President Barack Obama addressed the nation Sunday night, a rare but necessary move sparked by the growing tensions in the aftermath of the San Bernardino shooting. President Obama vowed in his address to destroy ISIL and related terrorists organizations in a bid to alleviate the public’s fears of a domestic attack.
President Obama opened up his address referencing the San Bernardino attack and the 14 lives lost last Wednesday. As the public continues to process the recent attack coupled with the growing threat of other such occurrences, the president vowed to stamp out ISIL and other related terrorist organizations.
From the speech:
Well, here’s what I want you to know. The threat from terrorism is real, but we will overcome it. We will destroy ISIL and any other organization that tries to harm us. Our success won’t depend on tough talk, or abandoning our values or giving into fear. That’s what groups like ISIL are hoping for. Instead, we will prevail by being strong and smart, resilient and relentless. And by drawing upon every aspect of American power.
Here’s how. First, our military will continue to hunt down terrorist plotters in any country where it is necessary. In Iraq and Syria, air strikes are taking out ISIL leaders, heavy weapons, oil tankers, infrastructure.
And since attacks in Paris, our closest allies, including France, Germany, and the United Kingdom, have ramped up their contributions to our military campaign which will help us accelerate our effort to destroy ISIL.
Second, we will continue to provide training and equipment to tens of thousands of Iraqi and Syrian forces fighting ISIL on the ground so that we take away their safe havens.
In both countries, we’re deploying special operations forces who can accelerate that offensive. We’ve stepped up this effort since the attacks in Paris, and will continue to invest more in approaches that are working on the ground.
Third, we’re working with friends and allies to stop ISIL’s operations, to disrupt plots, cut off their financing, and prevent them from recruiting more fighters.
Since the attacks in Paris, we’ve surged merged intelligence sharing with our European allies. We’re working with Turkey to seal its border with Syria, and we are cooperating with Muslim majority countries, and with our Muslim communities here at home, to counter the vicious ideology that ISIL promotes online.
Fourth, with American leadership, the international community has begun to establish a process and timeline to pursue cease-fires and a political resolution to the Syrian war.
Obama turned his attention to what measures need to be taken to promote safety within American borders as well, including issuing some pointed words to members of Congress to get things done. And while the country has been decidedly weary of war, Obama urged Congress to clear the pathway to use military force against ISIL.
Watch President Obama’s 13-minute address in the clip below.
Photo: WhiteHouse.gov/YouTube/screen cap