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By Kevin Mooney

Instead of prioritizing national security initiatives that could potentially close off emerging points of vulnerability to the U.S., the Obama administration is advancing a radical green agenda at odds with the notion of “peace through strength,” Sen. James Inhofe, R-Okla., told WND.

The Pentagon programs that best exploit America’s technological edge are now in jeopardy, Inhofe warned, because the Defense Department has been directed to devote more of its scarce resources to expensive alternative fuels.

Inhofe also expressed concern that the administration appears set to curtail missile defense at a time when Iran and North Korea are developing delivery systems for nuclear weapons.

Ever since President Reagan proposed the Strategic Defense Initiative, or SDI, in March 1983, a plan that called for a space-based missile shield, environmental groups have worked to discredit and scuttle the program in its various forms.

The Union of Concerned Scientists, for instance, has long argued that anti-missile systems are unworkable and can be overwhelmed by countermeasures and decoys.

Proponents such as Jeff Kueter, president of the George Marshall Institute, counter that technology has not stood still since Reagan’s speech nearly 30 years ago. The ground- and sea-based systems that were installed under President Bush have demonstrated their effectiveness in flight intercept tests at least 80 percent of the time since 2002, according to the U.S. Defense Department’s Missile Defense Agency.

But the ground-based interceptors in Alaska and California, which are backed up by anti-missile systems on U.S. Navy Aegis cruisers, never would have become a reality if green pressure groups had their way.

Just a few weeks before the 9/11 terror attacks, the Natural Resources Defense Council, Greenpeace and Physicians for Social Responsibility filed suit against the Pentagon. They argued that before any missile defense testing could occur in the Pacific, the federal government would have to abide by the 1969 National Environmental Policy Act, which requires government agencies to conduct an environmental impact study before undertaking any proposed action.

Get the truth about global warming, from “The Greatest Hoax: How the global Warming Conspiracy Threatens Your Future” by Sen. James Inhofe and “Eco-Tyranny: How the Left’s Green Agenda will Dismantle America and “Climategate: A Veteran Meteorologist Exposes the Global Warming Scam” by Brian Sussman.

“Environmentalists’ real antipathy or hostility towards missile defense is no different than any other liberal interest or liberal politician’s hostility toward missile defense,” Inhofe said. “It’s simply not their priority. They do not appreciate the idea of ‘peace through strength’ and rather believe disarmament is appropriate.”

Although Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has told members of Congress that North Korea and Iran have accelerated production of missile technology that could directly threaten the U.S., Inhofe noted that Obama continues to slash funding for missile defense.

“Let’ simply take some examples from President Obama’ FY 2013 defense budget request. He has proposed cutting $250 million in THAAD system (Terminal High Altitude Area Defense) procurement,” Inhofe said. “These systems are specifically for intercepting missiles. [Obama has] proposed cutting $175 million in Aegis Standard Missile-3 procurement, our Navy based interception system. He’s proposed cutting $160 million in ballistic missile defense radar procurement. All the while, the proliferation of ballistic missile technologies continues to increase around the world.”

Defense cuts follow discredited global warming theories

While addressing the Environmental Defense Fund during a reception in Washington, D.C., Panetta said that he viewed climate change as a threat to U.S. national security. But Inhofe said the greater threat comes from policy directives that force the Defense Department to expend limited resources on expensive alternative energy.

“The DOD is drastically cutting its personnel, the number of brigade combat teams, tactical fighters and airlift aircraft,” Inhofe said. “Forcing DOD to spend more money on expensive alternative fuels further exacerbates its budget issues.”

Vital programs such as the C-27, Global Hawk Block, C-130 avionics modernization, the F-35, the littoral combat ship, the next generation ballistic missile submarine, the ground combat vehicles are either being postponed or cut back, Inhofe noted.

“Secretary Panetta has an important job and doesn’t need to waste his time trying to perpetuate President Obama’s global warming fantasies or his ongoing war on affordable energy,” Inhofe continued. “He has a real war to win; I’ve always thought a lot of Secretary Panetta, therefore, I can’t believe he caved to President Obama in trying to legitimize global warming alarmism. Every assertion he made is right out of Al Gore’s now debunked science fiction movie.”

The environmental movement’s hostility toward U.S. defense needs has a long history, Inhofe observed. In 2002, green pressure groups succeeded in closing down Navy testing at Vieques, Puerto Rico. The groups built a case against the Navy on environmental allegations and local health effects that could never be substantiated, according to Inhofe’s office.

“The Navy’s decision to permanently end military training at Vieques is enormously disappointing to those of us who have fought to ensure that our troops always have access to the very best training possible,” Inhofe has argued. “It is a sad day for America when we allow a handful of rock-throwing, anti-American agitators and their propaganda-wielding fellow travelers to run us off of property we own, and which we legitimately use for the highest purposes of national security.”

He added: “I believe we are unwisely capitulating to political considerations at the expense of national security, and that this sets a terrible precedent.”

Fortunately, there is a growing recognition of the potential geopolitical fallout to the U.S. that could materialize if green pressure groups continue to shape public policy, Inhofe suggested. If the proposed Keystone XL Pipeline, which would stretch from the tar sands in Alberta, Canada, to refineries in the southern U.S. would die, those resources would still be developed by strategic competitors, he said.

This much has been acknowledged by Austan Goolsbee, a former chairman of the Council of Economic Advisors under Obama. Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper has said he may export the oil to China if the U.S. project is not approved.

“A decision to permanently block the permitting of the Keystone XL Pipeline entirely negates U.S. and North American energy independence,” Inhofe said. “It makes no sense, it is irresponsible and caters to radical environmental interests.”

The Keystone Pipeline is estimated to add over 250,000 permanent jobs for U.S. workers and add more than $100 billion in annual total expenditures to the U.S. economy, according to Inhofe’s office. The pipeline would also have the capacity to provide the U.S. with an additional 700,000 barrels of crude oil each day.

A related point of concern is Section 526 of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, sponsored by Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif., which prohibits the Defense Department from acquiring fuels derived from the oil sands in Canada as a consequence of global warming concerns.

In a letter to addressed to then-Defense Secretary Robert Gates in May 2008, Inhofe wrote:

Section 526 is part of an effort to prevent the Air Force from procuring fuels from some of our nation’s most promising resources. Such a policy will increase America’s reliance on foreign oil. As we continue to face record oil and gasoline prices, Section 526 can be seen for what it is: a counterproductive measure that threatens our national security, our energy security and the strength of our economy.

Democratic and Republican lawmakers have attempted to amend Sec. 526 but to no avail.

Meanwhile, environmental groups continue to send out teams of lawyers and waves of protestors to block national defense programs. However, the U.S. Navy did register an important victory in 2008 when the U.S. Supreme Court in Winter v. Natural Resources overturned a lower court ruling that prohibited sonar training exercises off the coast of California based on the allegation it was harmful to marine life.

“Chief Justice John Roberts posed a common sense question in issuing the decision,” Inhofe said. “What would be worse, speculative harm to an unknown number of marine animals or improper or insufficient military training for submarine exercises?”

WND previously reported contrary to what Panetta told an environmental organization recently, the threat to America’s geopolitical standing comes not from global warming but from anti-energy global warming policies, according to free market policy analysts and national security advocates.

During an annual reception held for the Environmental Defense Fund at the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C., Panetta described how abrupt environmental changes could unsettle populated areas and create international tension.

“The area of climate change has a dramatic impact on national security,” Panetta said at the reception. “Rising sea levels, severe droughts, the melting of the polar caps, the more frequent and devastating natural disasters all raise demand for humanitarian assistance and disaster relief.”

In response to Panetta’s talk, Marc Morano, the editor of Climate Depot, points out that the scientific rationale for restrictive energy policies has been greatly discredited in the past few years. He cites the unfolding “climategate” scandal that has implicated the Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia in Britain. Emails leaked from CRU demonstrate how researchers manipulated and distorted scientific data when they could find no evidence of man-made global warming.

“Aside from the fact that the ‘national security’ angle rests on speculative doomsday scenarios, perhaps the biggest whopper of the new movement is the implication that we must pass the congressional climate bill to ‘address’ or ‘remedy’ the problem and thus ‘avoid’ future wars and loss of life,” Morano said. “Left unanswered in this argument is how a climate bill that will have no detectable impact on global temperatures will help ‘solve’ the alleged looming national security threat.”

Get the truth about global warming, from “The Greatest Hoax: How the global Warming Conspiracy Threatens Your Future” by Sen. James Inhofe and “Eco-Tyranny: How the Left’s Green Agenda will Dismantle America and “Climategate: A Veteran Meteorologist Exposes the Global Warming Scam” by Brian Sussman.

 

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