By D. Cox
“Condemnation without investigation is the height of ignorance.” – Albert Einstein
This cartoon, Einstein takes up the sword – published in 1933 by Brooklyn Eagle, shows Albert Einstein, who has shed his wings (labeled “Non- Resistant Pacifism”) standing next to a pillar labeled “World Peace.” He is rolling up his sleeves and holding a sword labeled “Preparedness.”
Einstein was an outspoken and world renewed pacifist. In 1919, when his Theory of Relativity propelled him to international fame, he used his success as a platform to promote his social agenda. Twice, he left his membership in the League of Nations because it would not stand on diplomacy alone. Einstein hated war; as a Swiss- German Jew, he had seen the results of World War I and detested it.
During the rise of the Nazi Party at the end of 1930, Einstein stood his pacifist ground. It was during this time that he visited the United States and made his famous ’2%’ speech.
In countries where conscription exists, the true pacifist must refuse military duty. In countries where compulsory military service does not exist, true pacifists must publicly declare that they will not take up arms in any circumstances…. The timid may say, ‘What’s the use? We’ll be sent to prison.’ To them I say: even if only two per cent announced their refusal to fight, governments would be powerless.
Einstein finally left Germany in 1933 after Hitler was announced as High Chancellor of the Nazi Party. It was then that he began to see the evil rising to the top of the Third Reich. Einstein renounced his German citizenship and officially became a United States Citizen. He stopped preaching pacifism and issued statements calling on the friends of civilization to unite against the oppression of Jews in Germany.
I loathe all armies and any kind of violence; yet I’m firmly convinced that at present these hateful weapons offer the only effective protection. Should Nazi militarism prevail, you can be sure that the last remnants of personal freedom in Europe will be destroyed.
You see, sometimes evil cannot be fought with words alone. Evil cannot be confined to logic. A beautiful Hollywood example quote would be when Batman’s Alfred said “Some men just want to see the world burn”. You see, evil does not come knocking dressed as the devil, or else who would let him in? Jesus Christ said it best: “Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves” – Matthew 7:15.
Einstein discovered that after dedicating his life to rid the world of war, the countries he loved so dear needed weapons of war in order to fight back and defend themselves to create that peace that he so nobly fought for. We can find relevance in the wisdom of Einsteins’ words if you are listening. He scribed the sentiment below in a book he autographed in 1946:
Children do not listen to the wisdom of their elders. Nations do not listen to history. The bitter lessons of the past must ever be learned anew.
Albert Einstein is world renowned for his breakthroughs in science – but the title quote above, “Condemnation without investigation is the height of ignorance” so often attributed to scientific achievement and exploration was not directed to them. Albert Einstein was not speaking to scientists; he was speaking to pacifists – from experience.
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Read more about it by visiting the research and source links below:
Library of Congress: Einstein takes up the Sword: http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/acd1996005205/PP/
Good general historical overview: http://www.ppu.org.uk/learn/infodocs/people/pp-einstein1.html
Einstein on Politics: His Private Thoughts And Public Stands on Nationalism, Zionism, War, Peace, and The Bomb. By David E. Rowe and Robert J. Schulmann. Available at: http://books.google.com/books?id=AIHgK-p6mhgC&pg
Albert Einstein: Pacifism, the bomb, and the social responsibility of scientists, byMarcie Fairchild http://filebox.vt.edu/users/mdfairc/portfolio/Assessments/Assessment8/AlbertEinstein.pdf
Source: FULL ARTICLE at Western Journalism