Obama Says Pastor’s Plan to Burn Koran is a “Stunt” that Could be a “Recruitment Bonanza for Al Qaeda”

ABC News' Sunlen Miller reports:

President Obama says that Florida Pastor Terry Jones’s proposal to burn copies of the Koran on September 11th is “completely contrary to our values of Americans,” a “destructive act” that could engager US troops.

Noting that the county has been built on religious freedom and religious tolerance, President Obama told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos that the plan amounts to a stunt.

“As commander of chief of the Armed Forces of the United States I just want him to understand that this stunt that he is talking about pulling could greatly endanger our young men and women in uniform who are in Iraq, who are in Afghanistan.”

The president said that it could be a “recruitment bonanza for Al Qaeda,” and hopes that Jones, who says he is motivated by faith, “listens to those better angels,” as he prays about whether to proceed on Saturday with his plan.

“Now, on the other hand, we are a government of laws,” Obama added, “And so, we have to abide by those laws. And my understanding is that he can be cited for public burning. But that's the extent of the laws that we have available to us. You know, part of this country's history is people doing destructive or offensive or harmful things. And yet, we still have to make sure that we're following the laws.”

Read President Obama’s full interview with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos.

-Sunlen Miller

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