Address of President Hoover

November 11, 1929
Entire Report

My Fellow Countrymen:

Eleven years have gone by since the day of the armistice, when the guns ceased, firing. It was a day of thanksgiving that marked the ending of the shambles of the trenches. For us it will be remembered always as a day of pride; pride in the memory of those who suffered and of those who made the last sacrifice of life in that great cause; pride in the proven velour of our Army and Navy; pride in the greatness of our national strength; pride in the high purpose for which we entered the war, and pride that we neither wanted nor got from it anything of profit for ourselves. Those stirring memories will always remain, and on each Armistice Day will glow again.

From the war we have two paramount obligations. We owe to those who suffered and yet lived an obligation of national assistance, each according to his need. We owe it to the dead that we redeem our promise that their sacrifice would help bring peace to the world. The Nation will discharge its obligations.

The men who fought know the real meaning and dreadfulness of war. No man came from that furnace a swash-buckling militarist. Those who saw its realities and its backwash in the sacrifice of women and children are not the men who glorify war. They are the men who pray for peace for their children. But they rightly demand that peace be had without the sacrifice of our independence or of those principles of justice without which civilization must fail.

Such a sacrifice of freedom and justice is the one calamity greater than war. The task of statesmen is to build a road to peace which avoids both of these calamities. This road requires preparedness for defense; it equally requires preparedness for peace.

The world to-day is comparatively at peace. The outlook for a peaceable future is more bright than for half a century past. Yet after all it is an armed peace. The men under arms including active reserves in the world are almost 30,000,000 in number, or nearly 10,000,000 more than before the Great War. Due to the Washington Arms Conference and the destruction of the German Navy, the combatant ships in the world show some decrease since the war. But aircraft, and other instruments of destruction are far more potent than they were even in the Great War. There are fears, distrusts, and smoldering injuries among nations that are the tinder of war. Nor does a single quarter of a century during all the ages of human experience warrant the assumption that war will not occur again.

Gloomy as this picture may be, yet we can say with truth that the world is becoming more genuinely inclined to peace; that the forces of imperial domination and aggression, of fear an

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Hoover, Herbert
Dec. 03, 1929  Message of the President of the United States
Dec. 03, 1929  Message of the President of the United States
Nov. 29, 1929  Address of President Hoover
Nov. 11, 1929  Address of President Hoover
Oct. 21, 1929  Address of President Hoover
Jul. 24, 1929  Address of President Hoover
May 30, 1929  Address of President Hoover at the Memorial Exercises at Arlington National Cemetary
Apr. 22, 1929  Address of President Hoover at the Annual Luncheon of the Associated Press at New York City
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