War Quotes

Most popular war quotes

To be prepared for war is one of the most effective means of preserving peace.

military peace

War ends nothing.
— African proverb

African proverbs proverbs

Self-defense is not fear.
— African proverb

African proverbs proverbs

War is the trade of kings.
The law is silent during war.
War is fear cloaked in courage.
War has to be nourished by lies.
War is the business of barbarians.
The sinews of war, unlimited money.
The first casualty of war is truth.
We make war that we may live in peace.


War is capitalism with the gloves off.
The ballot is stronger than the bullet.

democracy voting

War is the unfolding of miscalculations.
War is like love, it always finds a way.
In war, there are no unwounded soldiers.


Ambition is the grand enemy of all peace.


America is addicted to wars of distraction.
A war without headquarters is an expedition.
— African proverb

African proverbs proverbs

War never leaves a nation where it found it.
You cannot shake hands with a clenched fist.

negotiation peace socialism

The soldiers fight, and the kings are heroes.


When the rich wage war, it's the poor who die.
The quickest way of ending a war is to lose it.
Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent.


War's a brain-spattering, windpipe-slitting art.
War is never fatal but always lost. Always lost.
When elephants fight, the grass gets trampled on.

African proverbs proverbs

Might does not make right; it only makes history.
When elephants fight, it's the grass that suffers.
— African proverb

African proverbs proverbs

In war there is no second prize for the runner-up.
War is the continuation of politics by other means.
Force and fraud are in war the two cardinal virtues.
Make wars unprofitable and you make them impossible.
God is always on the side of the heaviest battalions.
Who overcomes by force hath overcome but half his foe.
War is a severe doctor; but it sometimes heals grievances.
I have a rendezvous with Death At some disputed barricade.


War's tragedy is that it uses man's best to do man's worst.


Force is all-conquering, but its victories are short-lived.


All war is a symptom of man's failure as a thinking animal.
Pursue one great decisive aim with force and determination.

determination goals

War is not an adventure. It is a disease. It is like typhus.
Soldiers generally win battles; generals get credit for them.


Wars of pen and ink often lead to wars of cannon and bayonets.
War is not an adventure.  It is a disease.  It is like typhus.
Older men declare war. But it is youth that must fight and die.
You may not be interested in war, but war is interested in you.
A life without fighting is a dead sea in the universal organism.
War is nothing but a cowardly escape from the problems of peace.
A peace which depends upon fear is nothing but a suppressed war.


The nation which forgets its defenders will be itself forgotten.


In peace, sons bury their fathers. In war, fathers bury their sons.
Nothing in life is so exhilarating as to be shot at without result.
It is well that this is so terrible!  We should grow too fond of it!
A general bit of shooting.....takes the mind off the cost of living.
A war is a huge fire; the ashes from it drift far, and settle slowly.
History is littered with wars which everybody knew would never happen.
It is not merely cruelty that leads men to love war, it is excitement.
You can build a throne with bayonets, but you can't sit on it for long.
Military glory --the attractive rainbow that rises in showers of blood.
I can make a General in five minutes but a good horse is hard to replace.


History is littered with the wars which everybody knew would never happen.


But war's a game, which, were their subjects wise,
Kings would not play at.
It is well that war is so terrible, otherwise we should grow too fond of it.
A hand on your cock is more moral-and more fun-than a finger on the trigger.
The right of conquest has no foundation other than the right of the strongest.
The enemy is anybody who's going to get you killed, no matter which side he's on.


War doesn't mature men; it merely pickles them in the brine of disgust and dread.
You can't say civilization don't advance... in every war they kill you in a new way.


The grass-roots support is not there. And we have to prevent it from developing again.
To call war the soil of courage and virtue is like calling debauchery the soil of love.
Wars of nations are fought to change maps. But wars of poverty are fought to map change.


There is many a boy here today who looks on war as all glory, but, boys, it is all hell.
The object of war is not to die for your country but to make the other bastard die for his.
In wartime, Truth is so precious that she should always be attended by a bodyguard of lies.


My yesterdays walk with me. They keep step, they are gray faces that peer over my shoulder.


Violence seldom accomplishes permanent and desired results. Herein lies the futility of war.
War is just when it is necessary; arms are permissible when there is no hope except in arms.
You're not here to die for your country; you're here to make those so-and-sos die for theirs.
Preventing war is much better than protesting against the war. Protesting the war is too late.


Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more; Or close the wall up with our English dead!
The most persistent sound which reverberates through man's history is the beating of war drums.


Terrorism has become the systematic weapon of a war that knows no borders or seldom has a face.
Fondly do we hope--fervently do we pray--that this mighty scourge of war may speedily pass away.
I look upon the whole world as my fatherland, and every war has to me the horror of a family feud.

brotherhood of man

Everyone, when there's war in the air, learns to live in a new element: falsehood.  Everybody lies.
We have war when at least one of the parties to a conflict wants something more than it wants peace.
We have all taken risks in the making of war. Isn't it time that we should take risks to secure peace?


Ideas are the great warriors of the world, and a war that has no idea behind it, is simply a brutality.
I'd like to see the government get out of war altogether and leave the whole field to private industry.
You will kill 10 of our men, and we will kill 1 of yours, and in the end it will be you who tire of it.
The spirit of war can never be destroyed by all the butcheries and persecutions the human mind can invent.
Peace is the exhaustion of strife, and is only secure in her triumphs in being in instant readiness for war.


The great tragedies of history occur not when right confronts wrong but when two rights confront each other.


War can only be abolished through war, and in order to get rid of the gun it is necessary to take up the gun.
The past is prophetic in that it asserts loudly that wars are poor chisels for carving out peaceful tomorrows.
He who does something at the head of one Regiment, will eclipse him who does nothing at the head of a hundred.

action bravery

War will never cease until babies begin to come into the world with larger cerebrums and smaller adrenal glands.

cynical peace

As soon as war is declared it will be impossible to hold the poets back.  Rhyme is still the most effective drum.

poetry poets

Before a war military science seems a real science, like astronomy; but after a war it seems more like astrology.
He who is the author of a war lets loose the whole contagion of hell and opens a vein that bleeds a nation to death.
Probably, no nation is rich enough to pay for both war and civilization. We must make our choice; we cannot have both.


Trees, though they are cut and looped, grow up again quickly, but if men are destroyed, it is not easy to get them again.
All wars derive from lack of empathy: the incapacity of one to understand and accept the likeness or difference of another.


It is all too obvious that if we do not abolish war on this earth, then surely one day, war will abolish us from the earth.
All the business of war, and indeed all the business of life, is to endeavor to find out what you don't know by what you do.
The belief in the possibility of a short decisive war appears to be one of the most ancient and dangerous of human illusions.
War seems to me a mean, contemptible thing: I would rather be hacked in pieces than take part in such an abominable business.
It is forbidden to kill; therefore all murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets.
Some wars have been due to the lust of rulers for power and glory, or to revenge to wipe out the humiliation of a former defeat.


It is always easy to begin a war, but very difficult to stop one, since its beginning and end are not under the control of the same man.
As long as war is regarded as wicked, it will always have its fascination. When it is looked upon as vulgar, it will cease to be popular.
And the worst part about making a soldier of a man is not that a soldier kills brown men or white men, but that the soldier loses his own soul.
We used to wonder where war lived, what it was that made it so vile.  And now we realize that we know where it lives, that it is inside ourselves.
But that was war. Just about all he could find in its favor was that it paid well and liberated children from the pernicious influence of their parents.
In this age when there can be no losers in peace and no victors in war, we must recognize the obligation to match national strength with national restraint.
War has always been the grand sagacity of every spirit which has grown too inward and too profound; its curative power lies even in the wounds one receives.
War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things; the decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks nothing worth a war, is worse.
What this country needs—what every country needs occasionally—is a good hard bloody war to revive the vice of patriotism on which its existence as a nation depends.
Total war is no longer war waged by all members of one national community against all those of another. It is total ... because it may well involve the whole world.


War may make a fool of man, but it by no means degrades him; on the contrary, it tends to exalt him, and its net effects are much like those of motherhood on women.
The ability to get to the verge without getting into the war is the necessary art. If you try to run away from it, if you are scared to go to the brink, you are lost.

socialism statesmanship

The guerrilla fights the war of the flea, and his military enemy suffers the dog's disadvantage: too much to defend; too small, ubiquitous, and agile an enemy to come to grips with.
Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired, signifies in the final sense a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed.
Where is the justice of political power if it executes the murderer and jails the plunderer, and then itself marches upon neighbouring lands, killing thousands and pillaging the very hills?


Can anything be more ridiculous than that a man should have the right to kill me because he lives on the other side of the water, and because his ruler has a quarrel with mine, though I have none with him?
Suppose you go to war, you cannot fight always; and when, after much loss on both sides, and no gain on either, you cease fighting, the identical old questions, as to terms of intercourse, are again upon you.

American Civil War

War is a quarrel between two thieves too cowardly to fight their own battle; therefore they take boys from one village and another village, stick them into uniforms, equip them with guns, and let them loose like wild beasts against each other.
Honor to the Soldier, and Sailor everywhere, who bravely bears his countrys cause. Honor also to the citizen who cares for his brother in the field, and serves, as he best can, the same cause honor to him, only less than to him, who braves, for the common good, the storms of heaven and the storms of battle.


Has it ever struck you that one of the most serious consequences of this war is what Kirk calls 'the survival of the unfittest'? All those who have the courage to do so and are physically sound, are going off to be shot: those who survive are moral and physical weeds – a fact which does not promise favourably for the next generation.