Magazine article Foreign Affairs

Off-Target

Magazine article Foreign Affairs

Off-Target

Article excerpt

To the Editor:

Not one of the articles in your package "Tomorrow's Military" (September/ October 2016) addresses the impact of climate change on the U.S. armed forces or the world in which they will operate. Yet in a 2015 report to Congress, the U.S. Department of Defense noted that "climate change is an urgent and growing threat to our national security, contributing to increased natural disasters, refugee flows, and conflicts over basic resources such as food and water. These impacts are already occurring, and the scope, scale, and intensity of these impacts are projected to increase over time."

Climate change threatens to flood coastal bases, incapacitate troops and equipment, and destabilize U.S. allies. Responding to these challenges could become a full-time activity for parts of the military, undermining their capacity to carry out traditional missions. The Department of Defense already obliges the U.S. military to consider its resilience to the effects of climate change in all its operations. Surely, those who write on the military's future can do so as well.

MICHAEL KLARE

Five College Professor of Peace and World Security Studies, Amherst College

To the Editor:

The package of essays on U.S. defense policy and national security strategies in the latest issue of Foreign Affairs is welcome and timely, but some of the essays suffer from omissions or faulty assumptions.

As Andrew Bacevich ("Ending Endless War") argues, the vitality and durability of the U. …

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