49 Famous Quotes by Oscar Arias

Oscar Arias is a Costa Rican politician and diplomat who served as the President of Costa Rica from 1986 to 1990 and again from 2006 to 2010. He is known for his commitment to peace and democracy, and he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1987 for his efforts to promote peace and democracy in Central America. Arias's work on disarmament and conflict resolution has had a significant impact on the region, and his legacy as a peacemaker and advocate for democracy continues to inspire people around the world. (Oscar Arias Biography).

Oscar Arias Famous Quotes

1. "Poverty and lack of education are ruining our planet."

2. "When Harvard University opened its doors in 1636, there were already well-established universities in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Mexico, and Peru."

3. "Peace is a never ending process... It cannot ignore our differences or overlook our common interests. It requires us to work and live together."

4. "During the 41 years that have elapsed since Costa Rica abolished its army, our fundamental freedoms have never been threatened, nor do we know a shameful history of repression."

5. "Peace is a never-ending process, the work of many decisions by many people in many countries. It is an attitude, a way of life, a way of solving problems and resolving conflicts."

6. "I do not believe that the hungry man should be treated as subversive for expressing his suffering."

7. "Free trade will go a long way toward alleviating poverty in Central America. Yet trade alone is not enough."

8. "Nuclear arms kill many people all at once, but other weapons kill many people, little by little, every day, everywhere in the world."

9. "The children of the world, what they want and what they need are health clinics and schools, not tanks or armed helicopters or fighter jets."

10. "I like to build bridges... not walls."

11. "We may believe in the state's responsibility to alleviate the crushing poverty that afflicts 40 percent of Latin America's population, but most of us also affirm that there is no better cure for that poverty than a stronger, more globally integrated economy."

12. "Mine is an unarmed people, whose children have never seen a fighter or a tank or a warship."

13. "Costa Rica believes in building bridges, in looking for solutions to problems, and not clinging to positions."

14. "The Central American isthmus is a region of great contrasts, but also of heartening unison. Millions of men and women share dreams of freedom and progress."

15. "India, Pakistan, China, Singapore and South Korea are heavily investing in nuclear arms. Since 21st century is the century of Asia, Asian countries should be the first ones to drop this arms race."

16. "Peace is not a matter of prizes or trophies. It is not the product of a victory or command. It has no finishing line, no final deadline, no fixed definition of achievement."

17. "I shall never accept that the law can be used to justify tragedy, to keep things as they are, to make us abandon our ideas of a different world. Law is the path of liberty, and must as such open the way to progress for everyone."

18. "We seek in Central America not peace alone, not peace to be followed someday by political progress, but peace and democracy, together, indivisible, an end to the shedding of human blood, which is inseparable from an end to the suppression of human rights."

19. "We had the courage to face the superpowers that wanted a military triumph for each side they supported in Central America. We told them, 'No,' and presented a peace plan."

20. "A nation that mistreats its own citizens is more likely to mistreat its neighbours."

21. "I often say that poverty needs no passport to travel."

22. "Latin America has not achieved the development that it deserves... I'm not optimistic for all of Latin America, not only for Central America."

23. "There are too many war museums."

24. "It is in the U.S. interest to have a more prosperous neighbor to the south. Because if we cannot export goods, we will keep exporting people. And that's not what the U.S. wants."

25. "Indeed, it is quite sad to see the United States becoming the main exporter of arms. It is quite sad to look at the U.S. government subsidizing arms exports."

26. "There is a difference between the typical politician and the statesman. A typical politician is that person who tells people what people want to hear, while the statesman tells people what people need to know."

27. "Latin Americans glorify their past so ceaselessly that they make it almost impossible to advocate change."

28. "Latin Americans hold on tight even to pain and suffering, preferring a certain present to an uncertain future. Some of this is only natural, entirely human. But for us, the fear is paralyzing; it generates not only anxiety but also paralysis."

29. "In a democracy, a leader must be the head teacher, someone eager to respond to doubts and questions and explain the need for and the benefits of a new course."

30. "The world does not lack the financial resources to feed, educate and clothe its inhabitants. Rather, it lacks leaders committed to addressing the problems of the impoverished."

31. "Many developing countries continue to be burdened by high percentages of their population living in poverty. Yet, instead of addressing this root cause of conflict, many states, ironically, increase their military might in order to control increasingly desperate populations."

32. "In 1995, world military spending totaled nearly $800 billion. If we redirected just $40 billion of those resources over the next 10 years to fighting poverty, all of the world's population would enjoy basic social services, such as education, health care, nutrition, reproductive health, clean water and sanitation."

33. "The 20th century has been marked by cynicism, selfishness, greed, and the desire to please, all without changing the status quo. In the 21st century, we must resurrect solidarity and compassion."

34. "It's not fair for the U.S. to spend, on arms and weapons, so much money and then not spend on health care the money that is needed."

35. "It often seems... the human race has twittered away its existence singing an endless song - a song of waste and hatred, where there should be progress and love."

36. "Our world is certainly dangerous, but it is made more dangerous, not less, by those who value profits over peace."

37. "Our experience shows that security does not lie in weapons or fences or armies."

38. "If there is no peace in Central America, it will not be because Costa Rica, and myself as president, have not done what is necessary to obtain peace."

39. "I think it's in the hands of each head of state: the future of peace in his own country."

40. "More combat planes, missiles and soldiers won't provide additional bread for our families, desks for our schools, or medicine for our clinics."

41. "At one time in the history of the Americas, weapons and armies were associated with liberty and independence, and with new opportunities for our peoples. At one time in the history of the Americas, there were liberating armies."

42. "We need a force that recognizes that only through development and liberty, through education and health care, through better priorities and wiser investments, can we achieve the stability we seek."

43. "I saw no reason why other nations should tell Central Americans how to solve their problems."

44. "An overall trend of political moderation in Latin America makes for far less interesting headlines, but it also makes for far better lives for our people."

45. "The best way to perpetuate poverty is by spending on arms and military, and the best way to fight terrorism is by fighting the basic needs of humanity, because hunger and poverty perpetuate crime."

46. "In the United States, resources exist to retrain displaced workers and promote the development of technologies that create new job opportunities for American workers."

47. "Although fostering a peaceful, prosperous and equitable hemisphere is clearly in the best interest of the United States, Washington has not always supported Central America's struggle for economic survival."

48. "The absence of significant development aid has only increased the importance of trade for Central America's future."

49. "On Dec. 1, 1948, after the triumph of the revolution, which insured the final victory of the will of the people expressed through elections, President Jose Figueres abolished the army in my country."

― Oscar Arias Quotes

* Want to explore more inspiring quotes and their meanings? Head over to this quotes page, where you can find more thought-provoking quotes and their interpretations.

Chief Editor

Tal Gur is an author, founder, and impact-driven entrepreneur at heart. After trading his daily grind for a life of his own daring design, he spent a decade pursuing 100 major life goals around the globe. His journey and most recent book, The Art of Fully Living, has led him to found Elevate Society.

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