Quantcast
Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
President Barack Obama and Nobel Peace Prize laureate and Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel stop for a moment of silence in the Hall of Remembrance as they toured the Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, Monday, April 23, 2012. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
Obama targets Iran, Syria with new sanctions
Holocaust Memorial » “National sovereignty is never a license to slaughter your people,” Obama said.
First Published Apr 23 2012 11:16 am • Last Updated Apr 23 2012 07:31 pm

Washington » Surrounded by the haunting memories of the Holocaust, a solemn President Barack Obama on Monday announced a new crackdown on Iran and Syria and said the world must never again allow hatred to take root into the "madness" of mass atrocities.

The president announced new sanctions on people and entities in Iran and Syria that use technology to target citizens and erode their human rights. More broadly, Obama spoke of the work that "will never be done" — the global challenge of preventing atrocities.

Join the Discussion
Post a Comment

To Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel, Obama said: "You show us the way. If you cannot give up, if you can believe, then we can believe."

In his first appearance as president at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, Obama broadly defended his government’s steps to protect innocent people, saying: "We have saved countless lives."

His words came as the United States is under pressure to help rally an international solution in Syria, where President Bashar Assad is accused of running a lethal crackdown on his people.

"National sovereignty is never a license to slaughter your people," Obama said.

The president announced he would be giving a posthumous Presidential Medal of Freedom to Jan Karski, a wartime emissary of the Polish government-in-exile who was among the first people to provide accounts of the Holocaust to the world.

Obama’s new steps aim to counter violations of human abuses through technology. While rebellions in countries like Libya and Egypt have been fueled by cellphones and social media, other regimes have used technology to track dissidents or block Internet access.

For example, Iran has provided the regime of Assad with technology to jam cellphones and block or monitor the social networking sites rebels would use to organize demonstrations.

Obama has also asked the U.S. intelligence community to include assessments of the likelihood of mass killings in its National Intelligence Estimates.


story continues below
story continues below

The White House also announced a set of "challenge" grants for companies that help create new technologies to help warn citizens in countries where mass killings may occur.

Before delivering remarks, Obama spent about 30 minutes touring the museum with Wiesel. The president and Wiesel quietly entered the museum’s Hall of Remembrance, where they lit candles and paused, heads bowed, for a moment of silence.

Obama placed his candle in the hall’s Buchenwald section in memory of the concentration camp his great-uncle helped liberate at the end of World War II.



Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Top Reader Comments Read All Comments Post a Comment
Click here to read all comments   Click here to post a comment


About Reader Comments


Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
Staying Connected
Videos
Jobs
Contests and Promotions
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Access your e-Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.