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Atoms for Peace

President Dwight D. Eisenhower's address to the National Assembly
by

Jenessa Souza

on 21 October 2013

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Transcript of Atoms for Peace

Atoms for Peace
Rhetorical
Rhetorical
Dwight D. Eisenhower
Historical Background
President Dwight D. Eisenhower, former five-star general of the United States Army, gave a speech at the United Nations General Assembly on December 8th, 1953. His main purpose there was to comfort a nation full of terrified people after the horrific and destructive attracks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki and after nuclear tests that were conducted in the early 1950's. However, Eisenhower also wanted to ensure that the NATO allies would go along with using cheaper nuclear weapons instead of more expensive conventional weapons. This was also a reassurance to the Western Europeans that the United States did not intend to start a nuclear war. The speech was the turning point for international focus on peaceful uses of atomic energy.
What Eisenhower Hoped to Accomplish
With this speech, Eisenhower hoped to
convince the nation that nuclear weapons
could be useful for keeping the country safe. He simply wanted to stockpile weapons as a way of showing other countries not to mess with us, although he never intended to use any of the nuclear weapons to start a war. They
were more of a preventative measure.
His Audience
and the National Response
Eisenhower was mainly speaking to the members
of the United Nations General Assembly. However, he
was also speaking indirectly to the European allies and the Western Europeans to assure them that he was not planning
on starting a nuclear war.
After this speech was given, it opened up nuclear research to civilians and countries that had not previously possessed
nuclear technology. This made it possible for some countries
to develop weapons to protect themselves. The Atoms for
Peace program was also started and it created regulations
for the use of nuclear power. Nuclear technology was
able to be used in positive ways.
Rhetorical Appeals
Ethos
Logos
Pathos
The portion of my speech that I chose did not have an example of ethos. However, before Eisenhower became president, he was a five-star general in the United States Army. This allows credibility to be established by default. In this speech, Eisenhower is talking about military attacks with nuclear weapons. Since he has a background in the Army and in fighting tactics, it is much easier to believe and accept what he has to say concerning nuclear warfare.
This is an example of logos because a fact is being stated. Eisenhower is using this date to establish a specific time when a major event in American history took place. He is also letting the people know that the United States has accomplished something very important, which in this case is the first atomic explosion.

This is an example of pathos because of the use of loaded language and the emotions that it elicites from the reader/listener. Eisenhower used these precise words to let his audience know that the United States was not the only country who had knowledge of deadly atomic weapons. Not only our allies, but also our enemies, knew of the power of atomic weaponry.
Parenthesis
"Today, the United States stockpile of atomic weapons,
which, of course, increases daily,
exceeds by many times the total equivalent of the total of all bombs and all shells that came from every plane and every gun in every theatre of war in all the years of World War II."
This is an example of parallelism because of the similarity in structure of the listing of the different branches of the Military. The structure repeats: article-noun, article-noun, article-noun, conjunction-article-noun. Eisenhower is using this to show that all branches of the Military are equal and are all strong enough to carry out the use of an atomic weapon.
"In the United States,
the Army, the Navy, the Air Force,
and
the
Marine Corps
are all capable of putting this weapon to military use."
This is an example of alliteration because of the repetition of the first consonants of "awful, arithmetic, atomic." Eisenhower most likely used this as part of his speech as a memory aide and as something that will catch the listeners attention. It also conveys some of his feelings towards atomic weapons.
Antithesis
"My country wants to be
constructive, not destructive.
It wants
agreements, not wars,
among nations."
Devices
Devices
Rhetorical Question
"Could anyone wish his name to be coupled by history with such human degredation and destruction
?
"
This is an example of isocolon because the highlighted words are all similar in length, meaning, and number of syllables. Eisenhower used this to emphasize "the men" and the happiness that they can feel by overcoming the tragedies that had fallen on the world.
"So my country's purpose is to help us move out of the dark chamber of horror into the light, to find a way by which
the minds of men, the hopes of men, the souls of men
everywhere, can move forward towards peace and happiness and well-being."
Rhetorical
Devices
President Eisenhower's

Political TV Campaign
This is an example of anaphora because the beginnings of all of the clauses in the sentences begin with "I know." Eisenhower does this to tell the nation and all who are listening that he does know, without a doubt, what is going to have to take place for the United States to get back on track and continue to progress and develop.
Climax
"To stop there would be to accept hope -- helplessly the probability of civilization destroyed, the annihilation of the irreplaceable heritage of mankind handed down to use generation from generation, and the condemnation of mankind to begin all over again the age-old struggle upward from
savagery
toward
decency,
and
right,
and
justice.
"
Rhetorical
Devices
"On
July 16, 1945,
the United States set off the world's first atomic explosion."
"But the
dread secret
and the
fearful engines
of atomic might are not ours alone."
This is an example of parenthesis because of the insertion of "which, of course, increases daily." The sentence is interrupted and would still make sense if that part was taken out. President Eisenhower used that phrase to discretely let everyone know that the United States is continuing, and will continue, to stockpile nuclear weapons. This is another showing of how strong America would be, should there really be an atomic war.
Parallelism
"The
a
wful
a
rithmetic of the
a
tomic bomb does not permit of any such easy solution."
Alliteration
This is an example of antithesis because of the contrast between words that are positioned close to each other. Eisenhower is showing the stark contrast between what he wants and does not want for the country.
This is an example of a rhetorical question because a question is being asked without the expectance of an answer in return. President Eisenhower uses this question to support his next statement, that history as a whole revels mankind's never-ending quest for peace. He is tactfully saying that though history does show some "great destroyers," if you look at the whole history of the world, mankind always is struggling for peace and continuing development.
Isocolon
Anaphora
"In this quest,
I know
that we must not lack patience.
I know
that in a world divided, such as ours today, salvation cannot be attained by one dramatic act.
I know
that many steps will have to be taken over many months before the world can look at itself one day and truly realize that a new climate of mutually peaceful confidence is abroad in the world. But
I know,
above all else, that we must start to take these steps now."
This is an example of climax because the words increase in importance as you go along. President Eisenhower was showing how mankind progresses and that if we, as a nation, did not continue on the path we were already on, we would have to start all over again from the bottom.
Bonus!
"To stop there would be to accept hope -- helplessly the probability of civilization destroyed, the annihilation of the irreplaceable heritage of mankind handed down to use generation from generation, and the condemnation of mankind to begin all over again the age-old struggle upward from savagery toward decency,
and
right,
and
justice."
Polysyndeton
This is an example of polysyndeton because of the use of extra conjunctions between words. Although there are only two extra "and's," the placement of the words and conjunctions makes what Eisenhower is saying feel more important and makes it easier to remember. He is emphasizing decency and right and justice.
Full transcript