"Were the Soviet Union to sink tomorrow under the waters of the ocean, the American military-industrial establishment would have to go on, substantially unchanged, until some other adversary could be invented. Anything else would be an unacceptable shock to the American economy."
George F. Kennan
(1904-2005) US advisor, diplomat, political analyst, and Pulitzer-prize winning historian, Professor Emeritus at the Institute for Advanced Study and former US Ambassador to the Soviet Union.
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Reader comments about this quote:
Now that the Romans are bankrupt a second time, they will have to withdraw the legions from 'across the Danube' again.
 -- Anonymous, Norfolk     
    Does anyone remember "The Report From Iron Mountain?" It came out in the late 60's - early 70's and spoke to this theme. It had the right look and format. I read it and was impressed. Recently, I learned that it was phony and a hoax. I have no way of knowing whether Kennan read it, created it, etc. It's like the sub-liminal Coke ads and the Loch Ness Monster. You just never know for sure anymore.
     -- J. B. Wulff, Bristol, CT     
    I don't know the extent of the shock but it couldn't be any worse than Mr. Obamunist Goodwrench the assassin's economic applications. The imperialist war of aggression in North Africa is just another example of the quote's accuracy. When was the last 'Peace Prize' revoked? hmmm
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
    And speaking of the Peace Prize, it became an idiotic joke when Gore and Obama got it.
     -- jim k, Austin, Tx     
    Ex military myself I have seen the large waste vast armies can be. I feel we can cut the size of our military manpower greatly, but keep up then R&D so our enimies can be destroyed with the push of a few buttons. We cannot afford these 10 year conflicts now or before.
     -- cal, lewisville, tx     
    And boy, did they find one! Watch out Pakistan you may be next - though China may stop that - we'll just have to see. Is America wanting WWIII?
     -- Robken     
    As long as US foreign policy continues to be waging war in oil-rich nations for their 'own protection' the more the US follows the road to 'evil empire' status. The German people, too, were unable to stop Hitler's militaristic acts once he acquired totalitarian power -- our own government is doing the same thing.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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