Antiwar literary and philosophical selections

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Anti-war essays, poems, short stories and literary excerpts

American writers on peace and against war

George Santayana on war and militarism

George Santayana: Fatal wars: equally needless, equally murderous

George Santayana: Such blind battles ought not to be our battles

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George Santayana
From The Last Puritan: A Memoir in the Form of a Novel (1935)

Santayana_2

Her moral ideal was democracy, but a democracy of the elect. There could be no oppression in imposing uniformity on people who were really all alike; and such a society exacted from its members only what, if they were honourable, they would exact from themselves. She couldn’t conceive life except in a clan, where all the peers should have equal rights and similar virtues. Beyond the pale there could be nothing but utter darkness – an alien, heathen, unintelligible world, to be kept as remote as possible. If they couldn’t grow tea at…

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