Albright: Climate Change Gravest National Security Concern

Kerry Picket Political Reporter
Font Size:

WASHINGTON — Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright reiterated remarks that President Obama made at the State of the Union, telling members of the Senate Armed Services Committee Thursday that her gravest concern relating to national security is climate change.

Albright appeared as a witness at the hearing about national security alongside former Secretaries of State Henry Kissinger and George Schultz.

“I do believe the biggest threat is climate change in its national security aspect as has been described, and it leaves me to say the following thing,” said Albright who served in President Bill Clinton’s cabinet. “Our problem is not every problem can be handled militarily and that we also have a short attention span. These are very long-term problems.”

South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham, who sits on the Armed Services Committee and supports the view that climate change is caused by humans, responded to Albright, telling The Daily Caller, “I think the problem for our Democratic colleagues is that they’re overselling the threat. They made it a religion not a problem, and their solution is draconian.”

A report released by the Department of Defense in late 2014 showed the country’s top military brass endorsed the view that climate change is a substantial threat to national security.

“Climate change is a ‘threat multiplier’ … because it has the potential to exacerbate many of the challenges we already confront today — from infectious disease to armed insurgencies — and to produce new challenges in the future,” now outgoing Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel said in October at the Conference of Defense Ministers of the Americas in Arequipa, Peru.

He went on to say in his remarks, “We must be clear-eyed about the security threats presented by climate change, and we must be pro-active in addressing them.”