ST. PETERSBURG — President Barack Obama on Friday acknowledged the American public’s deep reservations about another military engagement in the Middle East but argued that the United States has a moral responsibility to retaliate against Syria’s use of chemical weapons.
Acknowledging that he faces a “heavy lift” in persuading Congress to authorize a military strike in Syria, Obama made a direct appeal to people’s consciences. The president drew parallels to World War II, which the United States was reluctant to enter, and to its efforts helping end genocide in Kosovo in the 1990s, which was unpopular at the time but which Obama said was the right thing to do.
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