„Extremely powerful bombs“

2. August 2017


„This new phenomenon would also lead to the construction of bombs, and it is conceivable – though much less certain – that extremely powerful bombs of a new type may thus be constructed. A single bomb of this type, carried by boat and exploded in a port, might very well destroy the whole port together with some of the surrounding territory. However, such bombs might very well prove to be too heavy for transportation by air“.

This are words of Albert Einstein, written in a letter to Franklin Delano Roosevelt, dated August 2nd 1939 – one month ahead of World War Two –, warning the U.S.-President that Nazi-Germany could be able to build nuclear bombs soon, encouraging him to take action in this concern, i. e. funding a programme for the development of nuclear weapons in the U.S.: „In view of the situation you may think it desirable to have more permanent contact maintained between the Administration and the group of physicists working on chain reactions in America“.

Six years later, the U.S. Army bombed Hiroshima and Nagasaki by nuclear force. Einstein was shocked about the fact, that scientific effort had let to military action. Hence, scientists could build, but not control nuclear power. In conclusion, Albert Einstein changed his mind, and formerly he is known as one of the most prominent post-war peace-activists.

(Josef Bordat)

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