War Quotes (displaying: 1 - 30 of 6808 quotes )
While Leonidas was preparing to make his stand, a Persian envoy arrived. The envoy explained to Leonidas the futility of trying to resist the advance of the Great King's army and demanded that the Greeks lay down their arms and submit to the might of Persia. Leonidas laconically told Xerxes, "Come and get them.
If she says goodbye perhaps adieu. Adieu - like those old time songs she sang. Always adieu (and all songs say it). If she too says it, or weeps, I'll take her in my arms, my lunatic. She's mad but mine, mine. What will I care for gods or devils or for Fate itself. If she smiles or weeps or both. For me.
The supreme law of the State is self-preservation at any cost. And since all States, ever since they came to exist upon the earth, have been condemned to perpetual struggle? a struggle against their own populations, whom they oppress and ruin, a struggle against all foreign States, every one of which can be strong only if the others are weak? and since the States cannot hold their own in this struggle unless they constantly keep on augmenting their power against their own subjects as well as against the neighborhood States? it follows that the supreme law of the State is the augmentation of its power to the detriment of internal liberty and external justice.
I waited for him to say something more, but he was quiet."Was there something you wanted?" I asked.He didn't answer right away, but I could feel him struggling, so I waited."If I asked you something, would you tell me the truth?"It was my turn to hesitate. "I don't know everything," I hedged."You would know this. When we were walking... me and Jeb... he was telling me some things. Things he thought, but I don't know if he's right."Melanie was suddenly very in my head.Jamie's whisper was hard to hear, quieter than my breathing. "Uncle Jeb thinks that Melanie might still be alive. Inside there with you, I mean." Melanie sighed.I said nothing to either of them."I didn't know that could happen. Does that happen?" His voice broke and I could hear that he was fighting tears. He was not a boy to cry, and here I'd grieved him this deeply twice in one day. A pain pierced through the general region of my chest."Does it, Wanda?""Why won't you answer me?" Jamie was really crying now but trying to muffle the sound.I crawled off the bed, squeezing into the hard space between the mattress and the mat, and threw my arm over his shaking chest. I leaned my head against his hair and felt his tears, warm on my neck."Is Melanie still alive, Wanda? Please?"He was probably a tool. The old man could have sent him just for this, Jeb was smart enough to see how easily Jamie broke through my defenses.Jamie's body shook beside me. Melanie cried. She battered ineffectually at my control.But I couldn't blame this on Melanie if it turned out to be a huge mistake. I knew who was speaking now."She promised she would come back, didn't she?" I murmured. "Would Melanie break a promise to you?"Jamie slid his arms around my waist and clung to me for a long time. After a few minutes, he whispered. "Love you, Mel.""She loves you, too. She's so happy that you're here and safe."He was silent long enough for the tears on my skin to dry, leaving a fine, salty dust behind.
Ye elves of hills, brooks, standing lakes and groves,And ye that on the sands with printless footDo chase the ebbing Neptune and do fly himWhen he comes back; you demi-puppets thatBy moonshine do the green sour ringlets make,Whereof the ewe not bites, and you whose pastimeIs to make midnight mushrooms, that rejoiceTo hear the solemn curfew; by whose aid,Weak masters though ye be, I have bedim?dThe noontide sun, cal?d forth the mutinous winds,And?twixt the green sea and the azured vaultSet roaring war: to the dread rattling thunderHave I given fire and rifted Jov?s stout oakWith his own bolt; the strong-based promontoryHave I made shake and by the spurs pluc?d upThe pine and cedar: graves at my commandHave waked their sleepers, oped, and let?em forthBy my so potent art. But this rough magicI here abjure, and, when I have requiredSome heavenly music, which even now I do,To work mine end upon their senses thatThis airy charm is for, ?ll break my staff,Bury it certain fathoms in the earth,And deeper than did ever plummet sound?ll drown my book.
Thomas Jefferson once said: 'Of course the people don't want war. But the people can be brought to the bidding of their leader. All you have to do is tell them they're being attacked and denounce the pacifists for somehow a lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country.' I think that was Jefferson. Oh wait. That was Hermann Goering. Shoot.
But, when nothing subsists of an old past, after the death of people, after the destruction of things, alone, frailer but more enduring, more immaterial, more persistent, more faithful, smell and taste still remain for a long time, like souls, remembering, waiting, hoping, on the ruin of all the rest, bearing without giving way, on their almost impalpable droplet, the immense edifice of memory.
Hank was walking barefoot up the dock, carrying his sweatshirt over a freckled shoulder and his boots clamped between thumb and finger of that maimed hand. Lee marveled at the scamper of small muscles across the narrow white back, at the swing of the arms and the lift of the neck. Did it take that much muscle just to walk, or was Hank showing off his manly development? Every moment constituted open aggression against the very air through which Hank passed. He doesn't just breathe, Lee decided, listening to Hank's broken-nosed puffing, he gobbles the oxygen. He doesn't just walk; he consumes distance step by carnivorous step. Open aggression is what it is all right, he concluded. Yet couldn't help but notice the way those shoulders seemed to savor the swing of the arms, or the way those feel relished the feel of the dock. These people...am I one of these people?
I had become so quiet and so small in the grass by the pond that I was barely noticeable, hardly there. I sat there watching their living room shining out of the dark beside the pond. It looked like a fairy-tale functioning happily in the post-World War II gothic of America before television crippled the imagination and turned people indoors and away from living out their own fantasies with dignity. Anyway, I just kept getting smaller and smaller beside the pond, more and more unnoticed in the darkening summer grass until I disappeared into the 32 years that have passed since then.
What were he and his friends doing, really, other than hanging from a branch, sticking their tongues out to catch the sweetness? He thought about the people he knew, with their excellent young bodies, their summerhouses, their cool clothes, their potent drugs, their liberalism, their orgasms, their haircuts. Everything they did was either pleasurable in itself or engineered to bring pleasure down the line. Even the people he knew who were "political" and who protested the war in El Salvador did so largely in order to bathe themselves in an attractively crusading light. And the artists were the worst, the painters and the writers, because they believed they were living for art when they were really feeding their narcissism. Mitchell had always prided himself on his discipline. He studied harder than anyone he knew. But that was just his way of tightening his grip on the branch.
I reach for Prim in the twilight, clamp my hand on her leg and pull myself over to her. Her voice remains steady as she croons to Buttercup. "It's all right, baby, it's all right. We'll be OK down there." My mother wraps her arms around us. I allow myself to feel young for a moment and rest my head on her shoulder.
She laughs and looks out the window and I think for a minute that she's going to start to cry. I'm standing by the door and I look over at the Elvis Costello poster, at his eyes, watching her, watching us, and I try to get her away from it, so I tell her to come over here, sit down, and she thinks I want to hug her or something and she comes over to me and puts her arms around my back and says something like 'I think we've all lost some sort of feeling.
She had grasped the inner meaning of the Party's sexual puritanism. It was not merely that the sex instinct created a world of its own which was outside the Party's control and which therefore had to be destroyed if possible. What was most important was that sexual privation induced hysteria, which was desirable because it could be transformed into war fever and leader worship.
Executive Mansion,Washington, Nov. 21, 1864.Dear Madam,--I have been shown in the files of the War Department a statement of the Adjutant General of Massachusetts that you are the mother of five sons who have died gloriously on the field of battle.I feel how weak and fruitless must be any word of mine which should attempt to beguile you from the grief of a loss so overwhelming. But I cannot refrain from tendering you the consolation that may be found in the thanks of the Republic they died to save.I pray that our Heavenly Father may assuage the anguish of your bereavement, and leave you only the cherished memory of the loved and lost, and the solemn pride that must be yours to have laid so costly a sacrifice upon the altar of freedom.Yours, very sincerely and respectfully,A. Lincoln
Of course we would all like to "believe" in something, like to assuage our private guilts in public causes, like to lose our tiresome selves; like, perhaps, to transform the white flag of defeat at home into the brave white banner of battle away from home. And of course it is all right to do that; that is how, immemorially, thing have gotten done. But I think it is all right only so long as we do not delude ourselves about what we are doing, and why. It is all right only so long as we remember that all the ad hoc committees, all the picket lines, all the brave signatures in The New York Times, all the tools of agitprop straight across the spectrum, do not confer upon anyone any ipso facto virtue. It is all right only so long as we recognize that the end may or may not be expedient, may or may not be a good idea, but in any case has nothing to do with "morality." Because when we start deceiving ourselves into thinking not that we want something or need something, not that it is a pragmatic necessity for us to have it, but that it is a moral imperative that we have it, then is when we join the fashionable madmen, and then is when the thin whine of hysteria is heard in the land, and then is when we are in bad trouble. And I suspect we are already there.