While speaking in Stockholm Wednesday, President Obama claimed an attack on Syria is not about his credibility, but the credibility of the entire world, who, he says, set the so-called "red line" on chemical attacks in that country. He also pointed a finger at Congress, saying their credibility is also on the line.
"I didn’t set a red line," he said. "The world set a red line.”
Obama referenced the Chemical Weapons Convention that was signed by over 180 countries and ratified by the U.S. Senate.
“The world set a red line when governments representing 98 percent of the world’s population said the use of chemical weapons are abhorrent and passed a treaty preventing their use even when a country is engaged in war,” he said. “Congress set a red line when it ratified that treaty. Congress set a red line when it indicated that in a piece of legislation titled the Syria Accountability Act that some of the horrendous things that are happening on the ground there need to be answered for.”
He went on to say that the credibility of those countries is on the line.
“My credibility is not on the line. The international community’s credibility is on the line,” he added. “And America and Congress’s credibility is on the line because we give lip service to the notion that these international norms are important.”
But Obama did make the "red line" statement in August 2012.
“We have been very clear to the Assad regime, but also to other players on the ground, that a red line for us is we start seeing a whole bunch of chemical weapons moving around or being utilized,” the president said, according to NBC News. “That would change my calculus. That would change my equation.”
Wednesday's comments drew sharp criticism from many who say the president lied.
"President Obama lied. Syrian kids have died. So is it a Red Line or not?" said a post at the Gateway Pundit.
"Can someone send contact info for The World's spox so I can confirm Obama's red line comments?" asked Lachlan Markay.
"If you've got a Red Line, you didn't draw that. Someone else made that happen," he added in another tweet.
"The world - not Obama - set a red line is now the official White House talking point," tweeted "Eric H."
On Wednesday, a Senate panel voted 10-7 to give Obama authority to strike Syria, The Blaze reported.
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- Did John Kerry use a picture from 2003 to push for war in Syria in 2013?
- Bill Maher: Tea Party would support Obama on Syria if they weren't racist
- Report: Obama to attack Syria even if Congress votes no
- MSNBC's Chris Matthews: GOP calling Obama 'Obama' attempt to 'delegitimize' him
- Obama, Biden go golfing after announcing decision to strike Syria
- Obama: 'I have decided' to strike Syria, seek Congressional approval (Video)
- Sen. Ted Cruz: 'Arrogant' Obama administration pushing Obamacare, war in Syria
- Obama angers many with reference to 'my military'
- Rebels claim latest gas attack was an accident, a result of mishandling the chemical weapons they received from the Saudis
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