Leo Szilard recalled...

mp3 SZILARD: There was a crowd there and when it dispersed, Fermi and I stayed there alone. Enrico Fermi and I remained. I shook hands with Fermi and I said that I thought this day would go down as a black day in the history of mankind. I was quite aware of the dangers. Not because I am so wise but because I have read a book written by H. G. Wells called The World Set Free. He wrote this before the First World War and described in it the development of atomic bombs, and the war fought by atomic bombs. So I was aware of these things. But I was also aware of the fact that something had to be done if the Germans get the bomb before we have it. They had knowledge. They had the people to do it and would have forced us to surrender if we didn't have bombs also. We had no choice, or we thought we had no choice.

Enrico Fermi in 1952 summed up the feelings of all people today...

mp3 FERMI: It was our hope during the war years that with the end of the war, the emphasis would be shifted from weapons to the development of these peaceful aims. Unfortunately, it appears that the end of the war really has not brought peace. We all hope as time goes on that it may become possible to devote more and more activity to peaceful purposes and less and less to the production of weapons.


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