‘Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité’: Obama Vows Support to France After Paris Attacks

Barack Obama lauded France's "universal values" and promised counterterrorism assistance.

PARIS, FRANCE - NOVEMBER 13: Police survey the area of Boulevard Baumarchais after an attack in the French capital on November 13, 2015 in Paris, France. At least 18 people were killed in a series of gun attacks across Paris, as well as explosions outside the national stadium where France was hosting Germany. (Photo by Thierry Chesnot/Getty Images)
Police survey the area of Boulevard Baumarchais in the French capital (Photo: Thierry Chesnot for Getty Images)

President Barack Obama called the string of bombings and shootings that erupted across Paris tonight “outrageous” and vowed American moral and military support to France.

Speaking to reporters at the White House, Mr. Obama acknowledged that details on who perpetrated the attacks, which have killed at least 60, remain scant. But he praised the “universal values” of “America’s oldest ally” and contrasted it with that of the terrorists.

“We are reminded in this time of tragedy that the bonds of ‘liberté, égalité, fraternité’ are not only values that the French people care so deeply about, but they are values that we share,” he said. “And those values are going to endure far beyond any act of terrorism or the hateful vision of those who perpetrated the crimes this evening.”

He promised to give any and all aid necessary to French Prime Minister Francois Hollande in dealing with the aftermath and tracking down the attackers. The president drew parallels with the 9/11 attacks.

“This is a heartbreaking situation. And obviously those of us here in the United States know what it’s like,” he said. “And whenever these kinds of attacks happened, we’ve always been able to count on the French people to stand with us. They have been an extraordinary counterterrorism partner, and we intend to be there with them in that same fashion.”

‘Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité’: Obama Vows Support to France After Paris Attacks