1½ pages, 4to, White House stationery. Fine." />
19 May 2011
KENNEDY, John (1917-1963), President. Typed letter signed ("John Kennedy"), as President, to Edwin P. Fifielski, Washington, 6 July 1962. 1½ pages, 4to, White House stationery. Fine.
"THIS IS THE AGE OF THE ORBIT, THE ATOM, AND THE INTERCONTINENTAL BALLISTIC MISSILE"
"Today we live in a world totally different than that ever experienced before," Kennedy tells Fifielski, the head of the American Veterans of World War II. JFK's letter was read out to his fellow vets at the group's 18th annual convention in Washington. "This is the age of the orbit, the atom, and the intercontinental ballistic missile; the age when a single explosive device may contain more destructive power than all the explosives used in World War I and II...We must meet our foreign commitments in a cool and responsible fashion; and we must show the world--particularly the uncommitted peoples--that we accept and act upon the great principles of democracy in a responsible fashion. hence, we must attend to the unfinished business of democracy--our school needs, the health of our senior citizens, the need to assure a vigorous economy--in a way that leaves no gap between what we say, and what we do..." A fine letter, signed as President, discussing the Cold War threats facing the United States, just three months before the Cuban Missile Crisis raised these issues to life and death urgency.
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