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  • The President: Ten days ago, the world watched in horror

  • as men, women and children were massacred in Syria

  • in the worst chemical weapons attack of the 21st century.

  • Yesterday the United States presented a powerful case

  • that the Syrian government was responsible

  • for this attack on its own people.

  • Our intelligence shows the Assad regime and its forces

  • preparing to use chemical weapons,

  • launching rockets in the highly populated suburbs of Damascus,

  • and acknowledging

  • that a chemical weapons attack took place.

  • And all of this corroborates

  • what the world can plainly see --

  • hospitals overflowing with victims;

  • terrible images of the dead.

  • All told, well over 1,000 people were murdered.

  • Several hundred of them were children --

  • young girls and boys gassed to death

  • by their own government.

  • This attack is an assault on human dignity.

  • It also presents a serious danger to our national security.

  • It risks making a mockery of the global prohibition

  • on the use of chemical weapons.

  • It endangers our friends and our partners along Syria's borders,

  • including Israel, Jordan, Turkey, Lebanon and Iraq.

  • It could lead to escalating use of chemical weapons,

  • or their proliferation to terrorist groups

  • who would do our people harm.

  • In a world with many dangers, this menace must be confronted.

  • 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.

  • In the coming days, my administration stands ready

  • to provide every member with the information they need

  • to understand what happened in Syria and why it has such

  • profound implications for America's national security.

  • And all of us should be accountable as we move forward,

  • and that can only be accomplished with a vote.

  • I'm confident in the case our government has made

  • without waiting for U.N. inspectors.

  • I'm comfortable going forward without the approval

  • of a United Nations Security Council that, so far,

  • has been completely paralyzed

  • and unwilling to hold Assad accountable.

  • As a consequence, many people have advised

  • against taking this decision to Congress, and undoubtedly,

  • they were impacted by what we saw happen in the United Kingdom

  • this week when the Parliament of our closest ally

  • failed to pass a resolution with a similar goal,

  • even as the Prime Minister supported taking action.

  • Yet, while I believe I have the authority to carry out this

  • military action without specific congressional authorization,

  • I know that the country will be stronger if we take this course,

  • and our actions will be even more effective.

  • We should have this debate, because the issues

  • are too big for business as usual.

  • And this morning, John Boehner, Harry Reid,

  • Nancy Pelosi and Mitch McConnell agreed

  • that this is the right thing to do for our democracy.

  • A country faces few decisions as grave as using military force,

  • even when that force is limited.

  • I respect the views of those who call for caution,

  • particularly as our country emerges from a time of war

  • that I was elected in part to end.

  • But if we really do want to turn away from taking appropriate

  • action in the face of such an unspeakable outrage,

  • then we must acknowledge the costs of doing nothing.

  • Here's my question for every member of Congress and every

  • member of the global community: What message will we send

  • if a dictator can gas hundreds of children to death

  • in plain sight and pay no price?

  • What's the purpose of the international system that we've

  • built if a prohibition on the use of chemical weapons

  • that has been agreed to by the governments of 98 percent

  • of the world's people and approved overwhelmingly

  • by the Congress of the United States is not enforced?

  • Make no mistake -- this has implications

  • beyond chemical warfare.

  • If we won't enforce accountability in the face

  • of this heinous act, what does it say about our resolve

  • to stand up to others who flout fundamental international rules?

  • To governments who would choose to build nuclear arms?

  • To terrorist who would spread biological weapons?

  • To armies who carry out genocide?

  • We cannot raise our children in a world

  • where we will not follow through

  • on the things we say, the accords we sign,

  • the values that define us.

  • So just as I will take this case to Congress,

  • I will also deliver this message to the world.

  • While the U.N. investigation

  • has some time to report on its findings,

  • we will insist that an atrocity committed with chemical weapons

  • is not simply investigated, it must be confronted.

  • I don't expect every nation to agree

  • with the decision we have made.

  • Privately we've heard many expressions of support

  • from our friends.

  • But I will ask those who care

  • about the writ of the international community

  • to stand publicly behind our action.

  • And finally, let me say this to the American people:

  • I know well that we are weary of war.

  • We've ended one war in Iraq.

  • We're ending another in Afghanistan.

  • And the American people have the good sense to know we cannot

  • resolve the underlying conflict in Syria with our military.

  • In that part of the world, there are ancient sectarian

  • differences, and the hopes of the Arab Spring have unleashed

  • forces of change that are going to take many years to resolve.

  • And that's why we're not contemplating putting our troops

  • in the middle of someone else's war.

  • Instead, we'll continue to support the Syrian people

  • through our pressure on the Assad regime,

  • our commitment to the opposition,

  • our care for the displaced, and our pursuit

  • of a political resolution that achieves a government

  • that respects the dignity of its people.

  • But we are the United States of America,

  • and we cannot and must not turn a blind eye

  • to what happened in Damascus.

  • Out of the ashes of world war, we built an international order

  • and enforced the rules that gave it meaning.

  • And we did so because we believe that the rights of individuals

  • to live in peace and dignity depends

  • on the responsibilities of nations.

  • We aren't perfect, but this nation more than any other

  • has been willing to meet those responsibilities.

  • So to all members of Congress of both parties,

  • I ask you to take this vote for our national security.

  • I am looking forward to the debate.

  • And in doing so, I ask you, members of Congress,

  • to consider that some things are more important

  • than partisan differences or the politics of the moment.

  • Ultimately, this is not about who occupies this office

  • at any given time; it's about who we are as a country.

  • I believe that the people's representatives must be invested

  • in what America does abroad, and now is the time

  • to show the world that America keeps our commitments.

  • We do what we say.

  • And we lead with the belief that right makes might --

  • not the other way around.

  • We all know there are no easy options.

  • But I wasn't elected to avoid hard decisions.

  • And neither were the members of the House and the Senate.

  • I've told you what I believe, that our security and our values

  • demand that we cannot turn away from the massacre

  • of countless civilians with chemical weapons.

  • And our democracy is stronger when the President

  • and the people's representatives stand together.

  • I'm ready to act in the face of this outrage.

  • Today I'm asking Congress to send a message to the world

  • that we are ready to move forward together as one nation.

  • Thanks very much.

The President: Ten days ago, the world watched in horror

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歐巴馬總統就敘利亞問題發表講話 (President Obama Speaks on Syria)

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    Zenn 發佈於 2021 年 01 月 14 日
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