May 20, 2015
WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe, senior member of the Senate Armed Services Committee and chairman of the Environment and Public Works Committee, released the following statement in response to President Obama’s commencement address in New London, Connecticut at the United States Coast Guard Academy:
“It’s no wonder that our military personnel's trust in their commander-in-chief is at an all time low. The president’s speech at the Coast Guard Academy stating his belief that climate change poses the greatest threat to future generations is a severe disconnect from reality. On the day he delivered the speech, the leading headline in the press was North Korea’s announcement that it now has the ability to miniaturize nuclear weapons and place it on the tip of a ballistic missile. This comes at a time when the Obama Administration is negotiating a bad deal with Iran, which many - including myself - have expressed concern could lead to a global nuclear arms race. Then there is the fall of Ramadi this week to ISIS. For the past decade, Americans’ invested their blood, sweat and even lives in liberating Iraq from violent oppression, but the president chose to walk away from it by failing to secure a Status of Forces Agreement when the country was at a turning point. Then in Syria, the media is reporting that Syrian President Bashar Assad is using chemical weapons against his citizens again. Assad has all the confidence to do so, because the president of the United States has shown that when he draws a red line, it has no meaning. Former-Sec. Bob Gates confirmed what Congress has been warning — there is no strategy ‘at all’ for the Middle East. This lack of strategy is seeping into the United States, where we have heightened concern for sleeper cells and Americans being radicalized by ISIS propaganda on the internet. The president's repeated failure to understand the real threat to our national security and inability to develop a coherent national security strategy has put this nation at an unknown level of risk with consequences that will span over decades. While the president has spent at least $120 billion on climate change initiatives since first taking office, he has also set into motion more than $1 trillion in budget cuts to our national defense. When I talk to military personnel, whether in Oklahoma or overseas, their greatest concern is not climate change. Instead, what I hear is their concern for global instability, the disarming of America and the lack of vision from their commander-in-chief. When the president speaks to his troops, he should be injecting confidence that their sacrifices will not be in vain and that their investments will ensure a better future for the next generation of Americans. This is not the speech that was given.”
Inhofe visited the U.S. Coast Guard Academy on Friday where he attended the recommitment and promotion ceremony, provided remarks at the reception and shared a meal with the cadets.