Standing in the hanger of an American airbase in England, Joe Biden had plenty of memorable moments. He botched the name of the Royal Air Force, got a bit of a scolding from his wife, and kept the troops at attention because, he chuckled, "I keep forgetting I'm president." As if he didn't have enough trouble being taken seriously, Biden wanted servicemembers to know that our biggest threat isn't China, Iran, or North Korea -- it's climate change. "This is not a joke," he said. But it sure sounded like one.
"You know, when I went over to the tank in the Pentagon when I was first was elected vice president with President Obama, the military sat us down and let us know what the greatest threats facing America were -- the greatest physical threats," Biden said. "This is not a joke. You know what the Joint Chiefs told us the greatest physical threat facing America was? Global warming." He talked about the coming "population movements, fights over land," and people in Southeast Asia "sinking below the sea..."
The new commander-in-chief, who plans to spend most of his first trip outside the U.S. talking to our European allies about climate change, insists that everyone needs to "commit to an ambitious climate action if we're going to prevent the worst impacts of climate change, limiting global warming to no more than 1.5 degrees Celsius..." As the troops listened, a good number of them had to be missing the good old days when national security was about fighting real enemies -- not the thermometer (in battle dress uniform, not maternity flight suits). And yet, in just a handful of months, this administration has already started turning the military into a sophisticated force for social change.
That was spelled out loud and clear in the new Biden budget, where the Defense Department seemed committed to two things: combatting conservative "extremists" and fighting the invisible foe of global warming. "The military must adapt to the ways the natural environment is changing," the Pentagon wrote. That includes pumping almost $700 million taxpayer dollars into initiatives on both fronts -- at the expense, many would point out, of actual equipment and training to fight our real enemies.
"As climate change melts the Arctic, it will prompt growing competition for resources and influence in the region," Biden's brass says. Obviously, the president is stuck in 2015, when Obama's most important mission was sending our troops to the frozen tundra to measure ice. It was an absurd idea then -- and it's even more ridiculous now. The military's focus shouldn't be ice -- it should be ISIS! And they aren't the only ones who think so. In May, Gallup asked Americans what they thought the most important problem facing the nation is. "Climate change" barely cracked three percent -- but "the government and poor leadership" (not surprising, given this administration's priorities) was number one!
Even General Mark Milley, who testified before Congress last Friday, admitted that while climate change "is a threat," he puts China and Iran "up there" too. Like a lot of Republicans, Sen. Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.) could only shake his head. "I just think it's peculiar that the president would go to another continent and tell our service members there that the No. 1 threat is climate change, albeit a threat."
Frankly, I'm sure most of the men and women in our military wished climate change was our biggest problem. But in an increasingly dangerous world like ours, they don't have the luxury of worrying about the rainforests while radical regimes work to wipe us off the map. What's the point of saving the earth if we only end up in a nuclear war? If the Joint Chiefs of Staff really said that climate change is our greatest threat, former President Donald Trump argued, "he ought to immediately fire [them] for being incompetent!"
It's just another example of how wildly out of touch Biden is -- and how beholden he is to the far-Left radicals that helped elect him. If this administration is willing to sacrifice American security for some Sierra Club kudos, then more voters will wish they could forget he was president too.