The Danger of Desensitization

In the course of the next three decades, the spread and advancement of information and communication technologies will enable people to follow international crises ever more closely, making it increasingly difficult to ignore the disparity between how the world's haves and have-nots are affected by climate change. As noted in a recent report by the UK Ministry of Defense's Development, Concepts, and Doctrine Center, however, the very words and images that at first will catalyze action could over time lose their impact: "Societies in the developed and developing worlds may become increasingly inured to stories of conflict, famine and death in these areas and, to an extent, desensitized."99

Ultimately, the threat of desensitization could prove one of the gravest threats of all, for it is clear that the national security and foreign policy challenges posed by climate change are tightly interwoven with the moral challenge of helping those least responsible to cope with its effects. And if the international community fails to meet either set of challenges, it will fail to meet them both.

+1 0

Post a comment