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← Watch President Obama address the nation on the Islamic State Group

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Showing Revision 1 created 09/10/2014 by Joshua Barajas.

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  5. \f0\fs32 \cf2 \cb3 My fellow Americans \'96
    tonight, I want to speak to you about what
  6. the United States will do with our friends
    and allies to degrade and ultimately destroy
  7. the terrorist group known as ISIL.\'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  8. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  9. \f0\fs32 As Commander-in-Chief, my highest
    priority is the security of the American people.
  10. Over the last several years, we have consistently
    taken the fight to terrorists who threaten
  11. our country. We took out Osama bin Laden and
    much of al Qaeda\'92s leadership in Afghanistan
  12. and Pakistan. We\'92ve targeted al Qaeda\'92s
    affiliate in Yemen, and recently eliminated
  13. the top commander of its affiliate in Somalia.
    We\'92ve done so while bringing more than
  14. 140,000 American troops home from Iraq, and
    drawing down our forces in Afghanistan, where
  15. our combat mission will end later this year.
    Thanks to our military and counterterrorism
  16. professionals, America is safer.\'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  17. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  18. \f0\fs32 Still, we continue to face a terrorist
    threat. We cannot erase every trace of evil
  19. from the world, and small groups of killers
    have the capacity to do great harm. That was
  20. the case before 9/11, and that remains true
    today. That\'92s why we must remain vigilant
  21. as threats emerge. At this moment, the greatest
    threats come from the Middle East and North
  22. Africa, where radical groups exploit grievances
    for their own gain. And one of those groups
  23. is ISIL \'96 which calls itself the \'93Islamic
    State.\'94
  24. \f1\fs30 \
  25. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  26. \f0\fs32 Now let\'92s make two things clear:
    ISIL is not \'93Islamic.\'94 No religion condones
  27. the killing of innocents, and the vast majority
    of ISIL\'92s victims have been Muslim. And
  28. ISIL is certainly not a state. It was formerly
    al Qaeda\'92s affiliate in Iraq, and has taken
  29. advantage of sectarian strife and Syria\'92s
    civil war to gain territory on both sides
  30. of the Iraq-Syrian border. It is recognized
    by no government, nor the people it subjugates.
  31. ISIL is a terrorist organization, pure and
    simple. And it has no vision other than the
  32. slaughter of all who stand in its way.
    \f1\fs30 \
  33. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  34. \f0\fs32 In a region that has known so much
    bloodshed, these terrorists are unique in
  35. their brutality. They execute captured prisoners.
    They kill children. They enslave, rape, and
  36. force women into marriage. They threatened
    a religious minority with genocide. In acts
  37. of barbarism, they took the lives of two American
    journalists \'96 Jim Foley and Steven Sotloff.
  38. \f1\fs30 \
  39. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  40. \f0\fs32 So ISIL poses a threat to the people
    of Iraq and Syria, and the broader Middle
  41. East \'96 including American citizens, personnel
    and facilities. If left unchecked, these terrorists
  42. could pose a growing threat beyond that region
    \'96 including to the United States. While
  43. we have not yet detected specific plotting
    against our homeland, ISIL leaders have threatened
  44. America and our allies. Our intelligence community
    believes that thousands of foreigners \'96
  45. including Europeans and some Americans \'96
    have joined them in Syria and Iraq. Trained
  46. and battle-hardened, these fighters could
    try to return to their home countries and
  47. carry out deadly attacks.
    \f1\fs30 \
  48. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  49. \f0\fs32 I know many Americans are concerned
    about these threats. Tonight, I want you to
  50. know that the United States of America is
    meeting them with strength and resolve. Last
  51. month, I ordered our military to take targeted
    action against ISIL to stop its advances.
  52. Since then, we have conducted more than 150
    successful airstrikes in Iraq. These strikes
  53. have protected American personnel and facilities,
    killed ISIL fighters, destroyed weapons, and
  54. given space for Iraqi and Kurdish forces to
    reclaim key territory. These strikes have
  55. helped save the lives of thousands of innocent
    men, women and children.\'a0
  56. \f1\fs30 \
  57. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  58. \f0\fs32 But this is not our fight alone.
    American power can make a decisive difference,
  59. but we cannot do for Iraqis what they must
    do for themselves, nor can we take the place
  60. of Arab partners in securing their region.
    That\'92s why I\'92ve insisted that additional
  61. U.S. action depended upon Iraqis forming an
    inclusive government, which they have now
  62. done in recent days. So tonight, with a new
    Iraqi government in place, and following consultations
  63. with allies abroad and Congress at home, I
    can announce that America will lead a broad
  64. coalition to roll back this terrorist threat.
    \f1\fs30 \
  65. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  66. \f0\fs32 Our objective is clear: we will degrade,
    and ultimately destroy, ISIL through a comprehensive
  67. and sustained counter-terrorism strategy.
    \f1\fs30 \
  68. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  69. \f0\fs32 First, we will conduct a systematic
    campaign of airstrikes against these terrorists.
  70. Working with the Iraqi government, we will
    expand our efforts beyond protecting our own
  71. people and humanitarian missions, so that
    we\'92re hitting ISIL targets as Iraqi forces
  72. go on offense. Moreover, I have made it clear
    that we will hunt down terrorists who threaten
  73. our country, wherever they are. That means
    I will not hesitate to take action against
  74. ISIL in Syria, as well as Iraq. This is a
    core principle of my presidency: if you threaten
  75. America, you will find no safe haven.\'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  76. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  77. \f0\fs32 Second, we will increase our support
    to forces fighting these terrorists on the
  78. ground. In June, I deployed several hundred
    American service members to Iraq to assess
  79. how we can best support Iraqi Security Forces.
    Now that those teams have completed their
  80. work \'96 and Iraq has formed a government
    \'96 we will send an additional 475 service
  81. members to Iraq. As I have said before, these
    American forces will not have a combat mission
  82. \'96 we will not get dragged into another
    ground war in Iraq. But they are needed to
  83. support Iraqi and Kurdish forces with training,
    intelligence and equipment. We will also support
  84. Iraq\'92s efforts to stand up National Guard
    Units to help Sunni communities secure their
  85. own freedom from ISIL control.
    \f1\fs30 \
  86. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  87. \f0\fs32 Across the border, in Syria, we have
    ramped up our military assistance to the Syrian
  88. opposition. Tonight, I again call on Congress
    to give us additional authorities and resources
  89. to train and equip these fighters. In the
    fight against ISIL, we cannot rely on an Assad
  90. regime that terrorizes its people; a regime
    that will never regain the legitimacy it has
  91. lost. Instead, we must strengthen the opposition
    as the best counterweight to extremists like
  92. ISIL, while pursuing the political solution
    necessary to solve Syria\'92s crisis once
  93. and for all.\'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  94. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  95. \f0\fs32 Third, we will continue to draw on
    our substantial counterterrorism capabilities
  96. to prevent ISIL attacks. Working with our
    partners, we will redouble our efforts to
  97. cut off its funding; improve our intelligence;
    strengthen our defenses; counter its warped
  98. ideology; and stem the flow of foreign fighters
    into \'96 and out of \'96 the Middle East.
  99. And in two weeks, I will chair a meeting of
    the UN Security Council to further mobilize
  100. the international community around this effort.
    \f1\fs30 \
  101. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  102. \f0\fs32 Fourth, we will continue providing
    humanitarian assistance to innocent civilians
  103. who have been displaced by this terrorist
    organization. This includes Sunni and Shia
  104. Muslims who are at grave risk, as well as
    tens of thousands of Christians and other
  105. religious minorities. We cannot allow these
    communities to be driven from their ancient
  106. homelands.\'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  107. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  108. \f0\fs32 This is our strategy. And in each
    of these four parts of our strategy, America
  109. will be joined by a broad coalition of partners.
    Already, allies are flying planes with us
  110. over Iraq; sending arms and assistance to
    Iraqi Security Forces and the Syrian opposition;
  111. sharing intelligence; and providing billions
    of dollars in humanitarian aid. Secretary
  112. Kerry was in Iraq today meeting with the new
    government and supporting their efforts to
  113. promote unity, and in the coming days he will
    travel across the Middle East and Europe to
  114. enlist more partners in this fight, especially
    Arab nations who can help mobilize Sunni communities
  115. in Iraq and Syria to drive these terrorists
    from their lands. This is American leadership
  116. at its best: we stand with people who fight
    for their own freedom; and we rally other
  117. nations on behalf of our common security and
    common humanity.\'a0
  118. \f1\fs30 \
  119. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  120. \f0\fs32 My Administration has also secured
    bipartisan support for this approach here
  121. at home. I have the authority to address the
    threat from ISIL. But I believe we are strongest
  122. as a nation when the President and Congress
    work together. So I welcome congressional
  123. support for this effort in order to show the
    world that Americans are united in confronting
  124. this danger.
    \f1\fs30 \
  125. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  126. \f0\fs32 Now, it will take time to eradicate
    a cancer like ISIL. And any time we take military
  127. action, there are risks involved \'96 especially
    to the servicemen and women who carry out
  128. these missions. But I want the American people
    to understand how this effort will be different
  129. from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. It
    will not involve American combat troops fighting
  130. on foreign soil. This counter-terrorism campaign
    will be waged through a steady, relentless
  131. effort to take out ISIL wherever they exist,
    using our air power and our support for partner
  132. forces on the ground. This strategy of taking
    out terrorists who threaten us, while supporting
  133. partners on the front lines, is one that we
    have successfully pursued in Yemen and Somalia
  134. for years. And it is consistent with the approach
    I outlined earlier this year: to use force
  135. against anyone who threatens America\'92s
    core interests, but to mobilize partners wherever
  136. possible to address broader challenges to
    international order.\'a0
  137. \f1\fs30 \
  138. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  139. \f0\fs32 My fellow Americans, we live in a
    time of great change. Tomorrow marks 13 years
  140. since our country was attacked.\'a0 Next week
    marks 6 years since our economy suffered its
  141. worst setback since the Great Depression.
    Yet despite these shocks; through the pain
  142. we have felt and the grueling work required
    to bounce back \'96 America is better positioned
  143. today to seize the future than any other nation
    on Earth.
  144. \f1\fs30 \
  145. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  146. \f0\fs32 Our technology companies and universities
    are unmatched; our manufacturing and auto
  147. industries are thriving.\'a0 Energy independence
    is closer than it\'92s been in decades.\'a0
  148. For all the work that remains, our businesses
    are in the longest uninterrupted stretch of
  149. job creation in our history.\'a0 Despite all
    the divisions and discord within our democracy,
  150. I see the grit and determination and common
    goodness of the American people every single
  151. day \'96 and that makes me more confident
    than ever about our country\'92s future.
  152. \f1\fs30 \
  153. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  154. \f0\fs32 Abroad, American leadership is the
    one constant in an uncertain world. It is
  155. America that has the capacity and the will
    to mobilize the world against terrorists.
  156. It is America that has rallied the world against
    Russian aggression, and in support of the
  157. Ukrainian peoples\'92 right to determine their
    own destiny. It is America \'96 our scientists,
  158. our doctors, our know-how \'96 that can help
    contain and cure the outbreak of Ebola. It
  159. is America that helped remove and destroy
    Syria\'92s declared chemical weapons so they
  160. cannot pose a threat to the Syrian people
    \'96 or the world \'96 again. And it is America
  161. that is helping Muslim communities around
    the world not just in the fight against terrorism,
  162. but in the fight for opportunity, tolerance,
    and a more hopeful future.
  163. \f1\fs30 \
  164. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  165. \f0\fs32 America, our endless blessings bestow
    an enduring burden. But as Americans, we welcome
  166. our responsibility to lead. From Europe to
    Asia \'96 from the far reaches of Africa to
  167. war-torn capitals of the Middle East \'96
    we stand for freedom, for justice, for dignity.
  168. These are values that have guided our nation
    since its founding.\'a0 Tonight, I ask for
  169. your support in carrying that leadership forward.
    I do so as a Commander-in-Chief who could
  170. not be prouder of our men and women in uniform
    \'96 pilots who bravely fly in the face of
  171. danger above the Middle East, and service-members
    who support our partners on the ground.
  172. \f1\fs30 \
  173. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  174. \f0\fs32 When we helped prevent the massacre
    of civilians trapped on a distant mountain,
  175. here\'92s what one of them said. \'93We owe
    our American friends our lives. Our children
  176. will always remember that there was someone
    who felt our struggle and made a long journey
  177. to protect innocent people.\'94
    \f1\fs30 \
  178. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  179. \f0\fs32 That is the difference we make in
    the world. And our own safety \'96 our own
  180. security \'96 depends upon our willingness
    to do what it takes to defend this nation,
  181. and uphold the values that we stand for \'96
    timeless ideals that will endure long after
  182. those who offer only hate and destruction
    have been vanquished from the Earth.
  183. \f1\fs30 \
  184. \f0\fs32 \'a0
    \f1\fs30 \
  185. \f0\fs32 May God bless our troops, and may
    God bless the United States of America.
  186. \f1\fs30 \
    }