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How has the sitting president responded to "the spread of deadly technology"
Obama Jan. '09: the U.S. will Protect the Rule of Law
by Barack Obama
Less than 48 hours after being sworn in on 20-Jan-09, President Obama committed in public, “without exception or equivocation,” to defending the rule of law, abandoning reliance upon torture and off-shore horror chambers. On 16-Nov-08, the president-elect stated on CBS’ , that his administration will “make sure we don’t torture.” That assurance was given as “part and parcel of an effort to regain America’s moral structure in the world.”
Obama Jan. \'09: the U.S. will Protect the Rule of Law

The White House.

This morning [22-Jan-09], I signed three executive orders. First, I can say without exception or equivocation that the United States will not torture.


Second, we will close the Guantánamo Bay detention camp and determine how to deal with those who have been held there.

And, third, we will immediately undertake a comprehensive review to determine how to hold and try terrorism suspects to best protect our nation and the rule of law.

The world needs to understand that America will be unyielding in its defense of its security and relentless in its pursuit of those who would carry out terrorism or threaten the United States. And that’s why, in this twilight struggle, we need a durable framework.

The orders that I signed today should send an unmistakable signal that our actions in defense of liberty will be just as our cause and that we, the people, will uphold our fundamental values as vigilantly as we protect our security. Once again, America’s moral example must be the bedrock and the beacon of our global leadership.

We are confronted by extraordinary, complex and interconnected global challenges: the war on terror, sectarian division, and the spread of deadly technology. We did not ask for the burden that history has asked us to bear, but Americans will bear it. We must bear it.

Progress will not come quickly or easily, nor can we promise to right every single wrong around the world. But we can pledge to use all elements of American power to protect our people and to promote our interests and ideals, starting with principled, focused and sustained American diplomacy.

To carry forward that effort, we are going to be calling on your hard work and perseverance in the months and years to come.


Thank you very much, everybody.


~ Barack Obama