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President Obama Addresses Nation on Syria

Aired September 12, 2013 - 04:00:00   ET


CARL AZUZ, CNN ANCHOR: I`m Carl Azuz. And welcome to CNN STUDENT NEWS.

On Tuesday night, President Obama spoke to the American people about Syria. He aimed to give a moral argument for why the U.S. military should get involved, and then explained why he thinks what`s happening in Syria can potentially affect the United States.


BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNTIED STATES OF AMERICA: If we fail to act, the Assad regime will see no reason to stop using chemical weapons. As the ban against these weapons erodes, other tyrants will have no reason to think twice about acquiring poison gas and using them. Over time, our troops would again face the prospect of chemical warfare on the battle field. And it could be easier for terrorist organizations to obtain these weapons and to use them to attack civilians.


AZUZ: The president talked about the idea of a strike against Syria. He also discussed a diplomatic proposal from Russia.


OBAMA: I determined that it is in the national security interests of the United States to respond to the Assad regime`s use of chemical weapons through a targeted military strike.

But this initiative has the potential to remove the threat of chemical weapons without the uses of force, particularly because Russia is one of Assad`s strongest allies. I have therefore asked the leaders of Congress to postpone a vote to authorize the use of force, while we pursue these diplomatic path.


AZUZ: That next step is for U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry to meet with Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov that starts today in Geneva, Switzerland. So, President Obama made his case on Tuesday. Some members of Congress said they weren`t convinced.


SEN. RAND PAUL, (R ) KENTUCKY: What I`m arguing is that what the president has planned is not going to accomplish what he says he`s going to accomplish, which is to punish Assad for this. I think Assad personally will not be held accountable for this. I also think that even if the diplomatic solution occurs, that he still may not be accountable.


AZUZ: Next story today takes us to Libya. One city in the North African nation has been the site of multiple attacks against diplomatic missions and officials. Yesterday, a car bomb exploded outside of a foreign ministry building in Benghazi. Large parts of the buildings out of walls were flown away, but there were no casualties, and only one minor injury was reported.

This happened on the 12th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks in the U.S. In one year to the day after a terrorist attack against the U.S. facility in Benghazi, Libya.

In 2012 the U.S. consulate building there was targeted. This video was shot inside the consulate afterward. Four Americans were killed in that assault, including U.S. ambassador Christopher Stevens, some lawmakers criticized President Obama and his administration for their response to that attack and for not providing enough security before it happened.

Yesterday, we marked anniversary of the 2001 terrorist attack on the United States, and Americans paused to honor the victims of that day.

In New York City, there were moments of silence. Family members read the names of the people who lost their lives on September 11th, 2001. People gathered at the Pentagon to remember lost loved ones. President Obama was there, saying, "Our hearts still ache for the futures snatched away."

And the ceremony in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, is bells tolled for each passenger and crew member on board the plane that crashed there 12 years ago.

In New York, a new building, one World Trade Center, has been gradually climbing back up into the sky. Here`s a look at its progress.


ANNOUNCER: It`s time for the "Shoutout." What do Joan Smalls, Gisele Bundchen and Coco Rocha have in common? If you think you know it, then shout it out.

Are they all authors, dancers, politicians or models? You`ve got three second, go.

Smalls, Bundchen and Rocha are work as fashion models. That`s your answer and that`s your "Shoutout."


AZUZ: In an industry that`s focused on looks, Shaun Ross stands out, he`s not as famous as the models we mentioned in that Shoutout." But Ross is making a name for himself and hoping to make a difference for others. On his Twitter page, Shaun`s description simply says, I want to inspire you. He explains why and how in this report.


SHAUN ROSS: You know, I was always a person I was made fun of. But yet again, I don`t want your sympathy. All kids got made fun of sometime in your life, you know, for being too short, being fat, being skinny, having buck teeth, having crooked teeth, you know. All kinds of things. So, I don`t want that to be the reason where (inaudible) you know, let`s look at this (inaudible) from sympathy.

My name is Shaun Ross. And I`m considered technically a professional model and I think that I broke the mold for a lot of people, and I fight there are a lot of mold breakers.

Like I don`t think I even knew what albinism was until like maybe the sixth grade, seventh grade. I never really questioned it. You know, I just feel like, you know, I`ve always been the one who wanted to like stand out. You know, it`s like if I stand out already, why not stand out ultimately?

So, when everybody thinks fashion week, you know, they think of like this, like, super crazy paparazzi fashion, couture, gowns, everything. It`s kind of weird, It`s kind of weird, it`s really like sometimes is an allusion.

The concept of perfection, it depends on, you know, what angle you`re coming from. I was just a person that, you know, I felt that I could have got tattoos, could have got piercings, could have died my hair. I mean I`ve been asked by a lot of different people to dye my hair. I`ve never done it. Because it`s like, why should I change my appearance for you? You know, you`re not changing your standards for me, so why should I change my standards for you? You know, this has just been something I`ve seen my whole entire life in this career, what is perfect.

It`s just weird. I see these kids, and they`re just beyond talented. And I just, you know, I just really want to be a voice for kids. I really want to tell this little girl that, you know, you are not ugly because you have vitiligo or this -- a little girl who is literally half paralyzed, (inaudible) wheelchair, but she doesn`t care, and she just wants to show the world, you know, how beautiful she is because she is extremely beautiful, and that`s my whole message.

You can do whatever, it doesn`t matter what is -- you can just do it ever. And you can go after, and you can accomplish it, and you can achieve it.


AZUZ: One is by land, two by see. The "Roll Call" is coming, the "Roll Call" is coming. Starts with Revere High School. That`s why we did that. Home of the Mini (ph) from Richfiel, Ohio. For most of us today, it`s Thursday, but for the Sunder at Discovery Canyon Campus in Colorado Springs, Colorado it`s Thursday, Happy Thursday, yo. And Charlie the Cougar (ph) closes out today`s "Roll Call." That`s the mascot at Helen Cox High in Harvey, Louisiana.

Wilson, Newton, RG3, NFL has some impressive mobile quarterbacks. But keep an eye out for the (inaudible) player in this YouTube video, because after taking the snap, he takes off. Boom, just nocks over that guy, outruns a bunch more. He`s not done. Jupes, the guy out by the sideline, and stiff arm for good measure. After all that, he deserves a clear path to the end zone. He may be small, but it looks like he`s head and shoulder pads above the competition. All right, time for us to take a hike, for CNN STUDENT NEWS, I`m Carl Azuz, we`ll see you tomorrow.