Obama: Progress Made in Iraq

“We continue to make progress” in Iraq, President Obama said in a speech to the nation Thursday, but “the situation remains dire for Iraqis subject to ISIS terror.” He promised humanitarian aid wherever possible and said the U.S. “will continue airstrikes” to protect U.S. assets. He also urged Iraqis to form a new, inclusive government under Prime Minister-designate Haider al-Abadi. Shifting gears, the president addressed the crisis in Ferguson, Missouri, declaring, “Many Americans have been deeply disturbed” about the killing of unarmed black teenager Michael Brown by a Ferguson cop. Obama said he received an update from Attorney General Eric Holder, and has tasked the Department of Justice and FBI with investigating the case. The president spoke about Brown, saying, “his family will never hold him in their arms again,” and urged the police to be open and transparent about their investigation of the death. At the same time, Obama decried both protester violence against police, and the use of excessive force by police against protesters and journalists.