In any other circumstances, pacifist Leo Szilard might have been best remembered as the inventor (along with fellow pacifist Albert Einstein) of the modern fridge.
Instead he joined some others (sometimes pacifist others) in working on a super weapon that would so frighten the planet's militarists that they would instantly sue for permanent world peace.
Unfortunately, it was agreed that the backward militarist mind would require a convincing demonstration project, before being convinced.
So in the end a few hundred thousand people ended up dead in radiation and fire, all for 'the greatest good of the greatest number' ---but universal peace still did not break out - far from it.
So poor Szilard is today primarily remembered for instigating the Manhattan Project rather than inventing the perfect fridge ....or the perfect peace.
By contrast, Robert Fulton, a fellow New York City area resident like Szilard, (albeit from a hundred and fifty years earlier ), is best known today for building the first commercial steam boat service in the world, between New York City and Albany.
But as H. Bruce Franklin points out in his ground-breaking book "War Stars" , Fulton had had his utopian pacifist weapon scheme as well.
This submarine and sea-mine system was designed to destroy the British navy, freeing the high seas for universal free trade and commerce and thus introducing an era of permanent world peace.
This was/is standard centuries-old Liberal dogma, still much spouted today.
Fulton's willingness to sink a few real ships (along with their real crews) is also right on par with all the many Liberal peace bomb efforts: in the utilitarianism-driven willingness to see a 'few' die (unwillingly and unasked) for the greater good of the greater number.
Between Fulton and Szilard, New York has thrown up a number of Liberal pacifist and their peace weapons - perhaps most notably that shy pacifist Carl Norden.... and his precision WW II bombsight of the same name.
All these plans start off as efforts to design a totally new advance on weapon systems.
But these superweapons are not for profitably continuing sales in continuous wars.
Rather they are to 'demonstrate' their horrific effects just once and then usher in world peace forever.
All of them have a scope and gravitas and a vision about them that seems perfectly cut to fit Manhattan's taste in grandness-for-the-sake-of-grandness, thus becoming 'the Empire State Building of New York intellectual conceits'.....
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