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The President's address

Tonight a relatively new genre in the "Presidential Address" continues—as the President shuns the traditional Oval Office backdrop normally associated with "an address to the nation" for a live, remote location—in this case, nearby Ft. McNair, one of our oldest military facilities.  While it’s been done before—President Bush on the carrier deck, President Obama at West Point—more often than not it’s been backdrops designed to hammer home a military theme, and it’s still a relatively new dynamic. Some of the analysts are saying the White House is keen to avoid the Oval Office setting tonight because it would feel too much like we're involved in a "war" in Libya, which is a valid question for the President to address: What is this, exactly? Especially when you consider the men and women with U.S. forces in the region who are keeping up these air missions at a vigorous tempo, many of them in the midst of multiple deployments, encompassing what the military calls our two other A.O.'s (Areas of Operations), Iraq and Afghanistan. The President will have his chance to explain U.S. and coalition actions in Libya with tonight's speech, and tomorrow afternoon in New York I'll sit down with him to ask a few other questions. We hope you can join us for all of it.