U.S. President Obama speaks to the nation on military intervention in Syria
President Obama made a televised address late Tuesday evening, local time, to explain his decision to respond to Syria's alleged use of chemical weapons with targeted air strikes.
Obama said his administration knows the Bashar al-Assad regime was responsible for the chemical weapons attack and described it as a clear "crime against humanity."
"When dictators commit atrocities, they depend upon the world to look the other way until those horrifying pictures fade from memory, but these things happened. The facts cannot be denied."
Obama added that a failure to act now would threaten the security of the U.S. and its allies and added that the question now is what the U.S. and the international community is prepared to do about the violations.
"If we fail to act, the Assad regime will see no reason to stop using chemical weapons. As the ban against these weapons erodes, other tyrants will have no reason to think twice about acquiring poison gas and using them."
Obama also explained why the military response would be limited and would not result in a another war in the region.
He reiterated that surgical strikes on Syria would send a clear message to deter the Assad regime from using chemical weapons again.
"Let me make something clear: The United States military doesn’t do pinpricks. Even a limited strike will send a message to Assad that no other nation can deliverBut a targeted strike can make Assad -- or any other dictator -- think twice before using chemical weapons."
Obama welcomed the Russian initiative as an alternative to military action and added that he asked Congressional leaders to postpone a vote to authorize the use of force for the diplomatic path.
However, the president did say the military option is on the ready if the deal fails, adding that the Assad regime needs to verify that it will keep its commitments.
Kim Ji-yeon, Arirang News.
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