Gen. Paul Selva: al-Qaida and ISIS do not present an existential threat to the United States
During his confirmation hearing Tuesday in front of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Air Force Gen. Paul Selva said Russia, China, Iran and North Korea are the nations most able to threaten the United States.
Selva is President Obama’s nominee to be the next vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to succeed Navy Adm. James A. Winnefeld Jr. to become the tenth vice chairman.
Leaving ISIS off the list surprised Senate Armed Services Committee chairman Sen. John McCain who inquired to why Selva didn’t mention then.
Selva puts the terror groups threat in a separate category saying al-Qaida and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant have the desire and capability to attack the American homeland, they do not present an existential threat to the United States.
Instead. he went on to say the Russia is the “preeminent threat” due to the fact they possess conventional and nuclear capabilities, which Russian leaders could choose to use.
Selva said the threat posed by ISIL and similar extremist organizations is one that must be dealt with, but it’s regional in nature. “ISIL does not possess the tools or the capabilities to threaten the existence of the United States as we know it,” he said.
Selva is currently the commander of U.S. Transportation Command.