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Readings: War hatred

O War, I hate you most of all because you lay your hands upon the finest qualities in human life, qualities that rightly used would make heaven on earth.

You take our spirit of courage and devotion, and instead of letting it be a benediction to the world, you use it to burn cities and sack cathedrals and slay men.

You take our loyalties that well used would would redeem the world, and you harness them to a movement which inevitably means the murder of women and children and the starving of whole populations.

You take our religion, and to help your deadly work you teach us to pray, as old barbarians, before our Lord had come, prayed to their idols as the gods of war.

You take our science, the fruit of our dedicated intelligence, and you make even of that an effective minister of hate.

This is the deepest charge against you, that you take our noblest powers and prostitute them to destructive ends.

(Harry Emerson Fosdick, 1933)