Spy Chief: Economic Crisis a Greater Threat than Terror
Security assessment warns that downturn could cause widespread instability
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 13, 2009 3:32 AM CST
Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair testifies on Capitol Hill yesterday before the Senate Intelligence Committee.   (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
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(Newser) – The new director of national intelligence warned Congress yesterday that the global economic crisis poses a graver and more immediate threat to the US than international terror, the New York Times reports. The crisis could undermine national governments and cause widespread civil unrest as it spreads and deepens, causing serious damage to America's strategic interests, warned Dennis Blair.

Blair's threat assessment also warned of a deteriorating security situation in Afghanistan, for which Hamid Karzai's government was largely to blame. Despite his stark assessment the danger posed by the economic crisis, Blair said he wouldn't be taking the focus off Iran, North Korea and Afghanistan. "I won’t be turning satellites to look at GDP accounts,” he said.