Can we destroy the world to protect our nation?

A Reporter's Life Many times during the cold war and America's near hysteria over the Communist threat, . . .I thought a lot about the fervent anti-Communists' seldom questioned slogan: "Better Dead than Red." That sort of deeply patriotic sentiment, it seems to me, might have had some rationale in the days when wars had winners and loosers. But does it stand up in the nuclear age, when a massive exchange of bombs would cause such great losses, even, perhaps, the destruction of life on earth as we know it?

It does not seem to me unpatriotic to offer the possibility that it might be better to be Red than dead, under those nuclear circumstances. We all know of the transient nature of governments and the philosophies that inspire them. The collapse of the Soviet version of Communism proves that point, but even if the Red dictatorship had lasted with all of its horrors for a couple of centuries, would that not have been preferable to a world altered forever by nuclear poison. Does any one country have the right to destroy humanity in its own national interest?

I think I would rather be dead than Red, but I'm not at all sure that my personal preference, or even that of a whole generation, should be a basis for sound foreign policy.

from A Reporter's Life; Alfred A. Knopf
also available in Large Print and Paperback

Cronkite at Nuremburg

fromWar Department Film Bulletin (F.B No.184):
produced by Army Pictorial Service Signal Corps

Psychiatric Procedures in the Combat Area

NARRATOR: For every four men wounded, one soldier will become a psychiatric casualty. Such men may be shaking or crying, but more often they are just very tired and dirty and depressed. They are unnerved and have no initiative. They're not quitters, but are truly ill.

Army Psychiatric INTERVIEWER: Tell me soldier, what's your trouble?

SOLDIER: I can't stand seeing people killed.

INTERVIEWER: What were you afraid of?

SOLDIER: Everything.

INTERVIEWER: What, in particular?

SOLDIER: [sniff]

INTERVIEWER: What, in particular?





SOLDIER: Dead people. Can't stand seeing them.

INTERVIEWER: I can't hear you.

SOLDIER: Can't stand seeing dead people.

quoted from
The American Experience - Guts and Glory - Battle of the Bulge transcript

Cronkite for President - Can we find someone, (someone over 35 years old), who we could most all agree on for our next President? List of Cronkite Links at this site.

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