HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Main » General Discussion (Forum) » The White House Walk-And-...

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 06:15 PM

 

The White House Walk-And-Talk That Changed Obama's Mind On Syria - MSNBC

The White House Walk-And-Talk That Changed Obama's Mind On Syria
By Chuck Todd, NBC News Chief White House Correspondent
8/31/13

<snip>

A stroll around the White House grounds with his top adviser on Friday evening changed President Barack Obama’s mind about getting Congress to sign off on a military strike in Syria, senior White House officials told NBC News.

Obama had been leaning toward attacking Syria without a congressional vote for the past week, the officials said. Obama was convinced he had the evidence to back up a strike and as a result dispatched Secretary of State John Kerry to make a passionate case for U.S. action. But only hours after Kerry called Syrian President Bashar al-Assad "a thug and a murderer" and accused his regime of using chemical weapons to kill 1,429 people, Obama changed his mind as he walked across the South Lawn with Chief of Staff Denis McDonough, the officials said.

Returning from that walk, the president called his advisers in the early evening to inform them of his new decision. The plan was immediately met with robust resistance from a whiplashed Obama team who had listened to Kerry lay out the administration's strongest case yet for action against Assad. "My friends, it matters here if nothing is done," Kerry had argued. "It matters if the world speaks out in condemnation and then nothing happens."

Obama's National Security Council had believed since last weekend that requiring a vote was not even on the table and that “consultation” in the form of congressional briefings and behind-the-scenes conversation was all that would be needed before a strike. One senior official noted that no key leaders in Congress had specifically requested a vote on military intervention.

Officials said that after the president met with national security advisers on Aug. 24, they determined the evidence showed Syria’s Assad regime had used chemical weapons in an attack earlier this month. At that time, the president indicated he was leaning toward a strike.
But a growing number of Congressional members were beginning to question the administration’s strategy by the end of the week. And an NBC News poll released Friday morning showed that nearly 80 percent of Americans agreed that the president should seek approval in advance of taking military action.

Officials said Obama also was influenced by Thursday’s lively debate in the House of Commons, where Prime Minister David Cameron lost a vote in Parliament to authorize participation in an allied strike against Syria. Cameron had been a staunch advocate of military action but was chastened in the wake of the vote. “It is clear to me that the British Parliament, reflecting the views of the British people, does not want to see British military action,” Cameron said. “I get that, and the government will act accordingly.”

While Obama's advisers argued Friday night in private...

<snip>

More: http://firstread.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/08/31/20273128-the-white-house-walk-and-talk-that-changed-obamas-mind-on-syria?lite

49 replies, 4657 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 49 replies Author Time Post
Reply The White House Walk-And-Talk That Changed Obama's Mind On Syria - MSNBC (Original post)
WillyT Aug 2013 OP
JimDandy Aug 2013 #1
Hydra Aug 2013 #2
geek tragedy Aug 2013 #3
Benton D Struckcheon Aug 2013 #4
gopiscrap Aug 2013 #8
dixiegrrrrl Aug 2013 #33
indepat Aug 2013 #5
leftstreet Aug 2013 #6
PADemD Aug 2013 #9
gopiscrap Aug 2013 #10
indepat Aug 2013 #12
gopiscrap Aug 2013 #13
DearAbby Aug 2013 #23
gopiscrap Aug 2013 #24
Ghost Dog Aug 2013 #22
Skittles Aug 2013 #35
JohnnyLib2 Aug 2013 #7
bahrbearian Aug 2013 #21
MH1 Aug 2013 #26
karynnj Aug 2013 #36
Blue_Tires Aug 2013 #11
proverbialwisdom Aug 2013 #19
iamthebandfanman Aug 2013 #29
proverbialwisdom Aug 2013 #32
bahrbearian Aug 2013 #14
WillyT Aug 2013 #15
bahrbearian Aug 2013 #17
MNBrewer Aug 2013 #18
bahrbearian Aug 2013 #20
Rebl Aug 2013 #25
jakeXT Sep 2013 #47
TwilightGardener Aug 2013 #16
libdem4life Aug 2013 #27
karynnj Aug 2013 #37
libdem4life Aug 2013 #38
karynnj Aug 2013 #40
libdem4life Aug 2013 #44
Faryn Balyncd Aug 2013 #28
dflprincess Aug 2013 #30
polichick Aug 2013 #31
proverbialwisdom Aug 2013 #34
libdem4life Aug 2013 #39
senseandsensibility Aug 2013 #42
libdem4life Aug 2013 #43
senseandsensibility Aug 2013 #46
Hulk Aug 2013 #41
Spitfire of ATJ Aug 2013 #45
Jasana Sep 2013 #48
Little Star Sep 2013 #49

Response to WillyT (Original post)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 06:21 PM

1. K n R for an interesting fact to add to the historical record.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to WillyT (Original post)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 06:25 PM

2. Make the noise- sometimes the people up top DO hear it! n/t

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to WillyT (Original post)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 06:29 PM

3. This:

 

While Obama's advisers argued Friday night in private that the humiliating defeat for Cameron starkly illustrated the risks of asking for congressional input, the president responded that the vote in Parliament demonstrated exactly why he should seek a vote on this side of the Atlantic, senior officials told NBC News.
And, the president insisted, seeking legislative backing was the approach most consistent with his philosophy. While debate within the administration continued into late Friday, by Saturday morning the senior advisers acquiesced.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to WillyT (Original post)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 06:29 PM

4. Now that this is done,

I also strongly believe nothing should happen until they get back when they were supposed to: on Sept 9. Calls to come back earlier than that should be resisted. Let everyone have some time to consider and get every last bit of info they need. Give the windbags (Graham/McCain and whoever follows those two) time to bloviate to their hearts and mouths' content. Give the people time to write/call their Reps.
This might finally be the time we get to reverse 60 years of imperial Presidential rule, and get back to making sure any act of war has to be approved by Congress. Regardless of how this turns out, the important thing - to me, anyway - is to get back to a point where whoever's the President doesn't feel like he can just lob missiles at whoever he feels like whenever he feels like.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Benton D Struckcheon (Reply #4)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 06:42 PM

8. God I hope so

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Benton D Struckcheon (Reply #4)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 08:34 PM

33. This just in:

Senate Foreign Relations Chairman Menendez: Committee will take up Syria authorization measure Tuesday; use of force justified -

Breaking News just now.

Sounds like the Committee Chairman at least has made up his mind.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to WillyT (Original post)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 06:29 PM

5. If only TPTB were as passionate about punishing war criminals and banksters as they were about

punishing Assad, the country, if not the world, would be a better place. To say someone must be punished for doing evil rings hollow when so many homegrown evildoers remain unpunished. Maybe just a tad disingenuous? Besides, military action would likely kill and maim skedaddles of innocent women, children, the elderly, and the infirmed, a crime of some magnitude if Nuremberg taught the world anything.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to indepat (Reply #5)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 06:31 PM

6. +1

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to indepat (Reply #5)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 06:42 PM

9. +1000

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to indepat (Reply #5)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 06:43 PM

10. Yes but the war criminals and banksters are the

same ones who fill the politicians campaigns coffers so we know that won't happen.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to gopiscrap (Reply #10)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 06:52 PM

12. And wonder if any of the war criminals or banksters will profit by yet another war?

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to indepat (Reply #12)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 06:53 PM

13. of course they do

Last edited Sat Aug 31, 2013, 07:29 PM - Edit history (1)

that's why you're going to hear a non stop drum beat for war.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to gopiscrap (Reply #13)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 07:28 PM

23. And this argument should be heard

within the halls of congress. How many wars in the 20th century were over lies, up to the war in Iraq. We can not claim the moral high ground as we ourselves harbor war criminals.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to DearAbby (Reply #23)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 07:29 PM

24. Yup I agree with you!

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to indepat (Reply #5)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 07:27 PM

22. There is international law

also that Americans really ought to take more seriously into account, no?

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to indepat (Reply #5)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 08:43 PM

35. they're not gonna bite the hands that feed them

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to WillyT (Original post)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 06:35 PM

7. Wow. Where has he left Kerry?

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to JohnnyLib2 (Reply #7)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 07:27 PM

21. Next to Howard Dean, all used up. Now let's appoint some repugs to the Cabinet.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to JohnnyLib2 (Reply #7)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 07:35 PM

26. Meh. Moving on to the next thing.

Kerry was sent out to make a case, and he did, but it always was up to Congress to authorize any action. (Ok, always should have been up to Congress).

Kerry will be fine. I'd say a more apt question is where does it leave the world?

(and no, I don't believe that any unilateral or mostly unilateral action on the part of the US would be a good idea. Unless we can miraculously sneak a SEAL team in there to sprinkle fairy dust on the chemical weapons and make them harmless).

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to JohnnyLib2 (Reply #7)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 08:43 PM

36. Kerry will be on all 5 talks shows tomorrow - for Obama

Obviously, Obama was impressed with his speeches on Syria representing the administration position. Had Obama been unhappy with the first, there were others he could have asked to do the more recent one.

Kerry's speech is STILL the basis for Obama's resolution that they want Congress to pass - and by all accounts, Kerry was very audible in interacting with Congress people on the phone call Thursday.

In addition, remember - Kerry was one of the people who sought a resolution on Libya - where Obama himself did not think one was needed. A spokesperson said that he had no problems with going to Congress - and I would expect that he will likely be the witness for several committees.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to WillyT (Original post)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 06:47 PM

11. It's funny to watch msnbc and count how many times

The pundits mention "weakness" per minute of spoken word...that's how i know the president is doing the right thing

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Blue_Tires (Reply #11)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 07:20 PM

19. +1

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Blue_Tires (Reply #11)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 08:02 PM

29. its true unfortunately

no matter how much you dislike a news agency or what it reports :p

that is how some parts of the world will view it. that's just reality.

whats it matter tho ?

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to iamthebandfanman (Reply #29)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 08:27 PM

32. Bull.

http://www.businessinsider.com/justin-amash-military-no-syria-2013-8

GOP CONGRESSMAN: Military Members Keep Telling Me To Vote No On Syria
PAUL SZOLDRA AUG. 31, 2013, 7:29 PM

https://twitter.com/repjustinamash/status/373932995457318912

Since Amash's initial tweet, he's been retweeting comments that have been sent in from military members and veterans. Many of my own military sources have expressed reservations with action in Syria, especially following service in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.

Here's a sampling:

<>

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to WillyT (Original post)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 06:55 PM

14. Chuck Todd is not a reputable reporter neither is NBC a reputable New's Source

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to bahrbearian (Reply #14)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 07:10 PM

15. I Hear Ya... But... Sometimes A Story Is Offered And One Wants Others To Give Their Analysis...

 

Not promoting the story, as much as I'm asking, "What do you guys think about this?"




Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to WillyT (Reply #15)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 07:18 PM

17. I think the Host should have the Option to lock NBC and NY Times Threads, they are not reliable.

That's how we got to this War Footing.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to bahrbearian (Reply #14)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 07:19 PM

18. NBC is a war profiteer.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to MNBrewer (Reply #18)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 07:21 PM

20. Thats Parent company dosen't pay any taxes for war.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to bahrbearian (Reply #14)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 07:30 PM

25. Can't stand

Todd or Gregory. Todd needs to drag his sorry ass over to faux news where he belongs and take Gregory with him.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to bahrbearian (Reply #14)

Sun Sep 1, 2013, 04:52 AM

47. Reuters:Obama's Syria decision: a walk, a debate, and a new approach

...

The decision surprised his own advisers, who had not proposed voluntarily seeking lawmaker approval and had concluded Obama had the legal authority to take action on his own. But Obama felt it would be more consistent with his desire, stated earlier this year, to take America off of a "perpetual wartime footing" by getting the backing of Congress and the citizens it represents.

After his walk with McDonough, the president called National Security Adviser Susan Rice, her deputy Tony Blinken, senior adviser Dan Pfeiffer, and others into the Oval Office to announce his approach.

They had a vigorous debate that lasted two hours, senior administration officials said. The biggest risk to Obama's new plan: Congress, like the British parliament, would vote no. That would cast serious doubts on Obama's ability to lead in the Middle East where he is already under fire for what critics call a muddled response to the Egyptian military coup.

The benefits outweighed that risk for Obama, who believed lawmakers would be compelled to vote for a measure that would protect U.S. allies Israel and Jordan.

...

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/09/01/us-syria-crisis-obama-decision-idUSBRE98001520130901

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to WillyT (Original post)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 07:15 PM

16. I would like to know exactly which of his advisors told him to go forward without Congress.

Because they were steering him wrong.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to WillyT (Original post)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 07:37 PM

27. Stunning that the American President is held in check, ultimately, by UK commoners.

 

If you're Kerry, that's got to smart and says even more about the bobbleheads in the US Congress. The quotes "lively debate" and "reflecting the views of the British people" are hopefully instructive, for the American Congress in the future. Not, however, holding my breath.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to libdem4life (Reply #27)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 08:48 PM

37. Kerry "has no problems" with going to Congress

It was (and is) the Obama position that he does not need approval - something he said as he asked for the vote.

Kerry was a Senator for 28 years.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to karynnj (Reply #37)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 08:52 PM

38. Going to Congress is different from making an international statement...it doesn't cut both ways,

 

they can't have it both ways. He was rebuffed on an international basis...as he should have been.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to libdem4life (Reply #38)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 09:04 PM

40. It was a foregone conclusion that the UN would not back it

China and Russia were NEVER going to vote for it.

Actually the Russians claiming there was NO chemical attack -- and if there were it was the rebels. They are the ones that likely lose some credibility.

I think the international reaction is not a rejection of Kerry's laying out the US case that Assad used chemical weapons. It IS a rejection of his view that the world needs to react to that.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to karynnj (Reply #40)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 09:27 PM

44. That seems true and is even more depressing.

 

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to WillyT (Original post)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 07:43 PM

28. Friday night!













Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to WillyT (Original post)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 08:20 PM

30. While the British Parliament may reflect the views of the British people

Obama doesn't really have to worry that Congress will reflect anything but the views of the MIC. But now he can look like he's going through the motions.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to dflprincess (Reply #30)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 08:21 PM

31. That's the truth - nobody represents the people in the U.S.A.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to WillyT (Original post)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 08:42 PM

34. Associated photo.

http://firstread.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/08/31/20273128-the-white-house-walk-and-talk-that-changed-obamas-mind-on-syria?lite

[img][/img]
White House
President Barack Obama meets with his national security advisers in the White House Situation Room on Saturday to discuss strategy in Syria.
Chief of Staff Denis McDonough is fourth from right.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to proverbialwisdom (Reply #34)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 08:57 PM

39. They all have on white shirts. One woman and one person of color. Out of 12...Just an observation

 

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to libdem4life (Reply #39)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 09:05 PM

42. Well, there's two people of color actually.

Not that I'm okay with any of this.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to senseandsensibility (Reply #42)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 09:24 PM

43. Was that counting our President? I was just looking down the table and it seemed only Holder

 

qualified. Even only two is appalling, however.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to senseandsensibility (Reply #42)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 10:16 PM

46. Yeah I was counting the President.

I can see the back of his head and he is the most powerful one in the group. But you're right. Two is not enough, and the number of women is appalling.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to WillyT (Original post)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 09:05 PM

41. In TOTAL agreement.

Last edited Sat Aug 31, 2013, 11:15 PM - Edit history (1)

I get so tired of reading posts from "the bandwagon choir" on these threads. I guess some folks just have a hard time accepting that President Obama can be a mortal human being.
I'm glad he is going to throw this out there to Congress. I'm damn glad in fact.
First of all, it's a "no win situation". Damned if he does something, damned if he doesn't. Personally, I don't want him to do anything. But even his own party are divided, and some are even trashing him...if he does or doesn't; but the reich wingers' heads are exploding over this. "He's a coward, he's weak, he's indecisive", etc.
Smart move. Let THEM debate it. Let them expose how they want to deal with it. Then THEY can be accountable and on record.
It buys more time before he does something we'll ALL regret.
Abbas is on notice. France may do the "dumb thing" first. Maybe not; but it gives all the bitchers and belly-achers a chance to blow their steam. They are going to condemn Obama no matter what he does.
Is gassing 1,429 people so much worse than blowing them up, or shooting them to death? Worse than dropping incindiary bombs on them?
Hell, we dropped atomic bombs on major cities FULL of civilians. We dropped napalm on villages with civilians. I see little difference. It's ALL horrific.
The bottom line is, he hasn't done anything but "warn" yet. We have pulled out of one war. We're pulling out of the other; and we haven't started a new one ...yet. If Willard had won, we'd still be in Iraq, and we most possibly have a war with Iran by now, and boots on the ground in Egypt, Lybia and now, Syria.
Oh yea of so little faith. With supporters like you, who needs enemies?

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to WillyT (Original post)

Sat Aug 31, 2013, 09:32 PM

45. "an allied strike against Syria"

 

As in "allies" from WWII?
"Allies" against the "Middle East" from 9/11?
The Ferengi Alliance?


Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to WillyT (Original post)

Sun Sep 1, 2013, 05:25 AM

48. Now if he asks us and the people can get the Congress to say HELL NO...

as they should, will he listen? I surely hope so. Can we get Congress to listen to us? That's a million dollar question.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to WillyT (Original post)

Sun Sep 1, 2013, 10:47 AM

49. k&r

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Reply to this thread