Obama: U.S. to take limited military action in Syria

Lissandra Villa

President Barack Obama spoke from the White House on Saturday, Aug. 31, to announce officially he has chosen to take limited action in response to a Syrian government chemical weapon attack in Damascus, but he will wait for Congressional approval.

“After careful deliberation, I have decided that the United States should take military action against Syrian regime targets,” Obama said. “This would not be an open-ended intervention. We would not put boots on the ground.”

Obama said U.S. military action would be designed to limit the duration and scope and that the United States’ capacity to execute his plan is not time-sensitive, but it is ready to go at any time.

“I will seek authorization for the use of force from the American people’s representatives in Congress,” Obama said.

Obama said he met earlier Saturday with four Congressional leaders, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, Speaker of the House John Boehner and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, who Obama said agreed to schedule a debate and vote immediately after Congress is back in session.

“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,” Obama said.

Congress will be back in session Monday, Sept. 9.