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Takeaway from President Obama’s Oval Office Speech

Takeaway from President Obama’s Oval Office Speech

Takeaway from President Obama’s Oval Office Speech
December 06
19:59 2015

Harrison Long | Editorial Writer

@HarrisonGLong

The irony of Barack Obama’s third address from the Oval Office arises from the nature upon which he delivered its predecessor. In August of 2010, the President gave his last speech from within his chambers, during which he announced the removal of ground troops operating in Iraq. Despite some speculation prior to, the brief dialogue tonight quickly established itself as a forceful denouncement of terrorism and was a far departure from nearly any other statement given by the president in his seven-year administration.

Going into the speech, there was an unsurprising lack of agreement between the right and left on just what would be discussed in this rare engagement with the public.

The conservative consensus was that President Obama would examine foreign policy surrounding the quagmire in Iraq and Syria, and the next steps in defeating ISIS. The liberal understanding was more to the tune of self-examination, and the need for change within the confines our present gun laws.

What was so shocking in the president’s address was that, despite some rhetoric being tossed about on the need for fresh gun legislation, the right was mostly correct: this was about ISIS.

It came as a major shock to many to hear the harshness of the tone used by the decidedly left-of-center commander-in-chief. Not only did he refer to the shooting in San Bernardino just this past week as “terrorism”, even if “self-radicalized,” but also made the connection with previous mass-shootings in Fort Hood and Chattanooga.

He pressed Congress to decide what steps should be taken to combat the Islamic State going forward but urged the reevaluation of any battle plans that may swallow U.S. forces into a drawn-out, unwinnable theatre of war to the tune of prvious conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan.

While there was a brief moment in-step with the White House’s usual call for action in curbing gun violence following a mass shooting, the overall nature of the address was that of solidarity and unity.
“We cannot turn against one another,” the president urged. “This is not a war of America versus Islam.”

The President made remarks that the United States cannot push the Muslim community away in this time of crisis, as it would play into the desires of the Islamic State to separate its citizens from within. He then went on to say that radicalization was “real problem” that “the Muslim community must confront.”
It can be assured that this was possibly the strongest rhetoric heard by President Obama in the fight against terrorism worldwide since he took office in 2009. It may surprise those on both sides of the isle to have heard such speak from a President who has often been touted by the GOP as “soft” on terrorism.

The President ended his address by reminding all American’s that we are “equal in the eyes of God and that we should never forget what makes us exceptional. We are one nation, and one people. May God bless you, and may God bless the United States of America.”

Featured Image: Courtesy | Wikimedia

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