President Obama Is Trying To Persuade Congress To Back Strike

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Hundreds of protesters gathered in Times Square Saturday before marching to Union Square, protesting President Barack Obama’s proposed military strike on Syria.

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As 1010 WINS’ Gary Baumgarten reported, one protester said perhaps Obama should listen to the other countries that are opposed to going to war.

PHOTOS: Protest In Times Square Against Syria Strike

“Are all the other countries going to war?” she said. “Are they making that decision?”

Jerry, who is a veteran, asked why there was such a rush to launch a strike.

“Well, let’s find out who did it first, and then also, let’s sit down and discuss this,” he said. “We could take a couple of weeks – we could discuss it, can’t we.”

A representative of the Granny Peace Brigade told CBS 2’s Marlie Hall that she wanted to see a peaceful resolution.

“I don’t want more people, more children, more troops, to die anywhere. I want a different kind of resolution. To try to stop a war before it starts,” Barbara Harris said.

Another man said he is from Syria, and he is opposed to killing more Syrians in the name of saving them.

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Obama is in the midst of a frenetic, high-stakes week of selling a military strike to Congress.

The lobbying campaign culminates Tuesday, the evening before a key vote is expected in the Senate, when Obama will address the nation from the White House to make his case that America’s military must once again raise arms to protect a value he says the world simply cannot afford to place in jeopardy.

“Over 1,400 people were gassed. Over 400 of them were children,” Obama said Friday at the close of a global summit in Russia, his voice seeming to catch as he reflected on the deaths.

“This is not something we’ve fabricated. This is not something that we are using as an excuse for military action,” he continued. “I was elected to end wars, and not start them.”

Obama has refused to say whether he would act without passage of congressional authorization for a strike in response to chemical weapons use.

France has backed a military strike but Secretary of State John Kerry has pushed for more international support.

“We in the United States know and our French partners know that this is not the time to be silent spectators to slaughter,” he said.

Leaders in the European Union called for a strong and clear response on Saturday but wanted to hold off on military action until U.N inspectors released a report about what had happened in Syria.

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