— Andrei Sakharov Soviet nuclear physicist and human rights activist 1921 - 1989
Context: Without socialism, bourgeois practices and the egotistical principle of private ownership gave rise to the "people of the abyss" described by Jack London and earlier by Engels.
Only the competition with socialism and the pressure of the working class made possible the social progress of the twentieth century and, all the more, will insure the now inevitable process of rapprochement of the two systems. It took socialism to raise the meaning of labor to the heights of a moral feat. Before the advent of socialism, national egotism gave rise to colonial oppression, nationalism, and racism. By now it has become clear that victory is on the side of the humanistic, international approach.
The capitalist world could not help giving birth to the socialist, but now the socialist world should not seek to destroy by force the ground from which it grew. Under the present conditions this would be tantamount to the suicide of mankind. Socialism should ennoble that ground by its example and other indirect forms of pressure and then merge with it.