President Obama says he will seek Congressional support for military action on Syria.
Obama addressed the nation this afternoon from the Rose Garden as hundreds of protestors gathered outside the White House gates.
Obama said intelligence shows evidence that Syria used chemical weapons to attack it's own citizens, "This attack is an assault on human dignity" Obama said.
"We are prepared to strike whenever we choose." The President said he will meet with members of congress to get their approval to strike selected targets. Adding that he does not want to put boots on the ground.
CBS4 spoke with several locals who have mixed emotions about the issue:
"I think we should probably stay out of it."
"He really needs the support of the elected officials before taking ay sort of military action."
"You know maybe we should because I don't think its right to bomb your own people with chemical weapons - I think that's a little uncalled for."
Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa issued the following statement on Friday:
"I want to know what the goal of the military strike is, how civilian causalities will be avoided, what the strategic plan is, and how we will know if the effort was successful."
In a trip to the Rock Island Arsenal, Illinois senator Mark Kirk says he hopes for a missile strike.
"My hope is to find the military unit that probably was involved and hit their headquarters to cause a direct price for gassing civilians. I think there needs to be consequences."
Dick Durbin had the following to say after President Obama's remarks:
"The President gave a powerful and historic speech this afternoon, challenging Congress and the American people to begin a debate about how to respond to the atrocities in Syria. As we decide what, if anything, we will do as nation to respond, the President has called for a national conversation and for Congress to approve any use of force. That is the right first step."
"What has happened in Syria is a moral outrage. Syrian President Assad has used chemical weapons against his own people, including hundreds of children. The civilized world must now decide how to respond."
"But in my conversations and briefings over the last few days, one thing has been made clear: no US troops will be committed to fight in Syria. We have ended the war in Iraq and are winding down the war in Afghanistan – the longest war in our nation's history. The cost of human lives and treasure to our country over the last 12 years of war has been overwhelming. If we can do something to discourage Assad and others like him from using chemical weapons without engaging in a war and without making a long-term military commitment of the United States, I'm open to that debate."
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