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Morals vs. Machines - by Jon Marshalla

The opinion that Dr. Strangelove unfairly portrays the military and those who might be strong on national defense as "buffoons," undoubtedly fails to realize the true message of this film. First and foremost, it is a dark, satirical comedy, and the incompetency of the high up military officials is designed to be humorous and to satire the sometimes outlandish statements made by advocates of the nuclear arms race who feared the "missile gap."

In my opinion, the real focus of the film is to contrast the "inadequacies" of humans with the lack of morals in machines. In Burgess' article, he states that "War, whatever else it may be, is still the area in which public morality is most terribly and most dramatically tested." Kubrik uses the war setting to effectively portray what happens when a strictly "rational" and "logical" approach to war is taken while disregarding human morality. Through the comedy and the satire, Kubrik established how he saw the world heading towards an almost comical reality. As Burgess also stated, the film portrays men who claim to be moral that are leaving their environment in "the hands of totally amoral Science and their decisions (the very stuff of morality) to gamesmen aspiring through amorality to Science." It represents a vicious circle that leads to a less moral world dominated by "inhuman and passionless machines." Thus, in contrast to those who think that Dr. Strangelove is meant to mock militarists, it expresses the superiority of human fallibility over amoral machines.