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Farewell Address - Dwight Eisenhower

Dispensa al corso di "Gli Stati Uniti nel XX secolo" del Prof. Daniele Fiorentino. Trattasi del Farewell Address, il discorso di addio del 34° Presidente degli Stati Uniti Dwight Eisenhower con il quale metteva in guardia i propri cittadini dall'accresciuto potere del cosiddetto apparato militar-industriale.

Esame di Gli Stati Uniti nel XX secolo docente Prof. D. Fiorentino





In this final relationship, the Congress and the Administration have, on most vital issues,

cooperated well, to serve the nation good, rather than mere partisanship, and so have

assured that the business of the nation should go forward. So, my official relationship with the

Congress ends in a feeling ­­ on my part ­­ of gratitude that we have been able to do so much


We now stand ten years past the midpoint of a century that has witnessed four major wars

among great nations. Three of these involved our own country. Despite these holocausts,

America is today the strongest, the most influential, and most productive nation in the world.

Understandably proud of this pre­eminence, we yet realize that America's leadership and

prestige depend, not merely upon our unmatched material progress, riches, and military

strength, but on how we use our power in the interests of world peace and human


Throughout America's adventure in free government, our basic purposes have been to keep

the peace, to foster progress in human achievement, and to enhance liberty, dignity, and

integrity among peoples and among nations. To strive for less would be unworthy of a free

and religious people. Any failure traceable to arrogance, or our lack of comprehension, or

readiness to sacrifice would inflict upon us grievous hurt, both at home and abroad.

Progress toward these noble goals is persistently threatened by the conflict now engulfing the

world. It commands our whole attention, absorbs our very beings. We face a hostile ideology

global in scope, atheistic in character, ruthless in purpose, and insiduous [insidious] in

method. Unhappily, the danger it poses promises to be of indefinite duration. To meet it

successfully, there is called for, not so much the emotional and transitory sacrifices of crisis,

but rather those which enable us to carry forward steadily, surely, and without complaint the

burdens of a prolonged and complex struggle with liberty the stake. Only thus shall we

remain, despite every provocation, on our charted course toward permanent peace and

human betterment.

Crises there will continue to be. In meeting them, whether foreign or domestic, great or small,

there is a recurring temptation to feel that some spectacular and costly action could become

the miraculous solution to all current difficulties. A huge increase in newer elements of our

defenses; development of unrealistic programs to cure every ill in agriculture; a dramatic

expansion in basic and applied research ­­ these and many other possibilities, each possibly

promising in itself, may be suggested as the only way to the road we wish to travel.

But each proposal must be weighed in the light of a broader consideration: the need to

maintain balance in and among national programs, balance between the private and the public

economy, balance between the cost and hoped for advantages, balance between the clearly

necessary and the comfortably desirable, balance between our essential requirements as a

nation and the duties imposed by the nation upon the individual, balance between actions of

the moment and the national welfare of the future. Page 2

Transcription by Michael E. Eidenmuller. Property of ©Copyright 2010. All rights reserved.



Good judgment seeks balance and progress. Lack of it eventually finds imbalance and

frustration. The record of many decades stands as proof that our people and their Government

have, in the main, understood these truths and have responded to them well, in the face of

threat and stress.

But threats, new in kind or degree, constantly arise. Of these, I mention two only.

A vital element in keeping the peace is our military establishment. Our arms must be mighty,

ready for instant action, so that no potential aggressor may be tempted to risk his own

destruction. Our military organization today bears little relation to that known of any of my

predecessors in peacetime, or, indeed, by the fighting men of World War II or Korea.

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 proportions. Added to this, three and a half million

men and women are directly engaged in the defense establishment. We annually spend on

military security alone more than the net income of all United States corporations.

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


In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted

influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military­industrial 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.

Akin to, and largely responsible for the sweeping changes in our industrial­military posture,

has been the technological revolution during recent decades. In this revolution, research has

become central; it also becomes more formalized, complex, and costly. A steadily increasing

share is conducted for, by, or at the direction of, the Federal government.

Today, the solitary inventor, tinkering in his shop, has been overshadowed by task forces of

scientists in laboratories and testing fields. In the same fashion, the free university,

historically the fountainhead of free ideas and scientific discovery, has experienced a

revolution in the conduct of research. Page 3

Transcription by Michael E. Eidenmuller. Property of ©Copyright 2010. All rights reserved.




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+1 anno fa

Corso di laurea: Corso di laurea magistrale in relazioni internazionali
A.A.: 2011-2012

I contenuti di questa pagina costituiscono rielaborazioni personali del Publisher Atreyu di informazioni apprese con la frequenza delle lezioni di Gli Stati Uniti nel XX secolo e studio autonomo di eventuali libri di riferimento in preparazione dell'esame finale o della tesi. Non devono intendersi come materiale ufficiale dell'università Roma Tre - Uniroma3 o del prof Fiorentino Daniele.

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