News / USA

Obama: Libya Mission is Succeeding

US President Barack Obama delivers his weekly address, March 26, 2011
US President Barack Obama delivers his weekly address, March 26, 2011

President Barack Obama says the military mission by the United States and its allies to protect civilians and enforce a no-fly zone in Libya is working.  The president plans to speak to the American people late Monday about the operation.

President Obama says that one week into the mission, U.S. and allied forces are successfully protecting civilians from attacks by Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi’s forces.

"We are succeeding in our mission," he said.  "We have taken out Libya’s air defenses.  Gadhafi’s forces are no longer advancing across Libya.  In places like Benghazi, a city of some 700,000 that Gadhafi threatened to show ‘no mercy,’ his forces have been pushed back."

In his weekly address to the nation, Obama said the joint effort is showing results, and Libyan civilians have expressed gratitude.

"Because we acted quickly, a humanitarian catastrophe has been avoided and the lives of countless civilians - innocent men, women and children - have been saved," he said.

The president’s message was intended to reassure Americans about the purpose and effectiveness of the mission in Libya.

A Gallup opinion poll taken Monday shows 47 percent of Americans approve of the operation, while 37 percent disapprove.  Separately, a CBS survey indicates that 50 percent of Americans agree with Obama’s handling of the situation, while 29 percent do not.  Gallup says its approval figure was lower than for other U.S. military campaigns in the past four decades.  

White House officials deny criticism by some lawmakers - both Republicans and members of Obama's own Democratic Party - that the president did not seek congressional authorization or adequately consult with lawmakers before embarking on the military action.

Some critics contend that Obama did not exhaust all diplomatic options before calling out the military.  They also say the U.S. cannot afford the cost of the conflict, and that the nation should not be taking on a mission Libya, when it is already involved in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The White House says urgent and quick action was needed in Libya and the president was well within his constitutional authority to take military action.

The U.S. is transferring leadership of the operation to NATO.  Obama said this is how the international community should work, with more countries assuming the responsibility and cost of the effort.

"Our allies and partners are enforcing the no-fly zone over Libya and the arms embargo at sea," said the president. "Key Arab partners like Qatar and the United Arab Emirates have committed aircraft.  And as agreed this week, responsibility for this operation is being transferred from the United States to our NATO allies and partners."

Obama briefed bipartisan congressional leaders Friday about the situation in Libya and transfer of command and control.  The president will explain the mission to the American people in an address late Monday.

You May Like

Is Air Travel Safe?

Aviation expert says despite tragic losses of Malaysian Airlines flights 370 and 17, industry experienced lowest fatality rate in recorded history last year More

Multimedia 100 Days Later, Nigerian Girls Still Held

Activists holding rallies in Nigeria and several other countries to mark 100th day of captivity for more than 200 schoolgirls being held by Boko Haram More

Chocolate Too Bitter? Swap Sugar for Mushrooms

US food technology company develops fermentation process using mushrooms to reduce bitterness in cocoa beans, believes it will cut sugar content in candy More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Carriers Suspend Travel to Israeli
X
Carolyn Presutti
July 23, 2014 1:21 AM
The United States is prohibiting American carriers from flying to Israel's airport in Tel Aviv for 24 hours, because of rising violence between Israel and Hamas militants. The action was announced on Tuesday, after a rocket fired by Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip landed near the airport. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti tells us, international officials soon may have to determine which combat zones are too dangerous for commercial flights.
Video

Video US Carriers Suspend Travel to Israel

The United States is prohibiting American carriers from flying to Israel's airport in Tel Aviv for 24 hours, because of rising violence between Israel and Hamas militants. The action was announced on Tuesday, after a rocket fired by Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip landed near the airport. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti tells us, international officials soon may have to determine which combat zones are too dangerous for commercial flights.
Video

Video NASA Focuses on Earth-Like Planets

For decades, looking for life elsewhere in the universe meant listening for signals that could be from distant civilizations. But recent breakthroughs in space technology refocused some of that effort toward finding planets that may harbor life, even in its primitive form. VOA’s George Putic reports on a recent panel discussion at NASA’s headquarters, in Washington.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video US Awards Medal of Honor for Heroics in Bloodiest of Afghan Battles

U.S. combat troops are withdrawing from Afghanistan, on pace to leave the country by the end of this year. But on Monday, U.S. President Barack Obama took time to honor a soldier whose actions while under fire in Afghanistan earned him the Medal of Honor. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.
Video

Video Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Age

Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.

AppleAndroid