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This doctrine has long been the keystone of U.S. defense policy. President Eisenhower and Secretary of State Dulles have clarified it and built around it a firmer U.S. foreign policy.

That he opposes this policy does not mean that Oppenheimer is disloyal. Indeed, the Vice President of the U.S., Richard Nixon, last week went out of his way to express his belief in Oppenheimer's loyalty. But Oppenheimer's kind of politics and his peculiar power arouse violent antagonism.

A sense of moral responsibility concerning war is not limited to atomic scientists. Most generals have that sense and so do most nonscientific civilians at the top layers of Government. They do not feel it as "a sense of sin." Most of them have borne this sense of responsibility as citizens, soldiers or officials for many years. This fact does not make them more right or more loyal than Oppenheimer. Or less so.

It may be that the real basis of the bitter conflict that culminated in the charges against Oppenheimer were laid before the finger of suspicion was pointed at him. His mood in 1945 was one of deep conviction that he and his colleagues had to change the world, that they had to triumph over men who might, through stupidity and immorality, betray society—which Oppenheimer, at least, had only recently discovered, and which had become precious to him, as his salvation from what he considered the sin of Alamogordo.

It is possible—and for thousands of years men have known this—to develop pride out of a sense of guilt. Many of the military and civilian officials whom Oppenheimer opposed sensed in him an arrogant desire to take into his own hands the destiny of society. Perhaps they were wrong to think this of him. Even if they were right, disloyalty may not be the relevant accusation. However he came to his present ordeal, J. Robert Oppenheimer's life is a bitter parable of a bitter time.

* Dr. Condon concluded his letter: "Let me know by wire if you have not received this letter by Sunday."

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