August 9, 2009
Climate Change Seen as Threat to U.S. Security
By JOHN M. BRODER
WASHINGTON — The changing global climate will pose profound strategic challenges to the United States in coming decades, raising the prospect of military intervention to deal with the effects of violent storms, drought, mass migration and pandemics, military and intelligence analysts say.
Such climate-induced crises could topple governments, feed terrorist movements or destabilize entire regions, say the analysts, experts at the Pentagon and intelligence agencies who for the first time are taking a serious look at the national security implications of climate change.
Recent war games and intelligence studies conclude that over the next 20 to 30 years, vulnerable regions, particularly sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East and South and Southeast Asia, will face the prospect of food shortages, water crises and catastrophic flooding driven by climate change that could demand an American humanitarian relief or military response.
In the Absurdistan that America has become, a headline such as appears above actually found its home in print at the New York Times. Read it and weep. Or laugh. One is as effective as the other in the place we find ourselves.
It is not enough that we poisoned the world economic well, bringing the planet to the edge of the monetary abyss. It is apparently not sufficient that we–nearly alone among nations–feed upon sweat-shop labor for our consumables, while wrecking or own middle and working classes for what we deem to be their own benefit. After half a century of denial, the admission that we pretty much shit the bed, planet-wise, brings us to war-games scenarios at the National Defense University.
No longer bread or cake, long past the choice of guns or butter, we are actually incorporating climate change into national security strategy planning . Counting the bullets, are they?Gonna stop ’em at the gates?
Man, the only animal capable of philosophically contemplating its own death, has gazed into the scientific crystal ball and finally seen its reflection. We know we have doomed ourselves. We know we could have made different choices. We know our profitable and consumerist lifestyle must take a hit to avoid either (or both) of the above realities.
And yet, we just won’t. We have stomped our national foot, like children in the check-out line, whining for the candy that rots our teeth.
Nature’s most elegant experiment to date, humankind, deserves to lose its dominance over the planet–and lose, it surely will. George Carlin put it elegantly and concisely (as was his special talent) when he said the planet is not in any danger at all. The planet is just fine. It’s man who is about to disappear.