'Green' Issues Become Force in Driving US Foreign Policy

By George Moffett, writer of The Christian Science Monitor | The Christian Science Monitor, April 8, 1996 | Go to article overview

'Green' Issues Become Force in Driving US Foreign Policy


George Moffett, writer of The Christian Science Monitor, The Christian Science Monitor


FOR decades, the United States has defined national security threats in terms of nuclear arsenals, arms balances, and hostile alliances.

But since the end of the cold war, policymakers have become increasingly attentive to "natural" occurrences, such as poverty and overpopulation, that are often the underlying causes of the political and social disorder that can implicate US interests abroad.

The growing importance of environmental concerns in foreign-policy making will be underscored when Secretary of State Warren Christopher gives what is being billed as a major speech at Stanford University in Palo Alto, Calif., tomorrow. Mr. Christopher is expected to highlight the need to factor in famine, water shortages, greenhouse gasses, and other concerns when conducting foreign diplomacy. The address coincides with the implementation of a recent Christopher directive to State Department officials to pay closer heed to environmental issues. "I expect regional bureaus to identify how environment, population, and resource issues affect key US interests," Christopher instructed top department officials in an internal memo in February. "There's a growing appreciation of how environmental factors interact with our diplomacy," elaborates a senior department official. "The purpose of the initiative is to consolidate the lessons we've learned over the past three years and to bring them more fully to public attention." One such lesson was learned in Haiti, where the overthrow of a democratically elected president and the subsequent exodus of refugees to the US combined to create a major foreign-policy problem for Presidents Bush and Clinton. Many experts believe the real source of the country's troubles lies with the widespread deforestation, soil erosion, and water shortages that have left tens of thousands of Haitians without a livelihood. "There's a direct link between this and why the government was overthrown and why 50,000 migrants left Haiti in 1994," says the State Department source. "You can't say deforestation alone created the political problems in Haiti but it contributed to poverty and thus to an unstable situation," adds the senior official. "There's no question those factors will make the challenge of political and economic reconstruction in Haiti much more difficult." Emerging 'green' issues Other problems department officials are worried about: food shortages resulting from population growth and disappearing cropland; scarce water resources leading to conflict within or between states; overcrowded cities swelled by migrants from environmentally wasted rural areas; and political unrest caused by the inability of poor nations to keep up with the demands of populations with doubling times of 25 years or less.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

'Green' Issues Become Force in Driving US Foreign Policy
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.