At the end of his speech on Syria Tuesday night, President Barack Obama addressed the right and left in turn.
“To my friends on the right, I ask you to reconcile your commitment to America’s military might with a failure to act when a cause is so plainly just,” Obama said. “To my friends on the left, I ask you to reconcile your belief in freedom and dignity for all people with those images on children writhing in pain and going still on a cold hospital floor. For sometimes resolutions and statements on condemnation are simply not enough.”
The apparent purpose of the speech was to rally support for Obama’s plan to launch targeted air strikes in Syria aimed at dissuading dictator Bashar al-Assad from using chemical weapons, and also to announce that this plan was on hold and possibly would not be carried out at all.
Obama wrapped up his remarks with a rhetorical question. “What kind of world will we live in if the United States of America sees a dictator brazenly violate international law with poison gas, and we choose to look the other way?” the president asked.