February 5th, 2010
07:00 PM ET
13 years ago

Clinton names biggest threats to U.S.

(CNN) - The biggest threats to America's national security come not from Iran or North Korea, but from trans-national non-state actors, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told CNN's Candy Crowley in an exclusive interview to air Sunday.

"Most of us believe the greater threats are the trans-national non-state networks, primarily the extremists – the fundamentalist Islamic extremists who are connected to al Qaeda in the Arab Peninsula," Clinton said. "Or al Qaeda in Pakistan and Afghanistan."

"They continue to try to increase the sophistication of their capacity," the nation's top diplomat added. "The attacks that they're going to make and the…biggest nightmare that any of us have is that one of these terrorist member organizations within this syndicate of terror will get their hands on a weapon of mass destruction."

In the wide-ranging interview that will air on CNN's "State of the Union with Candy Crowley," Clinton also said Iran's latest behavior is a clear indication the country has nuclear ambitions.

"It's like an old saying that if you see a turtle on a fence post in the middle of the woods, he didn't get there by accident, right? Somebody's put him there. And so you draw conclusions from what you see Iran doing," she said.

Clinton specifically pointed to Iran's rejection late last month of a proposal by the International Atomic Energy Agency calling for the country give up a significant portion of its low-enriched uranium in exchange for fuel for Tehran's research reactor. Iran has maintained its nuclear program is only for peaceful purposes.

The full interview will air Sunday at 9 a.m. ET.

soundoff (117 Responses)
  1. What's Right is Right!

    Anyone who thinks that raising taxes and mandating healthcare, which causes businesses to layoff employees, in order to fund worthless programs that give money to those same employees, thus preventing them from having a job to return to, or the desire to do so, and instead become slaves to the government and be forced to have the Democrat National Communist Party's ideology shoved down their throats, should be on this list. But I guess Clinton figured that smart people already knew that.

    February 5, 2010 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  2. Donkey Party

    To GREGOIRE @ 4:50 –

    "blatantly rediculous"? First of all, it's spelled "ridiculous", and secondly, something "ridiculous" would already be "blatant", dummy. Did you learn this at the School of Redundancy School?

    February 5, 2010 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  3. Pelosi is a see-you-en-tea

    How typical that someone that calls themself "Donkey Party" is trying to take away another's (Duece's) freedom of speech cause it doesn't agree with their opinion...

    February 5, 2010 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  4. Dean

    Hey Doug, Impeach Obama ? for what? Lying to the people of the US about Iraq's WMD's and getting us into a 9 year long war that has sucked us dry.. nope that was Bush, Evedropping on our phone and internet conversations? nope again that was Bush. Running the economy into the ditch,, nope once again that was Bush. Hey Listen Doug you best turn off Fox News it's rotting your brain.

    February 5, 2010 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  5. Glen

    Coming from Hilary I thought she would be speaking of Brad Pitt, Oliver Stone and the fat man who did Sicko. Then I read the article and she was doing a Foreign Affairs gig. Nice Hillary, good to see you are still at the office. I didn't see the byline – this comment was approved by Eric Holder, hope it doesn't get you into trouble.

    February 5, 2010 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  6. Glen Beck is king of the morons

    People that believe Rush,Beck and Faux News are owned by corporate Fascists.

    February 5, 2010 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  7. ObamasRecordDefict

    The biggest threat is OBOZO, REID, PELOSI, BOXER, SCHUMER, and some other socialist morons.

    February 5, 2010 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  8. Clark

    this is what the military has taught its members since the 1980's ... and yet we still have isolationists in America and people that think we should only defend ourselves after the enemy attacks within our borders. Example: the liberals believe we shouldn't be in Iraq and Afghanistan .......

    February 5, 2010 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  9. RP

    The biggest threat to the US is not non-state actors. Even if they used a weapon of mass destruction, they would not threaten the survival of our nation. Our biggest threat to our way of life remains nations that can actually destroy our nation – those with the means and the ability to do us harm on a vast scale. Terrorist groups simply will not ever have the same ability as other nations do.

    February 5, 2010 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  10. JP

    Obama economic polocies are the biggest threat to the U.S. pro lawyer pro union.

    February 5, 2010 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  11. Death Assurance Companies

    The biggest threat are the nuts like TCM that have had the chip implanted in their head and use a lot of names on here to make us think that there are that many morons in the world.

    February 5, 2010 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  12. jules sand-perkins

    The greatest threat to this country is the ever-growing mass among its people, egalitarian from the bottom up and smugly entitled, who could not possibly understand President Kennedy's statement, "ask not what your country can do for you..."

    February 5, 2010 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  13. Ger

    Once again Hilary-girl is proving how totally inadequate she is for ANY government post, much less the one she is holding. Where's Connie when you need her?

    February 5, 2010 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  14. newenglandcutie

    obama'srecorddeficit is 100% CORRECT...........The biggest threat is OBOZO, REID, PELOSI, BOXER, SCHUMER, and some other socialist morons. dems.............here is the question of the day..........ready? "CAN YOU HERE US NOW!!!!!?"

    February 5, 2010 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  15. george from alaska

    ...add Palin to that list!

    From our local Anchorage, Alaska TV news on Channel 11:

    "The Washington Post is trying hard to take the pressure off the White House by creating a side controversy, but it is missing the point: as the Governor has said, it doesn't matter who says the 'r' word: it should no longer be part of our lexicon," she said.

    Stapelton is Palin's spokesperson.

    Hey, is there anybody in there Palin camp? Palin is NOT the Governor!

    February 5, 2010 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  16. Josh

    She forgot to say one of the other biggest threats is the Republican party and Fox News also known as the American Taliban.

    February 5, 2010 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  17. Bush's Favorite Things: Blanky, Bikey & Nappy

    Is there some reason she forgot to mention an ex-governor of Alaska and her toxic band of good-for-nuthins?

    February 5, 2010 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  18. adamch

    hey Donkey Party, do you have any ideas or opinions or insights on anything, or are you just here to spew bile. I went through YOUR posts and all you do is cast insults. You know what is the greatest threat to the conversation? Donkey Party.

    February 5, 2010 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  19. Mike in MN

    I believe progressives are the biggest threat to America.
    Especially Obama and Pelosi who are determined to spend us into oblivion.
    Fortunatly I believe independent voters and Blue Dog democrats in congress are more and more agreeing. Well maybe not that progressives pushing out of control spending rank up there with al Qaeda. But they are more and more agreeing that the spending has to stop now, not latter.
    Obama likes to claim everything he does is unpresedented, no one would argure that his spending and deficits are not. No one living or dead has ever seen the current levels of either.
    Obama's supporters claim he is brilliant, and Obama makes no attempt to disagree. Yet he claims his budget is full of deficit cutting measures and yet it grows the deficit by an increase of 256 billion over last year. You don't have to be brilliant to know that the deficit is not reduced when in fact it grows. A brilliant man like Obama would have to know his claims are not true. So what is his game? Who is he trying to fool and why?

    February 5, 2010 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  20. ILoveCNN

    From time to time, Hillary will try to do something or say something to remind people that she still works for the Obama Administration.

    February 5, 2010 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  21. Jim

    If the far right can lie their way back into power, there will be a facist dictatorship in this country. Beware of the private security firms (private armies like Blackwater) in the middle east. We call those who control them "Warloads". Or the militias of the TRUE? Americans.

    What makes the hateful, bigoted right wing think that they are the only people who should be in America and share in its riches? America is starting to look like the Germany of the 1930's. Hitler blamed the Jews for problems. Here the hateful right blame the poor, Blacks, Hispanics and anyone who doesn't share their religion.

    The biggest socialist instution on earth is the US military. It's taxpayer owned. But the Right has no problem with that, do they? These people are scarier than North Korea could ever hope to be. They are cut from the same cloth as Al Qaeda and the Taliban. God Help America!

    February 5, 2010 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  22. jake

    a threat to this country are the liberals theyshould be rounded up and ship to china and russia and try to harass there governments and express there views they would be thrown in jail real quick they should be grateful they live in a country that we call America

    February 5, 2010 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  23. Jimmy James

    She can't even call them "terrorists". They are " trans-national non-state actors". UGH! Don't want to offend anybody huh? I feel so much safer now.

    February 5, 2010 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  24. Mike in MN

    I find the posts from those who seem to think the only opposition to Obama's agenda are right wing nuts who get all their info from Beck and Hannitly and Palin and Rove and Limbaugh and Fox News.
    The same door knobs that post that crap clearly do not access a very wide varity of news outlets themselves. They must only watch MSNBC.
    I read articles everyday in the Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Chicago Tribune, Denver Post, Detroit News, Forbes and even sometimes the New York Times and Los Angeles Times that are critical of Obama and the Democrats agenda. There are also articles in these publications that support Obama. And the ones that are critical say pretty much what I hear on Fox News. I really don't have to watch Fox News at all to access opinoins that are critical of the spending, deficits, health care reform, cap and trade, the stimulus and more.
    If the door knobs who really seem to think all the oppostion stems from a few pundits on Fox News, they clearly are not very well informed themselves.

    February 5, 2010 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  25. Mike, formerly from Syracuse

    @Ryan, until yesterday the Dems had a filibuster proof majority, so what the heck are you talking about? Stop listening to Obama's fictional version of life and you'll be better off. Also of the 5 states with unemployment over 12% (MI, CA, NV, RI, SC), all but SC voted for Obozo. Throw in DC at 12.1% and 5 of 6 are BLUE. So once again you're WRONG!

    February 5, 2010 06:21 pm at 6:21 pm |
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