President Obama’s claims this week that the War Powers Act doesn’t apply to the Libyan War on the grounds that it falls short of “hostilities” sounded ridiculous when he made them. The behind the scenes debate that led to this announcement, however, was nothing short of incredible.
That’s because President Obama’s claim not only didn’t convince Congress, it didn’t convince his own legal advisers, and both the Pentagon and the Justice Department counsels told the president unequivocally that the war required Congressional approval.
White House spokesman Eric Shultz said the decision came after a “full airing of views.” In the end this simply means that the president thumbed his nose at head legal counsels for both the Pentagon, charged with fighting the illegal war, and the Justice Department, in theory responsible for upholding the law.
Schultz insisted that disagreements in such debates are “ordinary and healthy,” but it is decidedly out of the ordinary for the president to ignore such advice when it comes from top legal officials.
It seems surprising, in retrospect, that President Obama even had to ask if dropping bombs on a country counted as “hostilities.” But having heard from his top legal minds that yes, these are “hostilities,” the unfathomable truth is that he simply decided to ignore it.
24 thoughts on “Pentagon, Justice Dept Both Told Obama He Needed Authorization for Libya War”
This is not the president we voted for. Why or who has got to his cerebral mechanics is a question of great interest. Maybe the President of the USA is King of the World and he learns of this position to defend when he assumes office. Can anyone explain it?
He is the guy you voted for: a political extremist with a very short paper trail — an unvetted candidate with a bright smile. What continues to shock is his penchant for waging wars — wasn't he supposed to be the "peace" candidate?
You're right I didn't vote for him. I voted Ron Paul, the true peace candidate.
So would this be an impeachable offense? Oh wait and I forgot, Bushco tortured and warred and Kongress did nothing. These United States of Amerika are toast.
Whichever party holds the House determines whether or not there will be impeachment, and since the Repubs control it, it is conceivable they could bring the subject up. However, the Senate is controlled by Democrats, and it is well known that they would never vote to convict. So there is no point in impeaching.
Except that impeachment burdens the president with defending himself, distracts him, makes him look weak, and in general diminishes his effectiveness. Additionally, to have impeachment proceedings going on during the president's re-election campaign can only have a negative impact on his re-election, don't you think?.
It seams that every American president needs to have a war under his name.., is there a wall of fame somewhere in Washington or a room hidden at democratic party or for that matter Republican party that asks for presidents to start a war to be remembered..? Is there a trophy given out by Nobel Peace price in Sweden or Oslo or some banks.., I mean enough is enough.
US been at war for last 60 years from Vietnam to South America to Middle East and now Libya.., non of these countries been attacking US.., by doing so US has lost its credibility almost everywhere.., my question to US democracy or US democratic party is: when enough is enough for you people to weak up and stop producing such president who day after election slaps your face and thereby democracy itself by starting another war and lying to people.., when enough is enough for US stop warmongering around the world and start helping nations by not being in war with them. Everyone including Mr. Barack Hussein Obama and the rest of you “democrats” knows that Libyan war is not about democracy nor the Muslims Brotherhood would produce such regime in Libya, everyone knows that this war is about African Union and everyone knows that this war is personal, demanded by Saudis and Arab Emirates against Mr. Kaddafi as it was a personal war against Saddam Hussein made possible by Bush and Paul Wplfowitz regimes, everyone knows that what is called Muslims Brotherhood have their terrorist affiliations with them active in Libya while US have declared war against terrorists. So when enough is enough for US and NATO to start backtracking their own history and see that US/NATO have come nowhere with all these wars.., you want peace in Middle East search for the real problem, you want peace and not being involved in more wars look into your relations’ with those who take you to wars.., in the other hand if peace is not desired and is not on your political agenda then tell the world and at least be truthful about it.., be my and millions of other guest start the third world war and let monkeys build a new world.
American Govt = Little boy playing emperor with a gaggle of organ grinder monkeys egging him on.
No doubt this is a complex situation and no one reading this will have anything close to all the facts, but we can at least ask questions such as: Who benefits from yet another undeclared and possibly unconstitutional war? Does "follow the money" apply here? Will normal citizens who identify themselves as Democrats be able to distinguish and/or stomach the differences between when Obama rams a war down the country's throat and when BushCo did it? Are the apparent corporate connections between the war/politics/mainstream media machines just obvious to paranoids of a certain age or are they real? Is Anthony Weiner really more important than all this?
This is indeed an impeachable offense, and hearings need to start immediately. t would be nice to see the House take this up, but I'm not holding my breath. Meanwhile, The Kucinich lawsuit should be able to bring all of this out into the light while we are waiting for our corrupt and lazy Congress to do something.
Obomba is just following the Nixon Doctrine: "If the president does it, that means it is not illegal."
How'd that turn out for Nixon?
It's different now. Now it's de facto true.
So much for being a Constitutional scholar…I seldom agree with nor stomach whatever the republicans in Congress do – or try to do – but in this case they really need to impeach Obama. In fact, what would have more impact would be for the DEMOCRATS in the House to begin impeachment proceedings. Hey Dennis!!! He's all yours!! Nail him. And then you all can then open war crimes proceedings against Bush and Cheney and company. I mean, if you're going to clean house and set precedent, do it right. Look back and set the groundwork to proscribe the actions of the Executive before a really, really scary wacko gets in there…(Bachmann/Perry/"none of your fckin' business"Christy/Palin)
really scary wacko compared to Obama? He's the one that is President, not a hypothetical president and he is actually doing all of these things.
President Obama has made a brave decision to protect America from Gaddafi.
Gaddaffi hates American freedom and is sending terrorists to destroy our nations tall buildings.
He had a major hand in 911 as reported here
We must stop him before he gets nuclear weapons which he is working on at this moment and is only months away.
He has tons of WMD which he is waiting to use as soon as our brave young fighting men, women and drones set foot in Libya.
We must ally and support the forces against him who seek only freedom through Sharia.
America must not show weakness. If we leave Libya, like a house of cars, and a row of dominoes the entire African continent will come under his control and he will not hesitate to use Atomic Weapons against Europe and Israel. Israel is the place where our nations lord and savior was born and we are obligated to protect it in respect for Jesus Christ who is also the son of God and God and a little bird called the Holy Spirit which we cannot understand because were just not smart enough to figure out the mysteries of God who is a very intelligent and complex person but is also an American citizen who loves America and our brave young fighting men, women and drones.
I could go on, but most people aren't as intelligent as Barack Obama who understands God wants him to win reelection and keep the economy alive through war against Muslim infidels.
God has been trying to tell us to fight these people since the crusades because they believe God is Allah and that's not his name and it really pisses him off when someone calls him Allah
Thank you because when some people don't understand complexities like you when because of your brains and mine.
Maybe we could start a blog togethers with my skills and yours too.
corperiete security, a dangerous man, a monarchial colonel like that could Lib erate, iya, Africa, what with thare own telacommunications satalites, water projects and soverign banking, they could ultimitly free the shackled chains, the tyranny enslaved from pre-industrial imperial colonial times, danger, danger global hegamon,,,ps,also don’t forget national health care, its enough to really piss a bilder burger off, huh, freedom & democracy to the non elitist lower classes, everyone else eat cake, yer participation is mandatory,,,besides we got the garage surrounded, we will not maim you or sell you,,,publically
That the first black US President wants to bomb Africa is not "unfathomable" at all.
(i) Obama is a psycho, have you still not figured that out yet?
(ii) Its an oil rich bit of Africa.
Today I wrote my Republican whore congressman to demand Obama's impeachment over this issue. I figured that was more productive than just bitching about it here, though I don't expect it to lead to any action since Congress would not want to set the precedent of impeaching a president over something that mattered. A president will only be impeached for a sex scandal.
At least Bush had enough respect for congress to fabricate evidence and get authorization for his war on Iraq. Bush = worse than Clinton. Obama = worse than Bush.
How about an alternative view:
1. The Imperial Presidency is a myth.
2. The President is an empty suit controlled by oligarchs. The will of the 30 trumps that of the 300 million each and every time.
3. It matter not what a President thinks anyway because the moment he deviates from the plan he will be crushed by the oligarchs and flung aside like a used condom.
4. Therefore it behooves the intelligent few to cease carping about what an empty suit does or does not do and concentrate on the real issues: oligarchical control of the legislature and the executive branch by financial interests.
Just a thought.
The President may well be a puppet of the plutocrats, but that doesn't explain why the Obamination didn't seek congressional approval for his Libyan rampage , since he'd have surely got it from the plutocrats' puppet gallery., were Libya truly on their agenda.
Bring them to the courts and trial them for treason!
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