“A war today or tomorrow, if it led to nuclear war, would not be like any war in history.
A full-scale nuclear exchange, lasting less than 60 minutes, with the weapons now in existence, could wipe out more than 300 million Americans, Europeans, and Russians, as well as untold numbers elsewhere.
And the survivors, as Chairman Khrushchev warned the Communist Chinese, “the survivors would envy the dead.” For they would inherit a world so devastated by explosions and poison and fire that today we cannot even conceive of its horrors.
So let us try to turn the world away from war. Let us make the most of this opportunity, and every opportunity, to reduce tension, to slow down the perilous nuclear arms race, and to check the world’s slide toward final annihilation.”