William S. Cohen

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William S. Cohen (circa 1997)

William Sebastian Cohen (born August 28, 1940) is an American author and politician from the U.S. state of Maine. A Republican, Cohen served as both a member of the United States House of Representatives and Senate, and as Secretary of Defense (1997–2001) under Democratic President Bill Clinton.


  • The mere fear that there is a mole within an agency can set off a chain reaction and a hunt for that particular mole which can paralyze the agency for weeks and months and years even, in a search. The same thing is true about just the false scare of a threat of using some kind of a chemical weapon or a biological one. There are some reports, for example, that some countries have been trying to construct something like an Ebola Virus, and that would be a very dangerous phenomenon, to say the least. Alvin Toffler has written about this in terms of some scientists in their laboratories trying to devise certain types of pathogens that would be ethnic specific so that they could just eliminate certain ethnic groups and races; and others are designing some sort of engineering, some sort of insects that can destroy specific crops. Others are engaging even in an eco- type of terrorism whereby they can alter the climate, set off earthquakes, volcanoes remotely through the use of electromagnetic waves.
    So there are plenty of ingenious minds out there that are at work finding ways in which they can wreak terror upon other nations. It's real, and that's the reason why we have to intensify our efforts, and that's why this is so important.

Quotes about[edit]

  • What do all those magazine stories look like years later? Reading your own journalism is like finding your diary from high school. It makes you blush. Could I really have been that naive and self-important? Yep. And nasty, too. I once wrote a profile of William Cohen, who for a time was Bill Clinton’s secretary of defense. Cohen wasn’t an especially commanding figure, but he was an awfully nice man. You could sense that the moment you met him. Why did I feel the need to mock the syrupy poetry he’d written about his first wife? I can’t remember now. I wish I hadn’t.
    • Tucker Carlson, The Long Slide: Thirty Years in American Journalism (2021)

External links[edit]

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  • William Cohen at the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress