Who and When?

September 2006
By SIGNAL Magazine Staff

Try to identify the source of the quotes below and the year in which each statement was made:

A) “The efficient and extensive communication system from Washington to the front lines which served our armed forces during the war played an important part in achieving victory. This great communication system was possible only because of the magnificent efforts of the communications personnel … backed up by unified and cooperative efforts of the communication industry.”

B) “Development of greater speed in communications becomes of more vital importance while the requirements for maximum reliability and security are in no way reduced. The problems of military communications are many and difficult.”

C) “Now that the field of communications has broadened to the unforeseeable horizons of electronics, the interdependence of ordnance with its rockets and guided missiles becomes all the greater.”

D) ”Research toward a defense against rockets and guided missiles is part of the Signal Corps’ job.”

E) “Some action must be taken by the American people without very much more delay to ensure the continued flow into the military professions of a portion of the more brilliant and promising young Americans.”

For answers, scroll down.







Answers to “Who and When?”

All of these statements were printed 60 years ago in SIGNAL Magazine’s first issue, Vol. 1, No. 1, September 1946. The sources are as follows:

A) Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower, USA, chief of staff

B) Rear Adm. Earl E. Stone, USN, chief of naval communications

C) Col. L.A. Copp, USA (Ret.), editor, Army Ordnance

D) Notes From Fort Monmouth column

E) SIGNAL editorial


It seems that the more things change, the more they stay the same. Here is just a sampling of other pertinent quotes and editorial statements that have appeared in SIGNAL Magazine issues over the years:


“I can foresee the day when we shall look around the Earth from city to city and nation to nation, as easily as we now listen to global broadcasts.”—Brig. Gen. David Sarnoff, USA, November 1947

“A possible revolutionary change in Army communications will come from Bell Labs’ invention of a tiny electronic device called a transistor.” —September 1948

“Where shall we fight … at our own or the enemies’ doorstep?”—July 1952

“Critical shortage of scientists and engineers in America is potentially a greater threat to our nation than any weapon known to be in the arsenals of aggressor nations.”—Secretary of the Air Force Don Quarles, November 1955

Lack of management of the RF spectrum promises “serious snarls, misunderstanding and possible waste.”—Senator Warren G. Magnuson (D-WA), March 1956

“It is hard to harmonize the needs of conventional warfare with the even more limited guerrilla challenges that confront the free world.”—Deputy Secretary of Defense Roswell Gilpatric, May 1962

“We can no longer afford to buy a different black box for each service to do basically the same task.”—Assistant Secretary of Defense for Installations and Logistics Barry Shillito, February 1970

“Surveillance systems tell it like it was … they need to tell us like it is.”—Joseph Jankowski Jr., principal engineer, Radiation Incorporated, December 1970

“Someday airline passengers will walk through this device that detects guns.”—December 1970

“How do you balance desires for privacy and propriety with the resulting reduction in our intelligence and covert action capabilities?”—CIA Director Stansfield Turner, August 1979