response of our opponents has not been encouraging.

Yet it is important to know that our patience at the bargaining table is nearly inexhaustible, though our credulity is limited that our hopes for peace are unfailing, while our determination to protect our security is resolute. For these reasons I have long thought it wise to meet with the Soviet Premier for a personal exchange of views. A meeting in Vienna turned out to be convenient for us both; and the Austrian government has kindly made us welcome. No formal agenda is planned and no negotiations will be undertaken; but we will make clear America's enduring concern is for both peace and freedom--that we are anxious to live in harmony with the Russian people--that we seek no conquests, no satellites, no riches--that we seek only the day when "nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.”

(I feel like saying "amen.")

Edited by Myra Bronstein
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Hi Myra

I like your take on this.

Have you seen a short thread entitled Freedom From War - The United States Program for General and Complete Disarmament in a Peaceful World?

I still find JFK's disarmament proposals staggering for their audacious abandonment of nationalistic 'one-upmanship' in favour of a commonsensical, step-by-step approach to building global trust and securing worldwide disarmament.

I also find it remarkable how little comment this speech and the associated State Department Paper attracts.

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Hi Myra

I like your take on this.

Have you seen a short thread entitled Freedom From War - The United States Program for General and Complete Disarmament in a Peaceful World?

I still find JFK's disarmament proposals staggering for their audacious abandonment of nationalistic 'one-upmanship' in favour of a commonsensical, step-by-step approach to building global trust and securing worldwide disarmament.

I also find it remarkable how little comment this speech and the associated State Department Paper attracts.

I looked at your thread Sid. Almost a year ago you were noticing the same thing I've just noticed. In your case you're quoting his speech to the UN General Assembly--now at this URL: http://www.jfklibrary.org/Historical+Resou...ons09251961.htm

(they've moved it).

Here's another of his addresses to the UN: http://www.jfklibrary.org/Historical+Resou...bly09201963.htm

Between those speeches and the space race speeches it's getting quite apparent that the President, from the first months of his term to the end, was intent on peace and would not be dragged into a cold war or a hot war or any kind of war so that LBJ's Brown & Root could become Bush's Halliburton by raking in blood money. There's no way President Kennedy would get us mired in Vietnam or anyplace else; that was clear from the start, which meant he was a marked man from the start.

He was a true visionary, a real leader, and a peace president. The non-stop propaganda that claims he was cut from the same cloth as LBJ, that he would have sent tens of thousands of poor boys to Vietnam to fight a rich man's war, is brazen. And sadly quite successful. I have to dispute that very point with people nearly every time I post on any political forum.

Then and now the CIA & Bush/Rove propagandists have done very well using the tactic of accusing their opponent of the very things they're guilty of.

More people need to see, hear, read these speeches; read his documents and national security memos and relevant reports...

We need to put every accessible piece of video on youtube...

'Cause once people see and hear the man himself things will start to click. His own words are just the best evidence to show the reason he was murdered. 'Cause he was a damn peace-monger and the sociopath capitalists wouldn't stand for it.

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