News / USA

Obama Security Team Faces New Challenges

Obama Security Team Faces New Challenges, New Prioritiesi
X
February 06, 2013 12:13 AM
President Barack Obama begins his second term with new challenges overseas. VOA’s Kent Klein reports from the White House on the changes facing the new secretary of state as well as the secretary of defense and director of the CIA, when they are confirmed.
Kent Klein
President Barack Obama begins his second term with new challenges overseas.

In nominating former Senator Chuck Hagel as defense secretary, President Obama acknowledged that his team will deal with a changing world.

“Ending the war in Afghanistan and caring for those who have borne the battle, preparing for the full range of threats, from the unconventional to the conventional, including things like cyber security…,” Obama said.

In his Senate confirmation hearing, Hagel said, if confirmed, he would confront new issues as the U.S. brings its troops home from Afghanistan.

"That does not mean the threats we face and will continue to face, are any less dangerous or complicated.  In fact, it is quite the opposite. Recent events in Mali and Algeria remind us clearly of this reality," Hagel said.

Hagel’s fellow Republican, former Senator Richard Lugar, says the new priorities will have to be accomplished with smaller defense budgets and with a Pentagon that is stressed “... as they take a look at all the changes that have to be made, even at a time that we are still at war in Afghanistan,  have great responsibilities, for that matter, all over the world, where we still have troops stationed,” Lugar said.

With the administration shifting away from land wars, CIA operations, including drones and targeted killings, may take on a greater role.

“A much less expensive role, if you got it right, than sending battalions of troops and having all the logistic support, but at the same time, requiring extraordinary intelligence resources," Lugar said.
 
A recently revealed Justice Department memo says it's legal for the government to kill U.S. citizens abroad if it believes they are senior al-Qaida leaders working to kill Americans.

President Obama's pick for CIA director, John Brennan, has said targeted killings against certain terrorists are legal, ethical and necessary.

The diplomatic arm of the team is Former Senator John Kerry. He has been confirmed as Secretary of State.

Stopping Iran and North Korea from advancing nuclear weapons programs will be an urgent task.

Kerry told the Senate he will do whatever necessary to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.
 
"And I repeat here today: Our policy is not containment, it is prevention, and the clock is ticking on our efforts to secure responsible compliance," Kerry said.

On his first day at the State Department, Kerry phoned Israeli and Palestinian leaders and made a commitment to help them pursue peace.

You May Like

Video Protests Continue in Ferguson, Spread to Other US Cities

Missouri officials say deployment of more than 2,000 National Guard soldiers helps curb second night of rampant arson and looting in Midwestern town More

Video Ebola, Crackdown on Illegals Hit Business in Guangzhou

Chinese city has largest community of Africans in Asia More

Video Legendary Lebanese Actress, Singer Sabah Dies at 87

Music and film diva, affectionately called 'Sabbouha' by millions of her fans, performed at Carnegie Hall in New York, Royal Albert Hall in London, Olympia in Paris, Sydney Opera House in Sydney More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Aung San Suu Kyi: Myanmar Opposition to Keep Pushing for Constitutional Changei
X
November 24, 2014 10:09 PM
Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi says she and her supporters will continue pushing to amend a constitutional clause that bars her from running for president next year. VOA's Than Lwin Htun reports from the capital Naypyitaw in this report narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video Aung San Suu Kyi: Myanmar Opposition to Keep Pushing for Constitutional Change

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi says she and her supporters will continue pushing to amend a constitutional clause that bars her from running for president next year. VOA's Than Lwin Htun reports from the capital Naypyitaw in this report narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video Mali Attempts to Shut Down Ebola Transmission Chain

Senegal and Nigeria were able to stop small Ebola outbreaks by closely monitoring those who had contact with the sick person and quickly isolating anyone with symptoms. Mali is now scrambling to do the same. VOA’s Anne Look reports from Mali on what the country is doing to shut down the chain of transmission.
Video

Video Ukraine Marks Anniversary of Deadly 1930s Famine

During a commemoration for millions who died of starvation in Ukraine in the early 1930s, President Petro Poroshenko lashed out at Soviet-era totalitarianism for causing the deaths and accused today’s Russian-backed rebels in the east of using similar tactics. VOA’s Daniel Shearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests at a Crossroads

New public opinion polls in Hong Kong indicate declining support for pro-democracy demonstrations after weeks of street protests. VOA’s Bill Ide in Guangzhou and Pros Laput in Hong Kong spoke with protesters and observers about whether demonstrators have been too aggressive in pushing for change.
Video

Video US Immigration Relief Imminent for Mixed-Status Families

Tens of thousands of undocumented immigrants in the Washington, D.C., area may benefit from a controversial presidential order announced this week. It's not a path to citizenship, as some activists hoped. But it will allow more immigrants who arrived as children or who have citizen children, to avoid deportation and work legally. VOA's Victoria Macchi talks with one young man who benefited from an earlier presidential order, and whose parents may now benefit after years of living in fear.
Video

Video New Skateboard Defies Gravity

A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

With the price of oil now less than $80 a barrel, motorists throughout the United States are benefiting from gas prices below $3 a gallon. But as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the decreasing price of petroleum has a downside for the hydraulic fracturing industry in the United States.
Video

Video Tensions Build on Korean Peninsula Amid Military Drills

It has been another tense week on the Korean peninsula as Pyongyang threatened to again test nuclear weapons while the U.S. and South Korean forces held joint military exercises in a show of force. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from the Kunsan Air Base in South Korea.
Video

Video Mama Sarah Obama Honored at UN Women’s Entrepreneurship Day

President Barack Obama's step-grandmother is in the United States to raise money to build a $12 million school and hospital center in Kogelo, Kenya, the birthplace of the president's father, Barack Obama, Sr. She was honored for her decades of work to aid poor Kenyans at a Women's Entrepreneurship Day at the United Nations.
Video

Video Ebola Economic Toll Stirs W. Africa Food Security Concerns

The World Bank said Wednesday that it expects the economic impact of the Ebola outbreak on the sub-Saharan economy to cost somewhere betweenf $3 billion to $4 billion - well below a previously-outlined worst-case scenario of $32 billion. Some economists, however, paint a gloomier picture - warning that the disruption to regional markets and trading is considerable. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Chaos, Abuse Defy Solution in Libya

The political and security crisis in Libya is deepening, with competing governments and, according to Amnesty International, widespread human rights violations committed with impunity. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video US Hosts Record 866,000 Foreign Students

Close to 900,000 international students are studying at American universities and colleges, more than ever before. About half of them come from Asia, mostly China. The United States hosts more foreign students than any other country in the world, and its foreign student population is steadily growing. Zlatica Hoke reports.

All About America

AppleAndroid