Today the lives of all Americans are affected in countless ways by forces and events from abroad — seemingly beyond our control. Never before in our history have we experienced an international climate of such complexity, posing at one extreme, threats of incalculable destructive power, and at the other, means and opportunities for lifting humankind to a quality of life unparalleled in human history.
Whether we deter the former and advance toward the latter must not be left to chance among officials whose inexperience requires them to rely on trial and error while learning on the job.
Consider the panoply of problems before us. Over the past generation the power and ambition of radical Islam have metastasized from cells rooted in the Middle East to infect societies throughout the world. Well financed and disposing of weaponry with enormous potential, this ideological menace threatens the stability and way of life of every country on earth.
Separately, but related, through our reliance on energy resources largely under the control of threatened regimes, energy dependent countries have become vulnerable to the disruption of vital resources that could impose economic ruin on much of the world’s economy in a matter of weeks.
Further, the risks inherent in the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction are well known yet remain outside effective control.
Even in the domain of commercial enterprise — historically a blessing offering only positive enhancements to our quality of life — globalization has posed new challenges for America that were unimaginable even a decade ago, generating an urgent need to fashion a better international framework that will enable us to capture the best of globalization, help workers better cope with the challenges, avoid new crises and maintain functionality in commercial and financial markets.
Notwithstanding these challenges, however, there is scope for advancing prosperity for all through the careful exploitation of science and human creativity under enlightened leadership. Whether our country is capable of orchestrating our pursuit of such a course depends fundamentally on who leads us in the years ahead. Never before has there been such a premium on experience and proven leadership. For that reason and in sober consideration of what in our judgment it takes to govern the United States: the ability to parse problems correctly, to bring sound analysis to bear, to define viable strategies, to integrate resources, engage allies, and move decisively to lead our country to viable lasting solutions, we have concluded that Senator John McCain is the most qualified candidate to become our next president. We strongly endorse the candidacy of Senator McCain and as a matter of deep personal conviction, call upon all Americans to join us in that judgment.
George P. Shultz
Henry A. Kissinger
Alexander M. Haig Jr.
Lawrence S. Eagleburger
James R. Schlesinger
John F. Lehman Jr.
R. James Woolsey Jr.
Robert C. McFarlane