NEW YORK, N.Y. – In a pre-taped interview for ABC’s The View, President Barack Obama declined to call the lethal attacks on the U.S. Consulate in Libya terrorism despite his administration’s assertion that it was.
Asked by co-host Barbara Walters whether the attack was terrorism, the president responded, "There's no doubt that the kind of weapons that were used, the ongoing assault, that it wasn't just a mob action."
He added that there are "extremist strains" in the Middle Eastern countries adapting to new governments in the wake of their dictators being overthrown. But, he said, "the overwhelming majority of Muslims, they want the same things families here want."
During the interview, which he taped with his wife Michelle at ABC’s studios in New York City, the president also divulged that his toughest moment in office thus far was overseeing, at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware, the dignified transfer of the remains of 30 soldiers killed in a helicopter crash in Afghanistan.
"It's very raw in those moments. It reminds you that freedom's not free," he said.
The interview also had some lighter moments, as when Michelle Obama joked that she is one of the few people who can anger her husband.
"By being thoroughly unreasonable," her husband added, smiling.
And when asked what they would like to do in five years, Mrs. Obama said she would like to take a long vacation, including retracing the honeymoon road trip she and her husband took 20 years ago from San Francisco to Los Angeles along Highway 1.
Her husband said he would think about those plans after the election.
"First things first here. We do have an election ahead," he said.
Of life after the White House, Obama said, "The thing I think I would enjoy the most is spending time, working with kids. Just giving young people the sense of possibility, of opportunity."