Thursday, October 10, 2002
The game is over, war is won
The days of Iraq acting as an outlaw state are coming to an end.
In 1991, by the time the president's father sought Congressional support to use force against Iraq, he had secured pledges of military cooperation from nearly 40 nations and statements of support from scores of others. He had already secured the backing of the United Nations, and he had already developed a clear plan of action. In assembling that coalition, the legitimacy of our cause was affirmed. Regional stability was maintained. The risk to our soldiers was lessened. America's burden was reduced. And perhaps most importantly, Iraq was isolated. At this point we have done none of those things.
SEC. 3. AUTHORIZATION FOR USE OF UNITED STATES ARMED FORCES.
(a) AUTHORIZATION- The President is authorized to use the Armed Forces of the United States as he determines to be necessary and appropriate in order to _
(1) defend the national security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq; and
(2) enforce all relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq.
(b) PRESIDENTIAL DETERMINATION- In connection with the exercise of the authority granted in subsection (a) to use force the President shall, prior to such exercise or as soon thereafter as may be feasible, but no later than 48 hours after exercising such authority, make available to the Speaker of the House of Representatives and the President pro tempore of the Senate his determination that _
(1) reliance by the United States on further diplomatic or other peaceful means alone either (A) will not adequately protect the national security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq or (B) is not likely to lead to enforcement of all relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq; and
(2) acting pursuant to this resolution is consistent with the United States and other countries continuing to take the necessary actions against international terrorists and terrorist organizations, including those nations, organizations or persons who planned, authorized, committed or aided the terrorists attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001.
I oppose the resolution authorizing military force against Iraq. The wisdom of the war is one issue, but the process and the philosophy behind our foreign policy are important issues as well. But I have come to the conclusion that I see no threat to our national security. There is no convincing evidence that Iraq is capable of threatening the security of this country, and, therefore, very little reason, if any, to pursue a war.
But I am very interested also in the process that we are pursuing. This is not a resolution to declare war. We know that. This is a resolution that does something much different. This resolution transfers the responsibility, the authority, and the power of the Congress to the President so he can declare war when and if he wants to. He has not even indicated that he wants to go to war or has to go to war; but he will make the full decision, not the Congress, not the people through the Congress of this country in that manner.
Over the last two days, an overwhelming majority of elected representatives we pay and whom, at our behest, are duty bound to protect our interests authorized a supposedly former alcoholic and cocaine addict who has never witnessed a day of combat to use force against Iraq without even the slightest hint of a plan, strategy, set of milestones to measure return on investment of life and money, or end game. Of course even if such information was available, none of these war-mongering, constitutionally barren cowards would have bothered to read it anyway. Much blood and suffering will be on their hands. Make them pay where it counts. Pretend your vote won't be tossed aside by the Supreme Court, and allow yourself to think you can vote them out of office.
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