EXECUTIVE LECTURE FORUM: Activities: 2000: Abstract: Zakheim

October 17, 2000

The Honorable Dov S. Zakheim, Corporate Vice President of System Planning Corporation, and former Deputy Under Secretary of Defense in the Pentagon.

The well-known national security expert, former Deputy Assistant Secretary Dov S. Zakheim gave a detailed analysis of the present status of our military engagements in the world. He described negatively the Clinton administration’s security policy. He emphasized that presently our military in foreign countries are engaged in so-called "nation building" which is not the mandate of the U.S. armed forces. As examples, Secretary Zakheim enumerated that our military units in Africa are fighting AIDS, and protecting Serbs in Kosovo, despite the fact that the US helped the Albanian forces to win the war, and now the Clinton administration is supporting the losers. Zakheim spoke at great length about the negative effects of our dependence from the United Nation Security Council in military matters. He underlined the need to plan for the future and not go back to the past. In this regard he emphasized that on the one hand we are not building missile defense and on the other we are defenseless against other hostile countries’ missile attacks.. The Secretary considered China the major security threat of the United States, where Beijing leadership is modernizing its army at a fast pace. He concluded that the United States should not be spreading our troops all around the world. Instead it should concentrate on safeguarding America’s real national interests.

© 2003 The Radványi Chair in International Security Studies, Mississippi State University.
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