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National Security


The phrase 'national security' often elicits a multitude of interpretation from different segments of the populace. Essentially though, national security is the process and mechanism designed to protect the nation and its interests from an internal/ or foreign political, military and/or economic threat.

Obviously, these threats have evolved in modern times. For the latter half of the previous century, the country's primary focus on national security was the Soviet Union and the threat of a thermonuclear holocaust. Our resources were directed almost exclusively towards strengthening our military and cultivating strategic national allies.

The present age, however, has seen the potential source of threats evolving and expanding into a wider and more complex variant. A direct invasion or nuclear strike has long been supplemented by more unique, but equally dangerous threats.


(i) Cyber terrorism
(ii) Foreign energy dependence
(iii) Currency/financial market manipulation
(iv) Non-state terrorism

What are the candidates' views on the subject?



Current President of the United States

Barack Obama

Presidential Candidate Barack Obama
Obama Position on National Security

• He voted against the original Patriot Act of 2001 and later for bills reauthorizing the act as a
compromise, believing the new version is still better than what the White House originally proposed
and does modestly improve the Patriot Act by strengthening civil liberty protection without
sacrificing the tools that law enforcement needs to keep us safe.

• Obama wants Homeland Security money targeted more towards high-risk areas such as nuclear facilities, chemical plants and ports.

•• He introduced legislation to enhance disaster preparedness and to strengthen the security of chemical plants and drinking water security.

• He wants more quality tracking of nuclear technology and spent nuclear fuel so that it doesn't end up in terrorist hands.

• When asked to describe the Obama doctrine for the use of force when there was no security issue in the offing, he replied, "Well, we may not always have national security issues at stake, but we have moral issues at stake."

• When asked, during his presidential interview with Katie Couric of CBS News, to explain a national security situation when it was appropriate to lie to the American people, Obama was of the opinion, "I don't think it's appropriate to lie. I mean, you can put together a hypothetical where there is a national security emergency that is imminent. And you don?t want to provide, for example, the location of our troops. You don't have to lie in those situations. You simply say, "We're not answering questions."

• Barack Obama thinks that the problems of terrorism are one of the most terrible threats that the US faces.

• "The way we have to approach the problem of Islamic extremism, is we have to hunt down those who would resort to violence to move their ideology forward. We should be going after al Qaeda and those networks fiercely and effectively," stated Obama on CNN Late Edition July 13th 2008.

• Human rights and national security are complementary, stated Obama when he was questioned about whether human rights were more important than American national security.

• Laura Flanders on 11th November 2007 quoted Obama saying, "The threat that we face now is nowhere near as dire as it was in the Cold War. We shouldn?t allow our politics to be driven by the fear of terrorism."

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