Letters to the Editor

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WAR: Our representatives are asleep at the wheel

Letter by Robert E. Archer, Gig Harbor on March 21, 2011 at 1:42 pm with 38 Comments »
March 21, 2011 3:21 pm

I have called the offices of my congressman and senators to simply ask their view on the new war in Libya, that their party leader, our president, is taking us to. In every case, the aides said that there was no opinion forthcoming.

The word “shocking” is overused in today’s press, but what other word is there to describe a situation in which, as we begin a third war, those who are constitutionally empowered to declare war have no opinion on the subject?

We are unable to provide health care to our own people, build a modern train system, provide jobs or even educate our young. Yet we venture full throttle into yet one more war, and my representatives have no opinion.

Shocking, yet sadly not surprising

Leave a comment Comments → 38
  1. They don’t wanna critique da boss… to paraphrase a saying…

    if you can’t say something to support our boss… they say nothing at all.

  2. Rollo_Tomassi says:

    The U.S. government has decided to put American service members in harm’s way, and to deal death and destruction to some Libyans. A Senator or a Representative who claims to have no opinion on that decision is a coward.

    Stand with your President or stand against him, but please have the courage to take a stand!

  3. Obama’s actions in Libya only need Congressional approval if he decides to prolong it past three months.

  4. Make that two months.

  5. gowenray says:

    And, least you forget, it wasn’t started as a US action. It was a United Nations action to enforce their Security Council’s cease and desist order against still another despot’s tyrannical disregard for his country’s non-combantants.
    When are you going to realize that allowing these type regimes to exsist unmolested just because they’re not in your backyard is absurd pacifism.

  6. gowenray: UN approval only makes it legal, not necessary or wise. So after we take care of Libya, what other despotic regime should be on our list? The list is long. I am not sure if it is absurd pacifism to take care of our needs , before regime change in other countries.

  7. beerboy: Yes that is process which was used in our other two wars. I would have thought that our leaders would have something to say about Libya considering the success we have had in Iraq/Afghanistan.

  8. itsoruss says:

    You hit the nail right on the head.

  9. Robert, it is shocking that our representatives have no opinion on the Libyan Operation. One would think someone on their staff would have seen something about the possibility and the UN Resolution.

    bB you were right with the 90 days. The War Powers Act of 1973 says the President has the authority to comment US Military Forces, without prior approval of Congress. The Law also says the President is to notify Congress within 48 hours, and without congressional authorization forbids the military forces from remaining for more than 60 days, with an additional 30 day withdrawal period.

  10. The constitutional powers of the President as Commander-in-Chief to introduce United States Armed Forces into hostilities, or into situations where imminent involvement in hostilities is clearly indicated by the circumstances, are exercised only pursuant to
    (1) a declaration of war,
    (2) specific statutory authorization, or
    (3) a national emergency created by attack upon the United States, its territories or possessions, or its armed forces.

    Their was no declaration of war, Obama never consulted Congress, and their was no imminent threat of attack…


  11. “The President does not have power under the Constitution to unilaterally authorize a military attack in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat to the nation.

    As Commander-in-Chief, the President does have a duty to protect and defend the United States. In instances of self-defense, the President would be within his constitutional authority to act before advising Congress or seeking its consent. ”

    Senator Barack Obama, D-IL, 2008

  12. truthbusterguy says:

    Obama is desperate to create jobs and lower the UE number. He know the people will not re elect him if we have 10% UE.

    War helps create jobs so he is just trying to do what he can to put people back to work. It’s all about jobs, hope and change.

    All of you that voted for him have any regrets yet????? He doesn’t know what he is doing, just admit it.

  13. rr- well said.
    How about invoking the 1973 War Powers act to protect those rebels fighting for freedom while holed up…
    on their own property…
    on the north side of the Rio Grand…

  14. The War Powers Act of 1973:

    Gives the President the authority to the President introduces U.S. forces abroad in situations that might be construed as HOSTILITIES or IMMINENT HOSTILITIES.

    Requires Congress be notified within 48 hours, IF they are in session or when they come back into session.

    Once Congress is notified, the forces may remain committed for 60 days, with an additional 30 day drawdown period.



  15. Many conservatives on these blogs were criticizing Obama for dithering because he had not got involved in Lybia. Now that he has got involved, they are, or will be criticizing him for getting involved.

    At least, for those who didn’t want U.S. involvement, its a comfort to know that we finally have a commander-in-chief who has the patience and common sense to keep his gun in his holster until the U.N. arrives on the scene.

  16. And your point xring…

  17. lars -the US Military can only be used within the US in a law enforcement mode after Marital Law has been declared.

    rr- the point is that Obama has the authority to comment US forces to enforce the UN resolution on Libya WITHOUT THE CONCENT OF CONGRESS.

  18. hmmmm, how many U.N. resolutions does it take ?
    How easy some people forget…
    “has the authority to” commit “US forces to enforce the UN resolution”… why, that’s just kooky.

  19. We can all hide behind the War Powers act and debate the authority of a President to commit American blood and bodies to a foreign conflict…. honestly something is not right here…. it makes little to no sense why Libya and not Eygpt, Tunisia, Iran, Baharain, etc…

    Though I loath to use this as a point of discussion… one more time… though I LOATH to use this as a point of discussion… I heard this and thought… He actually makes some interesting points.

    Take a listen… I got a bad feeling… a really bad gut feeling…. we stepped in it….

    “The Minister blasted President Obama and Secretary Clinton for their arrogance in meddling in another sovereign nation’s affairs and publicly recommending regime change.”


    (Disclaimer: i have little clue about the site itself, I was more interested in the video. It is the Minister and was an unedited segment of the radio show.)

  20. I am wondering how many anti-Iraq invasion folks are supporting the action in Libya and, conversely, how many pro-Iraq invasion folks are now criticizing the military action in Libya……

    I have mixed feelings about it. Gaddafi is horrific and I want to see him successfully overthrown but don’t believe that the US should be involved in what are, essentially, internal disputes.

  21. Found this little nugget…

    “As Gateway Pundit reports via USA Today, back in 2007 Obama said preventing genocide is not enough to justify military action:

    Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama said Thursday the United States cannot use its military to solve humanitarian problems and that preventing a potential genocide in Iraq isn’t a good enough reason to keep U.S. forces there.

    “Well, look, if that’s the criteria by which we are making decisions on the deployment of U.S. forces, then by that argument you would have 300,000 troops in the Congo right now — where millions have been slaughtered as a consequence of ethnic strife — which we haven’t done,” Obama said in an interview with The Associated Press.”

  22. From UN Resolution 1973:

    “Expressing grave concern at the deteriorating situation, the escalation of violence, and the heavy civilian casualties…

    Considering that the widespread and systematic attacks currently taking place in the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya against the civilian population may amount to crimes against humanity…

    ^^^Analysis: These first two highlighted sections emphasise that this is all about defending the civilian population in Libya from attacks by its own government. One of the conditions for action set out by Nato countries has been “a demonstrable need” to intervene.^^^

    Expressing its determination to ensure the protection of civilians and civilian populated areas and the rapid and unimpeded passage of humanitarian assistance and the safety of humanitarian personnel…”

    hmmm… if you are going to criticize a previous action of the US…. and you are now a US President… shouldn’t you follow your own advice now that you are a US President… hmmm…

  23. President Obama criticized President Bush on his run up to the Presidency about any and all actions he took in the invasion of Iraq.

    Now he authorizes the bombing of another country without even a discussion with the Congress let alone to get their apporval before doing so ???

    Its totally amazing that the lame stream media gives him a pass on bombing another country and calling on the leader of that country to step down Now.

    The lame stream media never missed a chance to attack every move Bush made during the invasion of both Afg. and Iraq.

    Bush advised the Congress and the United Nations and Nato of his intentions to take action against Iraq and Afg in fight the War On Terrorists before comitting our troops to War

    At the next press conference Obama gives the lame stream media will ask him how his daughters like there vacation in Rio, and if he travels well with his mother-in-law, rather than ask him questions about all the wars and the 4.00 a gall gas price and getting higher and higher, or about the crises in Japan, no they will ask him where he is going on his next vacation. .

  24. There is nothing that our enemies love better than watching us bankrupt ourselves fighting their wars.

    100 missles? $100 million.

    Meanwhile our 3 day a week House of Representatives worries about $5 million in NPR funding and Planned Parenthood.

    Obama? If he does nothing he’s a coward. If he takes action that Congress doesn’t have time to work on, he’s wrong there, too

    I’ve said it many times before, but once more for good measure…..

    The first black QB in the NFL was called “dumb” for throwing an interception and was called a “showboat” for running the ball for a touchdown.

    Kinda tough to be successful when everything you do is wrong.

  25. “Bush advised the Congress and the United Nations and Nato of his intentions to take action against Iraq and Afg in fight the War On Terrorists before comitting our troops to War”
    Bush was told by the United Nations weapons inspectors to wait.

    Bush provided false information to Congress, which is worse than not saying anything.

  26. some apples and oranges here. The Afghanistan and Iraq invasions involved boots on the ground – so far, Libya is about lobbing deadly weapons from the water or the sky.

  27. bush started a 10 year war on a UN resolution, 2 days in and you are whining Bob?

    The president has the authority to do this, and he will have it over and done in less than 30 days.
    Before he went you all were whining about him not doing enough….make up your mind, or at least have fox make up your mind.

  28. Lame stream media?!

    Sister Sara is that you?

  29. “The first black QB in the NFL was called “dumb” for throwing an interception and was called a “showboat” for running the ball for a touchdown.”

    the race card… too funny…

    “Kinda tough to be successful when everything you do is wrong.”

    He has done some things right. I hear his NCAA bracket is doing well….

    Read more: http://blog.thenewstribune.com/letters/2011/03/21/our-representative-asleep-at-the-wheel/#ixzz1HNItJenN

  30. Conservatives would bitch if they were hung with new rope.

  31. Rollo was on to something… throttle back to the beginning of this thing and between the President, Secretary of State, Department of Defense, the talking point press secretary, one could not tell the position of the administration… they appeared to be all conflicting at one point of another.

  32. “The president has the authority to do this, and he will have it over and done in less than 30 days.”

    The boom-boom stuff will be but then again a political committee will soon be in charge of the no-fly zone… it will take them 30 days just to figure out the shape of the meeting table.

  33. Rollo_Tomassi says:

    xring wrote “he point is that Obama has the authority to comment US forces to enforce the UN resolution on Libya WITHOUT THE CONCENT OF CONGRESS.”


    xtp855 wrote “The president has the authority to do this, and he will have it over and done in less than 30 days.”

    Are you just repeating something you heard, or vocalizing your belief system? I wonder if either of you can cite where in either the Constitution or the War Powers Act that the president has the authority to prosecute military action in a foreign country’s civil war in order to “protect” one side or the other. I understand the humanity of it, but where is the legality of it?

  34. R_T, disengage mouth, and engage fingers to read the two sites posted under my original post.

    Which for your connivance are repeated below.



  35. Pretend I am a 12 year old…

    Why did the President of the United States commit the US military to action in Libya?

    Considering the three circumstances cited above from the War Powers act, under which circumstance and/or combination of circumstances did the President commit US military forces?

    Considering the Presidents believes “The President does not have power under the Constitution to unilaterally authorize a military attack in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat to the nation.” Why did he do exactly what he specifically stated the President should not do?

    For discussion… the US Constitution as well as Laws (War Powers Act) appear to be in conflict with the UN Resolution (portion cited above). Does the UN resolution allow the US to ignore its own Constitution and Laws to commit forces to enforce a UN resolution?

    just askin’

  36. “connivance” ??? Only in a “muslin nation”.

  37. Lunchtime…. thought I checked the news…. wow, things in Libya seem to be going well…


    Cruise missile… a few hundred thousand dollars
    F-15 Strike Eagle… a few million dollars
    Aircraft Carrier…. a few billion dollars
    Obama, Commander in Chief…. priceless

  38. Roncella says:

    98411, Ain’t It Ashame how the liberal posters are all having to fall over backwords to defend President Obama and Hillary Clinton in ordering the Bombing of a Country and the leader of that Country to Leave Now, without even first at least having a discussion with the Congress, un-believeable !!

    If President Bush had attempted to do this same thing the Lame Stream Media and the Dems. in Congress would have pee peed in their pants all of them.

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