President Obama pays tribute to Americans killed in Libya (+video)
In his weekly radio address, President Obama paid tribute to the Americans killed in Libya and denounced the violence and anti-U.S. mob protests apparently sparked by an anti-Muslim video.
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Obama attempted to send a message to the protesters on the street.Skip to next paragraph
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"This tragic attack takes place at a time of turmoil and protest in many different countries," he said. "I have made it clear that the United States has a profound respect for people of all faiths. We stand for religious freedom. And we reject the denigration of any religion – including Islam."
But, he added: "Yet there is never any justification for violence. There is no religion that condones the targeting of innocent men and women."
He pledged to bring the attackers to justice.
"We will not waver in their pursuit," he said. "And we will never allow anyone to shake the resolve of the United States of America."
The U.S. has deployed drone surveillance, an FBI investigation team, and a small surge of U.S. intelligence officers to Libya to try to track down al-Qaida sympathizers who may have used protests of the anti-Muslim video to stage the assault on the consulate.
In addition to Stevens, also killed in Benghazi were Sean Smith, an Air Force veteran who worked as an information management specialist for the State Department; Glen A. Doherty, a former Navy SEAL who worked for a private security firm and was protecting the consulate in Benghazi; and Tyrone S. Woods, also a former Navy SEAL who had served protective duty in various U.S. posts.
In the Republican radio address, Rep. Allen West of Florida called on Obama to work with Congress to replace across-the-board spending cuts that West said were a serious threat to national security. West said automatic cuts scheduled to take effect in early January would be "deeply destructive" to the military and to core government responsibilities such as patrolling U.S. borders and air traffic control.
West, who served for 22 years in the Army, said the president has balked at efforts by congressional Republicans to replace the automatic cuts, which were imposed as part of a deficit-cutting deal agreed to by both parties.