Nikola Tesla and "Force Rays" - An Engineer's Aspect


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Saturday, July 2, 2011

Nikola Tesla and "Force Rays"

I've been reading a lot lately about Nikola Tesla.  In my research, I have found many interesting articles from the Newspaper Archives.  I thought I'd share some.  So here goes...

The Ironwood Daily Globe, Ironwood, Michigan, Page 4. Tuesday, July 17, 1934.

Can't Avert Causes

If it had been anyone but Nikola Tesla who announced discovery of means to erect a wall of "force rays" around a nation's borders to keep out invading armies, the country would very likely indulge in a hearty horse laugh.

Mr. Tesla, however, is one of those scientific gentlemen who can't be laughed off. His assertion sounds wild enough, in all conscience--a cross between Jules Verne and the earlier H.G. Wells--but these modern inventors are miracle workers anyway, and few of them are any cleverer than Mr. Tesla.

Each country would be able to enclose its borders in a new kind of military wall, an impalpable but infinitely effective wall, unlike anything ever seen before. Microscopic particles of dust electrically driven in vast whirlwind curtains, impervious to armies, navies, or fleets of airplanes--let each nation shelter itself inside such barriers and there could be no more war, because invasion would be an impossibility.

This having been done, we would get--what? The millennium? Probably not. For the problem of war is a problem that goes to the very roots of modern society, and it can't be settled simply by making it impossible for pugnacious peoples to get at each other.

The causes of war would remain untouched. The rivalries, the suspicions, and the conflicting aims which breed war would be right where they were before. If they could not find an outlet in armed strife, they would find it in some other kind of strife.

There can be economic wars, bloodless but quite as bitter as those in which armies and navies are used.

For the modern world, after all, is still very like a jungle, in which might makes the rules and self-interest is the first law.

As long as it continues to be that kind of world, there will be international conflicts of one kind or another.

Making invasion a physical impossibility would save many lives and prevent much suffering, of course; but it would not bring us any nearer to finding how to live harmoniously in a genuine community of nations.--NEA.