President Obama said Friday he hasn't made a final decision about military action against Syria, but said any strike would be "limited" and narrow in response to a chemical weapons attack carried out by the Assad regime last week.
Declassified portions of an intelligence assessment released Friday said the U.S. government has "high confidence" the Syrian government carried out the chemical attack using a nerve agent.
"I'm not asking you to take my word for it," Secretary of State John Kerry said, urging people to read the report. "This is what Assad did to his own people."
President Obama said the attack that killed more than 1,400 people was a "challenge to the world" and a threat to national security.
Kerry called Assad a "thug" and a "murderer" who must not be allowed to escape retribution for the attack.
British lawmakers voted Thursday against any involvement in military action against Syria.
"A lot of people think something should be done but nobody wants to do it," Obama said.
Obama stressed that any military action against Syria will not be open-ended and there will be no boots on the ground.
The Associated Press contributed to this report