To bomb a military enemy “back into the Stone Age” is to create total destruction. (The Stone Age was a primitive civilization.) Ever since atomic bombs were used in warfare in 1945, various commentators have said that nuclear war would bring the world back into the Stone Age. Retired U.S. General Curtis LeMay (1906-1990) wrote in Mission With LeMay: My Story (1965):
“My solution to the problem would be to tell [the North Vietnamese Communists] frankly that they’ve got to draw in their horns and stop their aggression or we’re going to bomb them into the Stone Age. And we would shove them back into the Stone Age with Air power or Naval power—not with ground forces.”
However, LeMay told the Washington (DC) Post in 1967:
‘I never said we should bomb them back to the Stone Age. I said we had the capability to do it. I want to save lives on both sides.”
Wikipedia: Stone Age
The Stone Age is a broad prehistoric period during which stone was widely used to make implements with a sharp edge, a point, or a percussion surface. The period lasted roughly 3.4 million years, and ended between 6000 BCE and 2000 BCE with the advent of metalworking. Stone Age artifacts include tools used by humans and by their predecessor species in the genus Homo, as well as the earlier partly contemporaneous genera Australopithecus and Paranthropus. Bone tools were used during this period as well but are rarely preserved in the archaeological record. The Stone Age is further subdivided by the types of stone tools in use.
Wikipedia: Curtis LeMay
Curtis Emerson LeMay (November 15, 1906 – October 1, 1990) was a general in the United States Air Force and the vice presidential running mate of American Independent Party presidential candidate George Wallace in 1968.
He is credited with designing and implementing an effective, but also controversial, systematic strategic bombing campaign in the Pacific theater of World War II. During the war, he was known for planning and executing a massive bombing campaign against cities in Japan and a crippling minelaying campaign in Japan’s internal waterways.
Evidence of LeMay’s thinking is that, in his 1965 autobiography (co-written with MacKinlay Kantor) LeMay is quoted as saying his response to North Vietnam would be to demand that “they’ve got to draw in their horns and stop their aggression, or we’re going to bomb them back into the Stone Age. And we would shove them back into the Stone Age with Air power or Naval power—not with ground forces.”
Wikiquote: Curtis LeMay
Curtis LeMay (November 15, 1906 – October 3, 1990) was a general in the United States Air Force.
My solution to the problem would be to tell [the North Vietnamese Communists] frankly that they’ve got to draw in their horns and stop their aggression or we’re going to bomb them into the Stone Age. And we would shove them back into the Stone Age with Air power or Naval power—not with ground forces.
. Mission With LeMay: My Story (1965), p. 565. In an interview two years after the publication of this book, General LeMay said, “I never said we should bomb them back to the Stone Age. I said we had the capability to do it. I want to save lives on both sides”; reported in The Washington Post (October 4, 1968), p. A8. Many years later LeMay would claim that this was his ghost writer’s overwriting.
20 November 1965, The Post (Frederick, MD), “Victory” (editorial), pg. 4, col. 2:
For a quicker ending, the air arms would step up the air war. Gen. Curtis E. LeMay, retired Air Force Chief of Staff, would bomb North Vietnam back into the stone age to convince them that aggression does not pay. He reveals in his book, “Mission with LeMay” the way to knock out North Korea with air and naval power, not with ground forces.
Google News Archive
26 November 1965, Miami (FL) News, “LeMay: I’d Bomb Hanoi Back Into The Stone Age” By Fred S. Hoffman (AP), pg. 1A, col. 3:
WASHINGTON (AP)—Gen. Curtis E. LeMay, who argues that it is immoral to use less force than necessary in warfare, says he would handle the present Viet Nam conflict by telling the Hanoi regime:
“They have got to draw in their horns and stop their aggression, or we are going to bomb them back into the Stone Age.”
18 March 1967, Omaha (NE) World-Herald, “General LeMay Says We Should Bomb More” (Washington Post Service), pg. 4, col. 6:
‘I never said we should bomb them back to the Stone Age,” General LeMay said in denying quotes to this effect. “I said we had the capability to do it. I want to save lives on both sides.”
Google News Archive
2 June 1967, The Dispatch (Lexington, NC), “A Bad Week for Doves and Hawks” by Art Buchwald, pg. 4, col. 6:
“You bet your sweet life they should go it alone. I say bomb them back to the stone age.”
(Spoken by Brinkerhoff, Buchwald’s pacific friend.—ed.)
Google News Archive
5 July 1972, The Ledger (Lakeland, FL), “Back Into The Stone Age” by Anthony Lewis, pg. 8A, cols. 5-6:
Most Americans thought it grotesque and horrifying when General Curtis Lemay spoke in 1965 of bombing the North Vietnamese “back into the Stone Age.” But something very like that is happening right now.
OCLC WorldCat record
Bombing Children Into the Stone Age
Author: P D Houston
Publisher: [Arlington, VA, etc. American Association of School Administrators]
Edition/Format: Article Article : English
Publication: The School administrator. 57, Part 8 (2000): 58-59
History News Network
Bomb them Back to the Stone Age: An Etymology
by Nick Cullather
Mr. Cullather is a history professor at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana.
The quote is usually attributed to Curtis LeMay, the scowling Air Force general who incinerated two thirds of Japan’s cities in World War II and was disappointed when Kennedy wouldn’t let him do the same to Cuba. In his 1968 memoir he suggested that rather than negotiating with Hanoi, the United States should “bomb them back to the stone age,” by taking out factories, harbors, and bridges “until we have destroyed every work of man in North Vietnam.”
LeMay, however, had cribbed it from a June 1967 column by humorist Art Buchwald, who used the phrase to caricature the Goldwater Republican attitude toward Vietnam. The 1964 “Daisy Girl” ad had already tarred Republicans as inveterate bombers, but the joke came from Buchwald’s association of bombing with time travel.
11:33 am on June 26, 2014
The Magnificence of (Rebuilt) Dresden, and Volkswagen
Llewellyn H. Rockwell, Jr.
We’re often told by the US regime that its civilian casualties in war are unintended. That is just another lie. The US always seeks to kills civilians. For example, in WWII, the US and its assistant, the UK, bombed every city in Germany and Japan, back into the Stone Age, as the generals like to say. At the end of the war, these cities were home to old people and women and children. Targeting them was called “morale bombing.”
Angie in WA State
@TyrantFX Compelling story of conflict, in a setting few Americans see: a Persian Gulf nation not bombed into the stone age by the US.
5:35 PM - 26 Jun 2014
New York City • Government/Law/Politics/Military • Thursday, June 26, 2014 • Permalink