Roosevelt was very happy, he accepted the offer of Albert Einstein and gave him all the facilities he wanted. And Albert Einstein was not creating the atom bomb to destroy anybody just the threat would have been enough, that America has atomic weapons. Now it is better to surrender; otherwise the death of millions of people will be the result. Germany surrendered. Japan was considering the fact: What to do? because they could not manage to fight with an enemy who had atomic weapons. Their weapons were all primitive.
Japan was going to surrender that same week, but the American politicians…Roosevelt was no longer president; Truman was president. He was in a hurry to drop the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Now it has been revealed through the correspondence between him and Albert Einstein that he wanted to use the atomic weapons as quickly as possible to see what was their actual value, whether they could destroy as many people as Albert Einstein said they could. He wanted to test them by killing two big cities like Bombay, or New York…Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
And he destroyed those two cities. Even his own army experts said to him, “It is absolutely stupid to kill them. They are thinking about it, negotiations are on, our generals and their generals are meeting every day on conditions for how to settle and stop the war. It is only a question of one more week at the most. Japan is aware of the situation. Just as Germany has surrendered, Japan is going to surrender; there is no question.”
Truman was in a hurry: if Japan surrenders, then there will be no possibility in the near future to test the bombs to see what they can do. How many people can be killed within minutes?
And Albert Einstein wrote to Truman saying that “There is no need to use the atom bombs, just that you have them is enough. Germany has surrendered and Japan cannot stand long. It is going to surrender. I pray to you: please don’t use them!”
But once you have given the power into the hands of the politicians, who cares? Truman never replied to the letter. And Albert Einstein died with such frustration: “I am the cause of unnecessarily killing two hundred thousand people.”
A journalist asked him the day he died, “If another life is given to you, I hope you will still work to explore more and more deeply into physics and the power that matter contains.”
Einstein said, “Never. If I am born again, I will ask God to make me a plumber, but never a physicist. One time is enough.”
The plumber cannot do harm; at the most his plumbing may not be good and your bathroom may leak, but he cannot kill Hiroshima or Nagasaki. His statement that “I would like to be a plumber”…the lowest category one can ever aspire to; I have never come across anybody who is ambitious to become a plumber. This is sad, a very sad commentary on the whole situation of science.
People like Mahatma Gandhi condemn science and technology. They don’t condemn politicians because they themselves are politicians. It hurts to know…Mahatma Gandhi was continuously teaching the philosophy of nonviolence, and he was asked by Louis Fischer, “If your country becomes independent, what are you going to do with the great army that you have, and the factories and the arms?”