For John, BLUF: The Fox Panel notwithstanding, not a bad speech. Nothing to see here; just move along.
The President's talk to the American People this evening, just after 2000.
At war with Terrorism, as the President asserts? This is the one slip in this 13 minute talk from the Oval Office. Terrorism is a tactic. We need to better define the enemy than a tactic he uses. The tactic is not a "center of gravity". Here is a 35 page monograph on the topic.
We will prevail by being strong and smart.
"First, our military will continue to hunt down terrorist plotters", anywhere.
Second, we will continue to provide support for friendly (non-US) forces on the ground.
Third, we are working to cut off ISIL, sharing intelligence and cooperating with Muslim communities here and overseas.
Fourth, with American leadership, we are trying to end the war in Syria, so we can all focus on ISIL. (This hints at the idea that we may cut a deal with Russia that preserves Syrian President Assad.)
We continuously review our processes to see if we need to adapt.
Here at home we need to work together to solve problems.
Congress should pass a law that says those on no fly lists should not be able to purchase firearms.
We need to curtail the sale of high powered rifles.
We need to take a harder look at those coming to the US without Visas.
Congress should vote for a renewal of the Authorization for Use of Military Force.
We should NOT be drawn into a long ground war in Iraq or Syria.
We can not turn against each other by defining this as a war between America and Islam. The vast majority of terror victims are Muslim.
An extremist ideology has spread within some Muslim communities and Muslims must speak out against this. (This is an important step, in acknowledging that there is a problem within Islam, an extremist ideology spreading.)
We will prevail because we are on the right side of history.
There was talk about gun control, but no discussion of curtailing the sale of pipes in places like Home Depot and Lowes. That said, the President did acknowledge that the couple in the San Bernardino event did have a collection of pipe bombs.
Regards — Cliff