Obama: Syria Not Iraq, Not Afghanistan

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Sept. 3 (Bloomberg) -- President Barack Obama speaks on his vision for United States military action against Syria for use of chemical weapons just before a meeting with congressional leaders from both parties where he is attempting to gain approval for the strikes.

-- president's remarks as promised.

The fact i have had a chance to speak to many of you and congress as a whole is taking this issue at the soberness and seriousness that it deserves and is greatly appreciated.

I think it indicates the decision for us to present this to congress.

As i said last week, and as secretary kerry made clear in his presentation last week, we have high confidence that syria used chemical weapons in an indiscriminate facshion that killed thousands of people, including 400 children.

That poses a serious national security threat to the united states and to the region.

As a consequence, assad in syria need to be held accountable.

I have made the decision that america should take action.

I also believe that we will be much more effective, we will be stronger, if we take action together.

This gives us an opportunity not only to present the evidence, to all of the leading -- presents the evidence to all of the leading members of congress and form policy committees.

As to why we have confidence that chemical weapons were used -- it gives us an opportunity to discuss why it is so important that he be held to account.

This norm against using chemical weapons that 90% of the world agrees to is there for a reason.

We recognize there are certain weapons that, when used, cannot only end up resulting in grotesque death, but can also end up being transmitted to nonstate actors, can pose a risk to allies and friends, and unless we hold a mental accountin also sends a message that international norms around issues like nuclear proliferation don't mean much.

I am going to be working with congress.

We have set up a draft authorization.

We are going to be asking for hearings and a prompt vote.

I am very appreciative that everybody here has already begun to schedule hearings.

The key point i want to emphasize to the american people , the military plan that has been developed by our joint chiefs and i believe is appropriate is proportional, it is limited, it is not involve boots on the ground, this is not iraq and this is not afghanistan.

This is a limited, proportional step that we are sending a clear message not only to the assad regime but also to other countries that may be interested in testing some of these international norms.

It gives us the ability to degrade assad's capabilities when it comes to chemical weapons.

It also fits into a broader strategy that we have to make sure that we can bring about, over time, the kind of strengthening of the opposition and the nomadic -- and diplomatic and economic pressure required so that ultimately we have a transition that can bring peace and stability not only to syria but to the region.

I want to emphasize once again that what we are envisioning is something limited, proportional, it will degrade assad's capabilities.

At the same time we have a broader strategy to degrade the capabilities of the opposition, ultimately syria to her free itself -- to free itself from the terrible civil wars and death and activity we have been seeing on the ground.

I look forward to listening to the various concerns of the members today.

I am confident those concerns can be addressed.

I think it is appropriate we act to really -- we act liberatory.

I think everybody -- we act deliberately.

To all of you here today, i look forward to an excellent discussion.

Waxed is that undercut any of your authority?

-- does that undercut any of your authority?

I would not be going to congress if i believed that i shaping the authorization, to make sure that we come bush a message and -- we congress the mission, to be more effective.

As long as we are come pushing what needs to be accomplished, sending a message to assad and degrading his chemical -- degrading his capabilities to use chemical weapons them as was the authorization to allow us to do that, i am confident we will be able to come up with something.

This text has been automatically generated. It may not be 100% accurate.


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