late October (12 minutes)
“[Do not forget] the moral component of our work – of any job. You spoke about biology and medicine here…Genetic engineering will undoubtedly open up incredible opportunities in pharmacology, new medicines. Altering the human genome if a person suffers from genetic diseases.
“All right, that is good. But there is another part to this process. What does it mean? It means that humans acquire the ability to get into the genetic code that was created by nature – or as religious people say – by Our Lord. What practical consequences can this entail?
“It means that…it is already possible to create an individual with the desired features. This may be a mathematical genius, this may be a talented musician; but this can also be a soldier, an individual who can fight without fear or compassion, mercy or pain…
“What I have just said may be more terrifying than a nuclear bomb. When we do something, whatever we may be doing…we should never forget about the moral, ethical foundations of our work. Whatever we do should benefit people, make them stronger – not destroy them.”
Comparisons are invidious (and in this case would be especially so).