Sep 102013

President Obama addressed the nation on Syria tonight. You should have watched, but in case you did not or would just like to watch again…

America must now decide how we want to move forward as a nation. Do we want to continue in a leadership role or are we to be content with sitting back and being a follower and a has-been? I believe the President very clearly laid out tonight which path he would choose.

Our ideals and principles, as well as our national security, are at stake in Syria, along with our leadership of a world where we seek to ensure that the worst weapons will never be used.

America is not the world’s policeman. Terrible things happen across the globe, and it is beyond our means to right every wrong. But when, with modest effort and risk, we can stop children from being gassed to death, and thereby make our own children safer over the long run, I believe we should act. That’s what makes America different. That’s what makes us exceptional. With humility, but with resolve, let us never lose sight of that essential truth.

A transcript of President Obama’s remarks follows the break.

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 Posted by at 14:18  Middle East, Politics
Aug 312013

President Obama on the use of chemical weapons in Syria:

Now, after careful deliberation, I have decided that the United States should take military action against Syrian regime targets. This would not be an open-ended intervention. We would not put boots on the ground. Instead, our action would be designed to be limited in duration and scope. But I’m confident we can hold the Assad regime accountable for their use of chemical weapons, deter this kind of behavior, and degrade their capacity to carry it out.

Our military has positioned assets in the region. The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs has informed me that we are prepared to strike whenever we choose. Moreover, the Chairman has indicated to me that our capacity to execute this mission is not time-sensitive; it will be effective tomorrow, or next week, or one month from now. And I’m prepared to give that order.

But having made my decision as Commander-in-Chief based on what I am convinced is our national security interests, I’m also mindful that I’m the President of the world’s oldest constitutional democracy. I’ve long believed that our power is rooted not just in our military might, but in our example as a government of the people, by the people, and for the people. And that’s why I’ve made a second decision: I will seek authorization for the use of force from the American people’s representatives in Congress.

Over the last several days, we’ve heard from members of Congress who want their voices to be heard. I absolutely agree. So this morning, I spoke with all four congressional leaders, and they’ve agreed to schedule a debate and then a vote as soon as Congress comes back into session.

He has decided that military intervention in Syria is called for but, given all the noise that has been forthcoming from the Congress critters over the past several days, he has also decided to let them have their say. We shall now see if they really are willing to put their money where their mouths are. Let the consequences of any action or inaction on our part be on their heads since that seems to be where they want it to be.

The full transcript of the President’s remarks follows the break.

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Attack in Benghazi

 Posted by at 14:50  Middle East, Politics
Sep 122012

By now you will have heard the news of the attack on our embassy in Benghazi, Libya and the loss of four American lives in that attack — including the United States Ambassador to Libya. Here is President Obama’s statement on that attack.

Some of you may have witnessed Mitt Romney’s race to the microphones this morning to issue his own statement. I would respectfully remind those who may have listened to what Mitt Romney had to say that Mitt Romney holds no position in the government of the United States nor does he in any way speak for this country or her citizens. Enough about that.

A transcript of President Obama’s remarks follows the break.

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Iraq War ending

 Posted by at 14:26  Middle East, Politics
Oct 212011

It’s been a long, long time since George W. Bush declared “Mission Accomplished” in Iraq. Today, President Obama announced that we are ending our engagement in Iraq. All of our troops will be home by the end of this year. Bush’s War is finally winding down.

Over the next two months, our troops in Iraq—tens of thousands of them—will pack up their gear and board convoys for the journey home. The last American soldiers will cross the border out of Iraq—with their heads held high, proud of their success, and knowing that the American people stand united in our support for our troops. That is how America’s military efforts in Iraq will end.

Full transcript follows the break.

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Jun 222011

President Obama addressed the nation this evening on “The Way Forward in Afghanistan.” He outlined the expected troop withdrawal from that country and explained exactly what our goals are and were in that conflict. He also stressed the importance of all Americans working together to rebuild our own country. The speech was carried live by all the major television networks, but in case you missed it…

(I love the way they stage these things, by the way. It looks like he’s standing in some European castle, doesn’t it?)

Transcript follows the break.

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Israel’s borders

 Posted by at 13:38  Middle East, Politics
May 222011

President Obama addressed the American Israel Public Affairs Committee today. He defended his endorsement of a future Palestine based on Israel’s 1967 boundaries but subject to negotiated land swaps as a public expression of long-standing U.S. policy. He also delved into many other issues. Watch the speech here or read it following the break.

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May 192011

President Barack Obama visited the State Department today to talk about America’s diplomatic efforts in the Middle East and North Africa. Here is video of his remarks, preceded by an introduction by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton:

The transcript of the President’s remarks follows the break.

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Osama bin Laden dead

 Posted by at 22:12  Middle East, Politics
May 012011

The networks are reporting that Osama bin Laden is dead and that the United States is in possession of his body. President Obama is expected to make a statement at any moment now.

Update: It is official. President Barack Obama just announced to the nation and to the world that Osama bin Laden was killed in a CIA operation in Pakistan. Video of the president’s remarks will be added in the morning.

UPDATE: As promised, here is the video of President Obama’s statement. A complete transcript follows the break.

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Mubarak is out

 Posted by at 14:03  Middle East, Politics
Feb 112011

Hosni Mubarak has resigned as president of Egypt and the people are cheering their new military dictatorship. We live in strange times.

UPDATE: President Obama’s remarks on the goings on in Egypt…

The transcript of the President’s remarks follows the break.

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