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Edward Teller (1908 – 2003)


American nuclear physicist, known as "the father of the hydrogen bomb.
Edward Teller
By having simplified what is known, physicists have been led into realms which as yet are anything but simple. That at some time, they, too, will appear as simple consequences of a theory of which no one has yet dreamed is not a statement of fact.
It is a statement of faith.
Teller quotes
On May 7, a few weeks after the accident at Three-Mile Island, I was in Washington. I was there to refute some of that propaganda that Ralph Nader, Jane Fonda and their kind are spewing to the news media in their attempt to frighten people away from nuclear power. I am 71 years old, and I was working 20 hours a day. The strain was too much. The next day, I suffered a heart attack. You might say that I was the only one whose health was affected by that reactor near Harrisburg. No, that would be wrong. It was not the reactor. It was Jane Fonda. Reactors are not dangerous.
Teller
If we stay strong, then I believe we can stabilize the world and have peace based on force. Now, peace based on force is not as good as peace based on agreement, but in the terrible world in which we live, in the world where the Russians have enslaved many millions of human beings, in the the world where they have killed men, I think that for the time being the only peace we can have is the peace based on force. Furthermore, I do not think that this peace based on force is, can be, or should be, an ultimate end. Our ultimate end must be precisely what Dr. Pauling says, peace based on agreement, on understanding, on universally agreed and enforced law. I think this is a wonderful idea, but peace based on force buys the necessary time, and in this time we can work for better understanding, for closer collaboration, first with the countries which are closest to us, which we understand better, our allies, the western countries, the NATO countries, which believe in human liberties as we do. Then, as soon as possible, with the rest of the free world, and eventually, I hope, with the whole world, including Russia, even though it may take many years to come.




Teller Edward quotes
My name is not Strangelove. I don't know about Strangelove. I'm not interested in Strangelove. What else can I say?... Look. Say it three times more, and I throw you out of this office.
Teller Edward
When you fight for a desperate cause and have good reasons to fight, you usually win.
Edward Teller quotes
Dr. Teller has a mind very different from mine. I think one needs both kinds of minds to make a successful project. I think Dr. Teller's mind runs particularly to making brilliant inventions, but what he needs is some control, some other person who is more able to find out just what is the scientific fact about the matter. Some other person who weeds out the bad from the good ideas.
Edward Teller
I hate doubt, yet I am certain that doubt is the only way to approach anything worth believing in.
Teller Edward quotes
Business institutions universities
Both are quite the circus where the killer wants his way
I think of Edward Teller and his moribund reprise
Then I look to Nevada and I can't believe my eyes
It's time for him to die!
Teller
We must learn to live with contradictions, because they lead to deeper and more effective understanding.
Teller Edward
Physics is, hopefully, simple. Physicists are not.
Edward Teller
There's no system foolproof enough to defeat a sufficiently great fool.




Edward Teller quotes
The preservation of peace and the improvement of the lot of all people require us to have faith in the rationality of humans. If we have this faith and if we pursue understanding, we have not the promise but at least the possibility of success. We should not be misled by promises. Humanity in all its history has repeatedly escaped disaster by a hair's breadth. Total security has never been available to anyone. To expect it is unrealistic; to imagine that it can exist is to invite disaster. What we do have in our technological capacities is an opportunity to use our inventiveness, our creativity, our wisdom and our understanding of our fellow beings to create a future world that is a little better than the one in which we live today.
Edward Teller
I believe that no endeavor that is worthwhile is simple in prospect; if it is right, it will be simple in retrospect.
Teller quotes
I believe in excellence. It is a basic need of every human soul. All of us can be excellent, because, fortunately, we are exceedingly diverse in our ambitions and talents.
Teller Edward
When you come to the end of all the light you know, and it's time to step into the darkness of the unknown, faith is knowing that one of two things shall happen: either you will be given something solid to stand on or you will be taught to fly.
Teller Edward quotes
I contributed; Ulam did not. I'm sorry I had to answer it in this abrupt way. Ulam was rightly dissatisfied with an old approach. He came to me with a part of an idea which I already had worked out and difficulty getting people to listen to. He was willing to sign a paper. When it then came to defending that paper and really putting work into it, he refused. He said, "I don't believe in it."
Edward Teller
He is a danger to all that is important. I do really feel it would have been a better world without Teller.
Edward Teller quotes
I believe in evil. It is the property of all those who are certain of truth. Despair and fanaticism are only differing manifestations of evil.
Edward Teller
I don't want to kill anybody. I am passionately opposed to killing, but I'm even more passionately fond of freedom. The freedom of Dr. Pauling and of myself expressing our opinions freely on any subject, however broad, however far removed of our proper competence, but particularly, to be able to express our opinions in the fields we really know; this would not be possible in Russia.
Teller Edward
There is no case where ignorance should be preferred to knowledge especially if the knowledge is terrible.


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