During opening remarks to the Senate Intelligence Committee on Wednesday, National Intelligence Director James Clapper sought to illustrate and identify the complex and varied nature of threats the intelligence community is responsible for handling.
Those issues not only extend to national security and instability in other countries, but also to other changes facing the world’s population such as increased demand for energy, water and food, the country’s top intelligence officer said.
“Looking back over my more than half a century in intelligence I have not experienced a time when we’ve been beset by more crises and threats around the globe. My list is long.”
Clapper also told the panel of lawmakers terrorism has diversified and is loosely connected between domestic events such as the Boston Marathon bombing and the conflict in Syria, which he called “a growing center of radical extremism.”
Russia and China are working to assert their place in the world, Clapper said, while the situation in Iran has been “challenging” and political uprisings taking place in countries such as Ukraine, Burma, Thailand and Bangladesh.