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  • Senate and Iraq

    Hello,

    I'm curious if anybody can answer this question. I am curious to what happened to the President asking the Senate to declare the war on any country instead of asking the Senate to pass a resolution.

    Honestly, to me, it sends the wrong message, it's saying that we are debating this issue to death, and we're still unsure as to how should we handle the "Iraq Question." I know that resolution will be probably passed, but what kind of resolution will it be? A full support for US action with or without UN's support, or a mandate to wait for UN to act, then US can act? Or not to support at all? It seems that to me, the Senate is fearing the repeat of Vietnam when it gave LBJ a blank check in handling the Vietnam conflict.

    I'm curious on what the US consititution says about how should a Senate or a President act in the time of war, either attacking or being attacked by an enemy?

    I would rather have Bush stand up and face the Senate to ask for a declaration of war on Iraq. It's the surest way to send a powerful message to Iraq that America isn't about to be f**ked with. It's a clear message, with no room for political correctness.

    I understand that somebody said the department of Justice or something like that states that a terrorist act is not a military act, and shouldn't be treated like one, but if we are sending our military professionals to do the job, then it's a damn clear-out military act, and must be treated like one. No ifs or buts. A clear objective is what we need, and I don't really want to face Iraq with unsure feelings or unclear objectives full of political correctness.

    This act of war by a bunch of terrorists is a very real one, and is against US not UN or anybody else, but America. Therefore, we have the right to act upon as we wish with or without UN's efforts.

    If we can't stomach a war, then how can we realistically expect to continue the war on terrorism effectively?

    Dan
    Major James Holden, Georgia Badgers Militia of Rainbow Regiment, American Civil War

    "Aim small, miss small."

  • #2
    Originally posted by Cheetah772

    Honestly, to me, it sends the wrong message, it's saying that we are debating this issue to death, and we're still unsure as to how should we handle the "Iraq Question." I know that resolution will be probably passed, but what kind of resolution will it be? A full support for US action with or without UN's support, or a mandate to wait for UN to act, then US can act? Or not to support at all? It seems that to me, the Senate is fearing the repeat of Vietnam when it gave LBJ a blank check in handling the Vietnam conflict.
    A Declaration of War would send too strong of a message, and really complicate matters from a diplomatic perspective. Such a declaration is not met to send any message except, "The US military has the Green Light to kick your butt." There can be no "if" or "maybe." The Resolution is a kind of balance. It says the President has approval from Congress "use all means necessary" to effect a positive resolution to the specifc problem, in this case the dangerous Iraqi Regime. it does not commit the nation either way. So President Bush can still negotiate a peaceful resolution to the crisis without having to go back to Congress for a Peace Treaty.

    Declaring War on Iraq is politically unacceptable. We don't need a formal declaration to go to war. If Congress approves the wording of the Resolution, with a clear understanding of what it means, then that's all that matters. Bush ask for a Declaration of War now and he will almost certainly be invading Iraq all alone. We need international support. To get that, the US must convince the world that Saddam is a threat, and that we did everything we could not to resort to violence. More importantly, any nation that joined our crusade would also technically be at war with Iraq. Politically, we can handicap our allies like the British, who are already having a tough time gaining support for this effort as it is.

    The Senate does fear handing Bush that Blank Check for War. they fell for it once and will probably never make the mistake again. (Bush's father sure did sucker them into the Gulf War though. )

    The original draft was streamlined because it basically gave the President the power to go to war against any threat in the Middle East Region. So they've refined it to be more specific. I support this. There must be a clear limit to the scope of any war. And Congress should make clear what they are willing to accept now, and not after soldiers start coming home in body bags.

    Originally posted by Cheetah772

    I'm curious on what the US consititution says about how should a Senate or a President act in the time of war, either attacking or being attacked by an enemy?
    It's been a while since I looked at the Constitution. If I'm not mistaken, Article I, Section 8 states that Congress has the sole power to go to war.

    However, this does not end the debate. The War Power's Act allows the President to wage war for up to 60 days without Congressional Approval. After that, he must go for some kind of approval or waiver. (I'll search for the specs a little later. I promise)

    There is some debate about all this. The Gulf War lasted less than 60 days. And once you are in a war, it is very difficult to just walk away. I know there is argument over deployment authority as well. The original authors of the Constitution never thought about Operations Other than War, or the other military commitments we have today. So the rules are shaky, and open to some interpretation.

    Congress do have additional powers. They can halt funding for a military operation, as was threatened if Clinton continued or escalated the military effort in Somalia.

    Originally posted by Cheetah772

    I would rather have Bush stand up and face the Senate to ask for a declaration of war on Iraq. It's the surest way to send a powerful message to Iraq that America isn't about to be f**ked with. It's a clear message, with no room for political correctness
    The down side to sending such a message is the real risk that Saddam will not hear it. The otherside must not want to f**k in order not to be f**ked with. Saddam has been f**king with us since at least 1990. We kick his butt, but he continues. Saddam understands force. Whether it's diplomatic, or military is really up to him.

    Originally posted by Cheetah772

    I understand that somebody said the department of Justice or something like that states that a terrorist act is not a military act, and shouldn't be treated like one, but if we are sending our military professionals to do the job, then it's a damn clear-out military act, and must be treated like one. No ifs or buts. A clear objective is what we need, and I don't really want to face Iraq with unsure feelings or unclear objectives full of political correctness.
    I believe I said that. The justice department and military (check the military Field manual reguarding combatting terrorism) reguards terrorists attacks as criminal acts, and justly so. Responding to terrorism with military action should be a last resort, when all other means fail. As Tzar suggested, we often want to hit back with force, instead of trying to eliminate the source of the problem. Even I'm guilty of that. However, that doesn't make it right. While I believe that terrorist like those in Al Qaeda can only be addressed violently, we should still seek criminal prosecution allowing our justice system, which is a critical part of the system they try to oppose, to speak for us. So just because terrorists attack us, doesn't mean we can go out a send troops to kill them. We kill terrorists when all other options fail. That means capturing them is too risky. They will not surrender, and leaving the person alive is a grave risk to National Security. Even in Afghanistan, the goal is still to capture Bin Laden and Al Qaeda terrorists. We kill them because they choose to resist.

    However, I do agree that once a military operation is decided upon as a response, it should be carried out as a military operation. So I don't troops to have to knock on terrorists doors, or read them their rights. They surrender, we turn them over. They fight, and the tango get's two to the body and a single to the head.

    Saddam Hussein is a politician who uses terrorism if it suits him. As I stated in another post, Saddam would use Al Qaeda to do his dirty work, then kill Bin Laden. Yet, unlike Bin Laden, Saddam is more rational. He will probably not do anything to threaten his regime. Yet, do anything to protect. Bin Laden just don't give a damn. To be honest, if I faced Bin Laden and Saddam and all I had was one bullet in my gun left, I would shoot Saddam first. He is far more intelligent and deadly. With OBL, at least I know he hates me and will do anything to kill me. Saddam will convince me he is my friend, ask me to marry his daughter. Wait until we have two kids. Then the day before our 20th Anniversary, I would be executed for Treason.

    Originally posted by Cheetah772

    This act of war by a bunch of terrorists is a very real one, and is against US not UN or anybody else, but America. Therefore, we have the right to act upon as we wish with or without UN's efforts.
    That might be true when it came to Al Qaeda. However, I think it would be a mistake to assume deposing Saddam Hussein is to stop terrorism. It is part of our objectives, but not the main reason.

    In part, I believe invading Iraq might be a result of frustration. The Middle East is a big problem, and there is little we can do about it. Peace is hampered by our so called allies, who are likely more involved in terrorism than even Saddam. And because we need the Middle East, we have to take it. Deposing Saddam, in part, might be an attempt (though not a good one) to force a positive change in the only place we are able to. I'm certain the US would rather have a peace agreement between Palestinians and Israel than invading Iraq. However, since that's not gonna happen anytime soon, we are trying to do anything to help better the situation.

    (This is my own opinion. I haven't heard or read anything to promote this ideal. It's just a thought.)

    If we are invading Iraq to because of terrorism, it's a bad move. the last thing we need to do is confirm every tango in the region worst fear that the US is trying to expand it's military power. We run the risk of encouraging terrorists attacks by taking Iraq, not preventing them. We might be removing the WMD threat, but that's a maybe with a question mark forever attached to it.

    Originally posted by Cheetah772

    If we can't stomach a war, then how can we realistically expect to continue the war on terrorism effectively?
    Can't really argue with you there. Any war on terrorism will require somekind of military action. The US must be willing to accept this for a very long time. My greatest fear is that politicians will lapse back into "what this will do to my career," mode instead of protecting the lives of Americans. This effort (I think it's bad to call it a war) against terrorism is an indefinate requirement. The true struggle though will not involve our military. Instead, it will be our nations resolve to continue to fight terrorism long after we are dead. I question Americas commitment. We do tend to have a very short term, and narrow mindset. As difficult as it might seem, it is all too possible for future generations to forget the lessons learned from 9/11.

    We must combat terrorism on a number of fronts. Military action is just one, limited, and small front. The wider, and far more important front is convincing those that would hate us not to by accepting all people, and understanding & respecting, their culture. This is not an "All American World." We must never forget that. We Americans must realize banishing terrorism is impossible. We just do all we can to prevent it. We should always prefer prevention to "responding to." Once the attack has occurred, it's too late for someone.

    Ultimately, the United States must learn what so many already know. Terrorism was here before us, and will likely be here after us. It succeeds only if we as a people allow it to.
    "As soon as men decide that all means are permitted to fight an evil, then their good becomes indistinguishable from the evil that they set out to destroy."-Christopher Dawson - The Judgement of Nations, 1942

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Deltapooh

      More importantly, any nation that joined our crusade would also technically be at war with Iraq.
      Half of the Arab world is doing backflips over that choice of words...
      Editor-in-Chief
      GameSquad.com

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Maddog


        Half of the Arab world is doing backflips over that choice of words...
        Indeed. As you all know, the crusade concept for the Arabs evokes dark historical souvenirs portraying mad Christian crusaders coming in the Middle East to convert the Muslims or simply kill them

        I think Mr. President didn't have any clue or didn't remember about this when he first used this word. I haven't heard him utter that since a while so I guess some of his well-educated advisors explained him a thing or two about Middle East or maybe it was his father: "Son, do you know what a Crusade means for the Arabs?..."

        Coming back to the resolution, I don't think Congress is giving a complete blank check to the President. He still has to report every 90 days during a military intervention and I think Congress can then call an end to the military intervention, if I am not mistaken? Of course, as Deltapooh said, it's no easy feat sometimes to extract yourselves from a war in progress (Vietnam being again a good example) but still, the Congress would have the final word on the end of the war.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Tzar

          Indeed. As you all know, the crusade concept for the Arabs evokes dark historical souvenirs portraying mad Christian crusaders coming in the Middle East to convert the Muslims or simply kill them.
          I agree Maddog and Tzar that it might be a bad word.

          I can't help feeling the Arabs are employing "His Story." I guess we can just forget about the Islamic Crusade occurring between 660 to 750 AD. Had it not been for the Battle of Tours, the Arab culture would be farther west than it was. The Christian Crusades were largely unsuccessful. The fall of the Islamic Empire can be attributed more to internal strife than external influence.
          "As soon as men decide that all means are permitted to fight an evil, then their good becomes indistinguishable from the evil that they set out to destroy."-Christopher Dawson - The Judgement of Nations, 1942

          Comment


          • #6
            Anybody notice.....

            Hello,

            You all made some interesting points....anybody notice the last time we or any nation declared war on another nation? WWII wa the last one. I suppose in the last 50 years, we have become too politically correct to even consider a formal declaration of war on another nation. I don't know if this is good or bad.

            I have always believed in taking a hard line on any issue, trying to be moderate is just inviting more confusion and more bending which will soon muddle the key points or principles of any issue. It doesn't have to be about war, but could be about abortion, homosexual rights, etc.

            Anyway, back to on the subject of Senate and Iraq. I feel that a strong political message is in order simply because we can't afford to take a moderate stand. By passing a resolution, it's a statement that we as Americans are willing to bend to the international opinions and pressures in order to get the worldwide support for our invasion of Iraq. Of course, it doesn't hurt to have some international support, but it shouldn't be of necessity, but rather secondary to our primary national interests.

            I guess we live in the different era now. Back then, the nations didn't need the world's permission to attack each other, and it was more for national interests which mean, of course, conquering any nation. I doubt in future, there will be wars that will redraw the national boundaries.

            I honestly believe such ambiguities can cost a lot of people's lives, and cause uncertain political conditions. Of course, you can equally argue that by taking a hard-line stand, you're just committing equal costs in human lives and political conditions as well.

            I respect this argument, but I strongly feel if we are going to war, then it better be a clear message with clear objectives, the tool of war isn't something to be toyed with. I understand that the arm of the military is simply a political tool to be used at will of certain political leaders. Thus, the military is subject to political conditions and objectives, but for just once in a while, it would be nice if we went to war with no political correctness.

            For example, if we were to cut off Iraqi Army from all avenues of escape, and proceeded on killing everything and all soldiers within this kill zone, is it deemed politically unacceptable simply because it's horrific to die this way? Now, if the Senate finds itself in political danger, and wants to revoke the resolution in the middle of an invasion? With a formal of declaration of war, at least, the Senate is forced to remind itself that we has to go all way throughout, lefting no stones unturned, pursuing our enemies with full strength and weight of our armed forces. Is this even politically acceptable?

            No, of course, it's what makes this conflict so frustrating to me and some people as well.

            Thanks,
            Dan
            Major James Holden, Georgia Badgers Militia of Rainbow Regiment, American Civil War

            "Aim small, miss small."

            Comment


            • #7
              deltapooh!

              oh, man, I just wish you were the president of the US, not that GWB. Things will be much better if just some1 in the administration thinks in your ways. Great visions!
              Attn to ALL my opponents:

              If you sent me your turn and after 24 hours, you still did not get anything from me, please be sure to post in the forum to ask for what is going on.

              Remember, I ALWAYS reply within 24 hours, even if I do NOT have time to play my turn, in which case I will at least send you email to tell you that I will have to play it later, but I DO receive your turn.

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              • #8
                First, sorry for me taking so long to post the links on the Congress issue.

                http://www.law.cornell.edu/constitut....articlei.html

                http://www.cs.indiana.edu/statecraft/warpow.html

                Article I Section 8 clearly states that Congress has sole power to go to war. However, under the War Powers Act, the President of the United States has the right to "make" war. So both sides are right. President Bush could deploy troops, but should have Congressional approval before actually attacking anyone.

                Originally posted by Cheetah772

                Anyway, back to on the subject of Senate and Iraq. I feel that a strong political message is in order simply because we can't afford to take a moderate stand. By passing a resolution, it's a statement that we as Americans are willing to bend to the international opinions and pressures in order to get the worldwide support for our invasion of Iraq. Of course, it doesn't hurt to have some international support, but it shouldn't be of necessity, but rather secondary to our primary national interests.
                Alot depends on the wording of the Resolution. The world is taking Bush's threat seriously. Again, in the world of politics, things are not so easy Cheetah772. Bush declares war on Iraq now, it will be the greatest mistake of his career. What the President needs is a statement from Congress that makes it clear they understand and support the entire spectrum of possible action when addressing Iraq. That can't just mean military action alone, but also diplomatic initiatives. Both require the support of Congress. A Declaration of War means lawmakers have concluded diplomacy will not work and demand action. Bush says we aren't there yet.

                You must remember Bush is putting alot on the line here. Should Congress elect to support the President, it must allow him to exercise his full authority. A Declaration of War handicaps the President politically, allowing only one COA, military action.

                Originally posted by Cheetah772

                I respect this argument, but I strongly feel if we are going to war, then it better be a clear message with clear objectives, the tool of war isn't something to be toyed with. I understand that the arm of the military is simply a political tool to be used at will of certain political leaders. Thus, the military is subject to political conditions and objectives, but for just once in a while, it would be nice if we went to war with no political correctness.
                It is the policy of this nation to reguard any deployment of US personnel as sending the strongest signal possible about our resolve toward a specific goal. This is something we tend to forget. No matter the mission, when ever a US soldier is involved, his or her efforts represent our nation. No paper can equal that.

                Originally posted by Cheetah772

                For example, if we were to cut off Iraqi Army from all avenues of escape, and proceeded on killing everything and all soldiers within this kill zone, is it deemed politically unacceptable simply because it's horrific to die this way? Now, if the Senate finds itself in political danger, and wants to revoke the resolution in the middle of an invasion? With a formal of declaration of war, at least, the Senate is forced to remind itself that we has to go all way throughout, lefting no stones unturned, pursuing our enemies with full strength and weight of our armed forces. Is this even politically acceptable?
                Everything includes non-combatants. That should never be acceptable. However, killing all enemy is. A better example of what you, if I'm correct, is how the Gulf War ended. Then Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Collin Powell, felt that the carnage of that was the "Highway of Death" would negatively sway public opinion. In short, the war came to a halt because we killed an Army in retreat. Retreating is a tactical military maneuver met to preserve your force. The Iraqis had weapons, so should have died. The leaders at the time bought into their own press that a war could be fought in a clean matter. It's a problem that continues to plague the United States.

                Going all the way is more than just the battle to depose Saddam. We will need to help rebuild Iraq's political system to ensure it does not descend into chaos. We don't want to leave a vaccuum that could be filled with someone worse than Saddam. We've made this mistake in the past, and would be wise to heed history's warning.

                I'm not saying you are completely wrong Cheetah772. Your demand is for a firm policy devoid of the political confusion that usually surrounds modern politics. Yet, pursuing such a noble goal can't force the country down a one way street. Ultimately, the President needs the backing of Congress and the ability to use "all means necessary" to achieve the political end state desired.

                In my opinion, Bush is slowly making a clear statement to Iraq. "Give up the WMDs or get your ass kicked." Saddam sees the build-up going on and knows he's running out of time. Bush wants to avoid war, but needs clear support if that is what it takes to achieve the objectives. A Resolution, not a Declaration of War is needed right now. More importantly, you need leaders who are prepared to do what it takes.

                Originally posted by ER_Chaser

                oh, man, I just wish you were the president of the US, not that GWB. Things will be much better if just some1 in the administration thinks in your ways. Great visions!
                Cheetah772 can't be a politician. He's too honest
                "As soon as men decide that all means are permitted to fight an evil, then their good becomes indistinguishable from the evil that they set out to destroy."-Christopher Dawson - The Judgement of Nations, 1942

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Deltapooh



                  Cheetah772 can't be a politician. He's too honest [/B]
                  nah.. deltapooh.. ... you missed my post's title... I meant not for Dan, but ... YOU!
                  Attn to ALL my opponents:

                  If you sent me your turn and after 24 hours, you still did not get anything from me, please be sure to post in the forum to ask for what is going on.

                  Remember, I ALWAYS reply within 24 hours, even if I do NOT have time to play my turn, in which case I will at least send you email to tell you that I will have to play it later, but I DO receive your turn.

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                  • #10
                    Deltapooh....

                    Hello,

                    You said that I was too honest to be a politician? Since when it was a sin to be an honest person?

                    For your information, I'm not exactly a poster boy for Boy Scout.

                    I do believe in the necessity of Machiavellian politics, which is basically a principle of being ruthless with no mercy for anybody in the path of "political" glory.

                    However, I have seen too much cynicism and hyprocisy floating around in the politics in the time of wars or serious crises. Too often the politicians dump off the dirty work to another person instead of taking on the problems with a direct approach.

                    Please don't misunderstood my blunt opinions for naiveity. I'm not a f**king naive person.

                    Granted, I would never become a politician simply because I can easily **** off too many people....which I definitely enjoys a lot, I do literally mean it.

                    My bluntness has always been an asset for me, it's never been a thorn in my side, not ever. I don't have any ambitions to be a competent politician, which suits me just fine.

                    I understand the reality of situation, but sometimes I am tired of cynicism and hypocrisy, which have cost so many fine young people's lives, not always in the time of wars, but in peace, too. The prospects of progress have time and time again been set back simply because of a politician's self-interests.

                    I have come to the final conclusion, there is no honesty left in politics, rather, it has become a business of honesty instead of based on honest principles. If being honest has political benefits, then go ahead for it, but if it has negative benefits, then don't do it. That's the typical way of most politicians we have today.

                    Somebody once said to me, "There's no major issues except one, and only one, it's the issue of winning an election, period." It's a cold reminder to me that the American politics can be easily vicious and ruthless, there's little room for mercy and compassionate.

                    So, please don't take me for a naive person.

                    Thanks,
                    Dan
                    Major James Holden, Georgia Badgers Militia of Rainbow Regiment, American Civil War

                    "Aim small, miss small."

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Since when is honesty being native.

                      What I met by my statement is that you will bluntly inform people of the facts, even if they don't want to hear it. People sometimes don't want to know the cold hard truth, even if it's for their own good.

                      That's another reason why we can't have a Declaration of War. The public appears less willing to commit all the way. That's why you see polls that have casualty caps!

                      I never said you were native, or met it to be offensive. I apologize if you took it that way. It was a compliment. To some degree, every politician comprises their moral values for the greater good, real or not. They make deals with the devil, step on toes, and hurt their opponents in the belief that eventually everyone will thank them.

                      You don't strike me as a man who will sit down and try to convince people the sky is blue when it's really gray just because they want to it to be blue.

                      Me, right now, I'll make a bad President because I have a sharp temper. Secret Service would be constantly restraining me from taking a gun, AF 1, and flying to Iraq to deal with Saddam myself. I'd be on television every night insulting the Sec General of the UN. I'd sweet talk Saddam's daughter into bed then send him the tape. No, I'm far too young to get the gray hairs and hard face of leadership.
                      "As soon as men decide that all means are permitted to fight an evil, then their good becomes indistinguishable from the evil that they set out to destroy."-Christopher Dawson - The Judgement of Nations, 1942

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Deltapooh
                        I'd sweet talk Saddam's daughter into bed then send him the tape.
                        you do that? .... oh.. god, I WANT ya to be the PRESIDENT!
                        Attn to ALL my opponents:

                        If you sent me your turn and after 24 hours, you still did not get anything from me, please be sure to post in the forum to ask for what is going on.

                        Remember, I ALWAYS reply within 24 hours, even if I do NOT have time to play my turn, in which case I will at least send you email to tell you that I will have to play it later, but I DO receive your turn.

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