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    Albert Einstein writes, "To me it is enough to know that the continuation of the existence of human beings is in serious doubt if no supra-national solution can be achieved"

    Albert Einstein Typed Letter Signed "A. Einstein". One page, 8.5" x 11", New Jersey, February 29, 1952, on Einstein's personal letterhead (with embossed "A. Einstein/ 112, Mercer Street/ Princeton/ New Jersey, U.S.A.", offering scientist and author Kenneth Heuer a glimpse into his evolving views of the use of atomic power. Three years before his death, Einstein writes:

    "I have read with much interest your popular astronomical book. I have found it intelligent, stimulating and critical with respect to your assertions.

    "About the technical development in the field of atomic energy: I was not interested in that matter for years but rather disgusted by the course it has taken in the hands of short-sighted politicians. I shall therefore be unable to give you the desired informations [sic]. To me it is enough to know that the continuation of the existence of human beings is in serious doubt if no supra-national solution can be achieved."

    Heuer's "popular astronomical book" which Einstein read "with much interest" was Men of Other Planets (1951), which was written for the general public and offered an optimistic view about extra-terrestrial inhabitants. But Einstein's most interesting statements include those about atomic energy. When Hitler came to power in Germany, Einstein migrated to the U.S. and accepted a position at Princeton University with the Institute of Advanced Study, where he remained until his death. In response to the Nazi German threat to western European civilizations, Einstein, a theoretical physicist, had written President Roosevelt a letter in 1939 to encourage him to develop the atomic bomb. In 1945, however, Einstein had argued that the world war could be won without it. Horrified by the devastation at Hiroshima and Nagasaki caused by the two atomic bombs, Einstein began to promote the idea of a world government, since internationalism - his "supra-national solution" - was the only solution to the threat of future atomic wars and total human annihilation. This letter has smoothed folds.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    June, 2010
    8th-9th Tuesday-Wednesday
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