Rand Paul: Congress Moves to Give the President Unlimited War Powers

Rand Paul: Congress Moves to Give the President Unlimited War Powers

In the near future, Congress will debate a new Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF). I use the word “debate” lightly. So far, no hearings have been scheduled, and no testimony is likely to be heard unless something changes. That’s a shame, because this is a serious matter, and this is a deeply flawed AUMF.
For some time now, Congress has abdicated its responsibility to declare war. The status quo is that we are at war anywhere and anytime the president says so.
So Congress—in a very Congress way of doing things—has a “solution.” Instead of reclaiming its constitutional authority, it instead intends to codify the unacceptable, unconstitutional status quo.
It is clear upon reading the AUMF, put forward by Senators Tim Kaine and Bob Corker, that it gives nearly unlimited power to this or any other president to be at war whenever he or she wants, with minimal justification and no prior specific authority.
That isn’t an AUMF. That isn’t Congress reclaiming its constitutional duties. That’s a complete rewriting of the role of the executive and of the constitutional separation of powers.
Read the rest at theamericanconservative.com

Rand Paul: Congress Moves to Give the President Unlimited War Powers

5/9/18 Jon Schwarz on the new AUMF, indefinite detention of Americans, and Syria

The Intercept’s Jon Schwarz returns to the show to discuss his article latest work for the Intercept about the new AUMF, the Trump administration’s strikes on Syria, and indefinite detainment of U.S. citizens. Schwarz makes the case that the new AUMF, meant to cure the ills of the old AUMF, is actually an even graver threat and has codified permanent war. Schwarz then describes the twisted logic used by the Trump administration to apply the AUMF to the strikes against Assad. Schwarz says that anyone who remembers the political climate in 2001 should be very frightened by the developments under the Trump administration.
Jon Schwarz is a writer for The Intercept. Previously he worked for documentary film maker Michael Moore and his blog Tiny Revolution. Follow him on Twitter @schwarz.
Discussed on the show:

  • “Cure Worse Than Disease: Bill to Restrict Trump’s War Powers Would Actually ‘Endorse a Worldwide War on Terror’,” by Jon Schwarz (The Intercept)
  • “New Bipartisan Bill Could Give any President the Power to Imprison U.S. Citizens in Military Detention Forever,” by Jon Schwarz (The Intercept)
  • “Donald Trump Ordered Syria Strike Based on a Secret Legal Justification Even Congress Can’t See,” by Jon Schwarz (The Intercept)

This episode of the Scott Horton Show is sponsored by: Zen CashThe War State, by Mike Swanson; WallStreetWindow.comRoberts and Roberts Brokerage Inc.LibertyStickers.comTheBumperSticker.com; and ExpandDesigns.com/Scott.
Check out Scott’s Patreon page.

Rand Paul: Congress Moves to Give the President Unlimited War Powers

3/9/18 Eric Eikenberry on the Senate Joint Resolution to end American support for the War in Yemen

Eric Eikenberry of the Yemen Peace Project joins Scott to discuss Senate Joint Resolution 54, which invokes the War Powers Resolution of 1973 to end U.S. aid and support the bombardment of Yemen by coalition forces. Eikenberry explains why, in addition to ending the catastrophic bombardment of Yemen, the invocation of the War Powers Resolution is so significant—it’s never happened before. Eikenberry then explains why the AUMF gets tied up in the language of Joint Senate Resolution 54 and has stopped Rand Paul in particular from sponsoring the bill.

To support Senate Joint Resolution 54 the number to call is: 1-833-786-7927.

Eric Eikenberry is the Director of Policy & Advocacy at the Yemen Peace Project and an advocacy associate at Americans for Democracy & Human Rights in Bahrain. Follow him on Twitter @eric_eikenberry.

Discussed on the show:

  •  “S.J.Res.54 – A joint resolution to direct the removal of United States Armed Forces from hostilities in the Republic of Yemen that have not been authorized by Congress” (Congress.gov)
  • Todd Young
  • “GOP Senator Once Critical Of Yemen War Helps Trump Block Senate Debate On It” (Huffington Post)
  • “10/26/17 Kate Kizer on H.Con.Res.81 and how to end the war in Yemen” (The Scott Horton Show)

This episode of the Scott Horton Show is sponsored by: Zen CashThe War State, by Mike Swanson; WallStreetWindow.comRoberts and Roberts Brokerage Inc.LibertyStickers.comTheBumperSticker.com; and ExpandDesigns.com/Scott.

Check out Scott’s Patreon page.

Rand Paul: Congress Moves to Give the President Unlimited War Powers

2/23/18 Jonathan Hafetz on the American citizen being detained without charge in Iraq

The ACLU’s John Hafetz returns to the show to discuss the American citizen and alleged ISIS fighter being held without charge in Iraq. Hafetz explains how a judge granted the man access to a lawyer through the ACLU and how Hafetz and others have been fighting to get the man to court. Hafetz then discusses the former cases under the Bush administration when Americans were charged as enemy combatants. According to Hafetz the case will hinge on whether the AUMF allows Americans to be detained without charge and whether it can be extended to a group like ISIS that wasn’t originally included in the AUMF.

Jonathan Hafetz is a senior staff attorney at the ACLU Center for Democracy. He teaches at Seton Hall Law School and has published many books. Follow him on Twitter @JonathanHafetz.

Discussed on the show:

This episode of the Scott Horton Show is sponsored by: Zen CashThe War State, by Mike Swanson; WallStreetWindow.comRoberts and Roberts Brokerage Inc.LibertyStickers.comTheBumperSticker.com; and ExpandDesigns.com/Scott.

Check out Scott’s Patreon page.

Rand Paul: Congress Moves to Give the President Unlimited War Powers

11/7/17 Congressman Walter Jones on his fight for H.Con.Res.81 and against the War Party

Congressman Walter Jones of North Carolina joins Scott to discuss his co-sponsorship of H.Con.Res.81, the United States’s never-ending wars, and how Congress can take back its mantle. Jones explains why he blames Paul Ryan for the lack of a vote on H.Con.Res.81, how Congress has abdicated its responsibility on matters of war, and why issues of war and peace are the most pressing that are facing the U.S.

Discussed on the show:

Quote of the show: “Scott, that is the dishonesty of Washington…the Rules Committee is nothing but a puppet group…it’s just hogwash to be honest with you.” – Walter Jones

 

Rand Paul: Congress Moves to Give the President Unlimited War Powers

10/6/17 Gareth Porter on Congress’s potential role in ending the war in Yemen

Gareth Porter returns to the show to discuss his article for The American Conservative Magazine, “When Did Congress Vote to Aid the Saudi’s Yemen War?” Porter explains why, despite there being zero national security interest at stake, the U.S. is involved in the aerial war in Yemen. He and Scott then discuss the clearly misleading fatality figures which they suspect are being vastly underreported by the U.N. Porter then gets to the crux of his article: how members of Congress are attempting to use the War Powers act to end U.S. involvement in Yemen. Scott delves into the history of the War Powers Act and explains why it’s been utterly misinterpreted. Finally, Porter touches on the Saudi blockade which, with help from the U.S. Navy, is stopping needed supplies from arriving to help the desperate Yemenis.

Gareth Porter is an investigative historian and journalist on the national security state and author of Manufactured Crisis: The Untold Story of the Iran Nuclear Scare. Follow him on Twitter @GarethPorter and listen to Gareth’s previous appearances on the Scott Horton Show.

Discussed on the show:

Rand Paul: Congress Moves to Give the President Unlimited War Powers

10/6/17 Gareth Porter on Congress's potential role in ending the war in Yemen

Gareth Porter returns to the show to discuss his article for The American Conservative Magazine, “When Did Congress Vote to Aid the Saudi’s Yemen War?” Porter explains why, despite there being zero national security interest at stake, the U.S. is involved in the aerial war in Yemen. He and Scott then discuss the clearly misleading fatality figures which they suspect are being vastly underreported by the U.N. Porter then gets to the crux of his article: how members of Congress are attempting to use the War Powers act to end U.S. involvement in Yemen. Scott delves into the history of the War Powers Act and explains why it’s been utterly misinterpreted. Finally, Porter touches on the Saudi blockade which, with help from the U.S. Navy, is stopping needed supplies from arriving to help the desperate Yemenis.
Gareth Porter is an investigative historian and journalist on the national security state and author of Manufactured Crisis: The Untold Story of the Iran Nuclear Scare. Follow him on Twitter @GarethPorter and listen to Gareth’s previous appearances on the Scott Horton Show.
Discussed on the show:

Rand Paul: Congress Moves to Give the President Unlimited War Powers

10/2/17 Dr. Ron Paul on Trump’s verbal threats toward North Korea

In his return to the Scott Horton Show, Ron Paul reflects on his “Yes” vote on the Authorized Use of Military Force following 9/11, how it continues to be used and abused today, and the history of how the United States has perverted its legal authority in foreign policy. Then Dr. Paul turns to the escalating situation in North Korea. Paul shares why he has some optimism about the situation in North Korea, his worries about Trump’s volatility, and what he would have done about North Korea as president.

Former congressman Ron Paul is a true American hero. He is the host of the Ron Paul Liberty Report and director of the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity. Dr. Paul is the author of numerous books, including Swords into Plowshares and The Revolution: A Manifesto. Follow him on Twitter, @RonPaul.

Discussed on the show:

Rand Paul: Congress Moves to Give the President Unlimited War Powers

10/2/17 Dr. Ron Paul on Trump's verbal threats toward North Korea

In his return to the Scott Horton Show, Ron Paul reflects on his “Yes” vote on the Authorized Use of Military Force following 9/11, how it continues to be used and abused today, and the history of how the United States has perverted its legal authority in foreign policy. Then Dr. Paul turns to the escalating situation in North Korea. Paul shares why he has some optimism about the situation in North Korea, his worries about Trump’s volatility, and what he would have done about North Korea as president.
Former congressman Ron Paul is a true American hero. He is the host of the Ron Paul Liberty Report and director of the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity. Dr. Paul is the author of numerous books, including Swords into Plowshares and The Revolution: A Manifesto. Follow him on Twitter, @RonPaul.
Discussed on the show:

Rand Paul: Congress Moves to Give the President Unlimited War Powers

Left and Right, US Lawmakers Unite Against Escalating War in Syria

Bipartisan Bills Aim to Stop Escalation of War, Arming of Islamists

While the Pentagon provides plans for the Trump Administration for a major escalation of the US involvement in the war in Syria, new bipartisan legislation is being pushed in both the House and the Senate aiming to oppose the escalation and put legal obstacles in the way of it.

Reps. Barbara Lee (D – CA) and Walter Jones (R – NC) are pushing one such bill, aiming to force Congress to debate US involvement in Syria, and to repeal the 2001 Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) to prevent the administration from using it as an excuse for the operation.

With the repeal of the AUMF, the bill would also explicitly forbid the deployment of additional US ground troops to Syria without any permission from Congress. The bill is gaining some support in both parties, though past efforts to repeal the AUMF, and to try to limit the wars in Iraq and Syria, have never gained enough support to pass.

If it does get support, this might force a significant shift in policy, with the US nominally having capped their Syrian force at 503, but having closer to 2,000 by most recent estimates. This mirrors caps that were in place in Iraq, which were similarly long since blown past.

This is just one of the bills aimed at US policy is Syria, with Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D – HI) and Sen. Rand Paul (R – KY) offering a bipartisan “Stop Arming Terrorists Act,” which would forbid US government funds from being used to support al-Qaeda, ISIS, or any other terrorist group.

While that seems like common sense, the bill would effectively kill the CIA’s program to arm Syrian rebels, as many of the recipient factions are allies of al-Qaeda, or ideologically similar groups. Rep. Gabbard visited Syria shortly before the Trump inauguration, and met with President Assad.

The Gabbard bill would also require the Director of National Intelligence to provide up to date lists every six months of the individuals and groups forbidden to receive aid, either because they are terrorist groups or are working with them. This is another piece of information that the CIA has previously, desperately, sought to avoid as part of its arming program.

This bill is more likely to get some support from the Trump Administration, as President Trump had similarly argued against arming rebels repeatedly throughout the election campaign, though since the inauguration, there has yet to be a public move to end the CIA program.

Republished with permission from Antiwar.com

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