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View Diary: Tammy Duckworth on Syria (295 comments)

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    •  Yes, thank you. (34+ / 0-)

      But I'm wondering frankly what the hell this line means:

      While I support the President's authority to initiate action since he was elected by this nation
      and in light of the divisiveness in Congress today
      , I will have tough questions for the Administration should they intervene prior to Congressional approval.
      While some would like us to believe otherwise, the War Powers Clause of the Constitution (which is law, not a mission statement or a guide) is unambiguous on the power of Congress, and only Congress,  to declare war.

      Is it your contention Representative Duckworth, that this most important provision of the  Constitution, and it's authority in law, is contingent upon the level of divisiveness in Congress?

      •  Please, let's have a congressional debate (9+ / 0-)

        Dawn is breaking everywhere Light a candle, curse the glare We will get by. We will survive.

        by MikeBoyScout on Fri Aug 30, 2013 at 12:33:50 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Obviously many individuals here (24+ / 0-)

        Do not think Tammy Duckworth is stepping into the line of fire with enough bravery.  This is a person who in the terms of war recently left the battlefield.  While serving she was not allowed to question her President.  I wasn't even allowed to call George Bush names in front of my spouse when he was President.  Loyalty to Presidential authority is absolute.

        We have now hired her for a different job, and she isn't a Murtha yet but shows promise.  She has really stepped out of her old box though tapping her President who belongs to her party on the shoulder, she is way out of her old comfort zone.

        My question.....where's everybody else?  You don't think Duckworth is brave enough right now?  Bring on her competition.  Can't wait to greet them.

        •  If it's so obvious, could you please (9+ / 0-)

          provide examples of people in this thread impugning Ms. Duckworth's bravery?

          I see some people seeking clarification as to her position, but absolutely no one questioning her bravery.

        •  Oh garbage. Strawman argument. (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Aspe4, nancyjones, mojo70, NonnyO

          According to you, that would make McCain absolutely right about everything.    Lesson to be learned is never elect or hire a vet because to judge their non-military existence will make one unAmerican.  

          One has nothing to do with the other.   All 534 of them are working for someone and it sure as hell isn't us.  Politicians are the only people in the world who create problems and then campaign against them so the corporations can just keep raking in the bucks.

          Follow the money:   Haliburton, Raytheon, Booz Allen

          I have three politically incorrect, straight, white male, grandchildren; and I don't care if you think they're important or not.

          by dkmich on Fri Aug 30, 2013 at 01:23:01 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I don't feel that way about this statement at all (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Ahianne, highacidity

            Anyone else coming forward in their own voice, going distinctly on the record questioning this action without Congressional approval?

            Why is she all by herself here?

            She is also military affiliated, she can't conceive of a President having to always have Congressional approval for any action.  None of them can, and they represent one aspect of our constant national security argument, and who in their right mind can't grasp that fact and why?

            But here she is stating that she doesn't like our President deciding this is all his call.  And she is alone right now except for maybe it sounds like Grayson.

            She had the guts to show up though, so all frustrated take the boots to her, don't ask where the rest of the Dems and Libs are.  Those who are supposed to be more Liberal than serving soldier Duckworth was ever hoped to be.

            •  one senator from Alaska (0+ / 0-)

              Begich: Congress must be consulted on Syria - Anchorage Daily News

              "If I’m wanting what I don’t have, I’ve got to do what I ain’t done” from the song “First Light. by Grant Dermody 2010

              by RosyFinch on Sun Sep 01, 2013 at 04:49:40 PM PDT

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            •  CT Congressmen Himes, Murphy and Courtney (0+ / 0-)

              are all opposed to action in Syria unless it poses a national threat, and all three have come out publicly to say so.  I attended a public forum this morning hosted by Rep. Courtney, and he flat out said that as Obama's proposal stands now, he absolutely opposes it.  (We were given copies of the proposal, it was APPALLING.)  He's also put out a press release calling for the immediate reconvening of Congress.

              So yes, there are definitely others who are standing with her.

        •  Are you talking to me? (5+ / 0-)

          I didn't say anything about bravery.

          My question, as should be obvious, is about her position on the War Powers Clause.

          And I still haven't gotten an answer.

        •  Regardless (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          delver rootnose, DSPS owl, NonnyO

          Falling into old modes of programming after years of military service is an adequate explanation for not challenging the President....

          ...but it isn't an excuse.

          Because, quite frankly, stepping up for the primacy of Congress's authority is a Congressperson's job.

          ‎"Masculinity is not something given to you, but something you gain. And you gain it by winning small battles with honor." - Norman Mailer
          My Blog
          My wife's woodblock prints

          by maxomai on Fri Aug 30, 2013 at 02:49:58 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  She may still be.. (0+ / 0-)

          ...a member of the reserves but I could be wrong?

          We Glory in war, in the shedding of human blood. What fools we are.

          by delver rootnose on Fri Aug 30, 2013 at 03:27:49 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  And let's support the Duckworth's (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          efforts nonetheless.  If people give support to those that do stick their necks out, then more people would stick their necks out. If you're not going to stick your neck out then at least give moral support to those who do. We all play a part...

      •  I tried 3 times to read that. And gave up. (0+ / 0-)

        The Republicans are defunding, not defending, America.

        by DSPS owl on Fri Aug 30, 2013 at 04:30:18 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  The AUMF has been cited... (7+ / 0-) authorize several Presidential military actions since 9/11.

        Congress members have stood by and done little to revise the broad authority they ceded to the POTUS following their passage of the AUMF. They apparently are beginning to realize that it's "Time to fix the AUMF"

        The Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF), passed immediately after the September 11, 2001 attacks, was a declaration of war against the people who attacked us. It gives the president immense power, including over the lives and liberties of American citizens, and doesn’t create much accountability. Since we now face a terror threat that is fundamentally different from the one we faced on 9/11, we must assess the AUMF’s continuing application and relevance, and whether it’s still necessary to fight terrorism...

        The AUMF grants the president extraordinary power. The last president used it to justify torture and illegal warrantless surveillance of Americans. This one uses it to justify lethal drone strikes all over the world, including at least one aimed at a U.S. citizen. The Supreme Court said in 2004 that the law authorized the President to detain an American citizen as an enemy combatant without any criminal charges. Last month, Pentagon lawyers said the AUMF might allow the U.S. to enter Syria, on the grounds that the extremist al-Nusra Front there is an “associated force” of al-Qaeda....

        Congress members for 12 years have abrogated their responsibilities and powers under the War Powers Clause, by passing a vague, blanket AUMF.  

        As far as action in Syria is concerned, Congress is at least partially at fault for the fact that they aren't being consulted regarding military action in Syria, since they've had years to take back their powers before yet another crisis popped up where the use of US military force might be contemplated by a POTUS--yet they've repeatedly failed to act.

        •  The US Constitution does NOT... (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          84thProblem, devis1, native

          ... give the Legislative branch the authority to transfer its powers to the Executive branch.

          Ergo, the AUMF is now, and always was, UNconstitutional.

          Remember the pressure under which Congress passed that crap?  Dumbya was throwing temper tantrums and hissy fits and pressuring Congress to vote to go to war.

          Neither Afghanistan nor Iraq had attacked the US.  Al Qaeda is now, always was, only a rag-tag little gang of criminals with NO affiliated country.  The perpetrators of the heinous crimes committed on 9/11 were killed with their victims.

          Legally, constitutionally, the US Congress could NOT declare war against a little gang of criminals who represented no one but themselves, who had no ties to any country or any country's military.

          AUMF (albeit unconstitutional) was passed to appease the temper tantrums of Dumbya (whose puppet strings were being pulled by Dickie and the MIC and oil corporations) who 'wanted to go after OBL and the guys who did 9/11' (conveniently ignoring the fact all 19 were already dead).  Then, when the US military did have OBL cornered in Tora Bora, the 'orders came down from on high' to let him go!!!

          Dumbya, in concert with a compliant and stenographic Moronic Media, took that limited AUMF authority and ran amok with it.  He used it to invade Iraq, another illegal and unconstitutional action on the part of the US.

          Obama inherited Dumbya's illegal and unconstitutional "presidential powers."  His actions are every bit as wrong as Dumbya's were before him.  [Re-watch Bruce Fein and John Nichols with Bill Moyers discussing impeachment on 13 July 2007.  The finer points of constitutional law and duties of each branch of government are discussed.  Pay attention to John Nichols' tale of presidential powers put in the metaphorical cherry wood box....]

          It's long past time for the US Congress to set their houses back on a constitutional course, right the ship of state by following our Founding Document.

          I'm sick of attempts to steer this nation from principles evolved in The Age of Reason to hallucinations derived from illiterate herdsmen. ~ Crashing Vor

          by NonnyO on Fri Aug 30, 2013 at 06:47:03 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Have the Supremes declared it unconstitutional? (0+ / 0-)

            Has it even been before them to rule on it?  I don't like the AUMF, but until it has been litigated and overturned, it remains the law of the land (not a good one, and perhaps unconstitutional, but not yet declared so).

      •  That is my concern, too.... (6+ / 0-)

        The US Constitution is absolutely unequivocal on the matter of war powers.  ONLY Congress can declare war.  Period.

        The Founding Fathers made Congress the more important body; that's why Article I deals with the Legislative branch and Article II deals with the Executive branch.  There is a long list of Congressional duties and responsibilities.  Among that list:

        Article I, Section. 8.

        The Congress shall have Power ...

        To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water;

        To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use shall be for a longer Term than two Years;

        To provide and maintain a Navy;

        To make Rules for the Government and Regulation of the land and naval Forces;

        To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions;

        To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the Militia, and for governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress...;

        [That last part is what the first part of the Second Amendment is about.  Remember, we did not have a standing army when our Founding Document was written.  That didn't come until the early 19th century.  I do genealogy research and have multiple colonial New England lines.  One of the documents genealogists look at for their colonial New England ancestors is the ATBA (Able to Bear Arms) lists which have the names of the men in the local militia.  They had to bring their own weapons and ammunition if/when they did any training or if they were involved in any skirmishes (like King Philip's War in which some of my ancestors from two locations were involved).]

        Congress can pass AUMFs until the cows come home..., but AUMFs are UNconstitutional.  Read the whole Constitution: Nowhere does the US Constitution give Congress the authority to transfer any of their constitutional duties and responsibilities to a president.

        The Commander in Chief designation is more of an honorary.  He does not even have to be asked to be CiC, no matter how "important" and puffed up Dumbya got over calling himself the Commander in Chief and erroneously saying we elected him Commander in Chief.  We do NOT "elect" a Commander in Chief; we elect presidents!!!

        Article II, Section. 2.

        The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States, and of the Militia of the several States, when called into the actual Service of the United States;

        NOTE:  That says WHEN CALLED into the actual Service of the United States.  A president does NOT even have to be called into the actual Service of the United States!!!

        "Asking" the president to consult with Congress is a formal courtesy.  Congress can go ahead and just vote up or down on starting an illegal and unconstitutional war in Syria, and they don't need presidential permission to do so.

        The US has NOT been attacked by Syria or whoever the hell the MIC wants the US to drop bombs on without just cause to get us into another illegal and unconstitutional war for which we'd have to borrow money to pursue instead of spending money on our own people our own infrastructure, our own country within our own borders.

        If the US drops bombs on Syria ... or when it drops bombs from drones on Yemen or Pakistan or Afghanistan or wherever else... it is committing war crimes and violating multiple treaties as well as the Constitution.  Congress has not declared a war and dropping bombs anywhere in a military action at the orders of a president is not only unconstitutional, but an illegal and unconstitutional attack/invasion of another country without just cause.  It is the US (under Obama's say so now, albeit Obama continued the Bushista policies and retained all the old warmongering Bushista people to run the various war/military departments) who has been committing all the illegal military actions and committing war crimes all these years.

        Congresses and presidents have made us a much poorer nation - financially, morally, ethically, legally - in the last 13 years by enacting illegal and unconstitutional laws that have taken our rights away from us, and committing war crimes.

        All that needs to stop.

        Rep. Duckworth needs to thoroughly read and understand that it is Congress who makes the laws and it is Congress who has the authority to declare war (or not) - just as our Founding Fathers said in the US Constitution - and since they make laws, even unconstitutional laws, it is Congress who must correct the mistakes of the past which took away the rights and habeas corpus for We The People and enact constitutional legislation that sets us to rights again.  They need to repeal, IN FULL:  AUMF, Patriot Act, MCA '06, FISA fiasco '08, and MCA '09..., and they must NOT approve any kind of bombing of Syria since no one in that country has even tried to drop bombs on us.  Syria is a threat only to itself... no one else.

        The various factions within Syria are fighting each other, and while they're killing each other and doing great harm to themselves and all their various factions, there's not one damned thing we can do to make them stop fighting each other.  So..., difficult as it is, we must do nothing.  When they get tired of pulling triggers, when they kill enough of their own people, then they'll sit down and make peace within their own country.

        I'm sick of attempts to steer this nation from principles evolved in The Age of Reason to hallucinations derived from illiterate herdsmen. ~ Crashing Vor

        by NonnyO on Fri Aug 30, 2013 at 06:24:07 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Disagree with your interpretation (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          I think the phrase "when called into the actual Service of the United States" refers to "the Militia of the several states" and not the President. The President is ALWAYS the Commander in Chief. The state militias are not always under Federal command, unless called.

          There has never been a protracted war from which a country has benefited. The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting. - Sun Tzu

          by OHeyeO on Sat Aug 31, 2013 at 05:52:11 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Have you been in a coma? (0+ / 0-)

        Since 911 & curious george there is a new statute granting the Prez unilateral powers to authorize military strikes ...
        That said, T.Duckworth would appear to be covering her ass
        with this somewhat garbled text...'...none of our allies?'
        What about the French? At least they are not asleep at the switch.

        We screwed up in Iraq, arming Saddam with chem. weapons to use against the Iranians, while arming them as well, no wonder they don't trust us, then he gassed a bunch of Kurds & the world did nothing, so he invaded Kuwait, and we had to kick him out. Then it was decided to get rid of him altogether.

        I say we cut the head off Assad's regime, including Assad,
        get the UN troops in there & secure the chem.weapons, broker a political solution.

        Putin is probably a bigot, and we know he's just a nasty sort of fellow, screw china, & kick the UN in the ass...
        ...they are being duplicitous. & the Brits should refrain from being hypocrites...

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