Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Left & right Unite!: Press Congress to Declare War on ISIS --Even if Obama Isn't Strongly Committed

*Support Congressional critics seeking oversight on Obama's "war" on ISIS.
*VP Biden, Sec of State Kerry show presidential leadership on ISIS. Where's Obama? His campaign is lackadaisical.

ISIS the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq are horrible human rights violators, so extreme that Al Qaeda reject them as too extreme.

In the last 36 hours Steven Sotloff, the second U.S. journalist captured by ISIS was beheaded. CBS News has confirmed the video of the barbaric act as authentic.

In the past 5 days, several news reports have appeared that ISIS has sold or married captured women and girls to ISIS fighters, for the price of $1,000 a piece. Read at Al ArabiyaCNN or International Business Times.

Iraq's war death toll took a spike to 5,500 jsut for the first six months of this year, the Guardian reported, based on a United Nations report. And the U.N. reported that ISIS issued a fatwa dictating female genital mutilation for all women and girls; albeit, ISIS denied this.

ISIS still has too much control in the Mosul Dam region, even after non-ISIS fighters supposedly recaptured the dam.

ISIS still has nearly encircled the Iraqi capital of Baghdad. Reports from towns north of Baghdad, and from just a few miles south of Baghdad.

Incredibly, U.S. President Barack Obama refuses to take any real, decisive action vs. ISIS (aka ISIL). Just this weekend, he conceded that "We don't have a strategy yet" for pursuing ISIS in Iraq and Syria.

Laudably, Vice President Joe Biden said that "We will follow them to the Gates of Hell."

Secretary of State John Kerry wrote an opinion column in the New York Times, arguing for an international coalition to fight ISIS.

Recalling Congressional prerogative to Declare War
The commentary on Congress reacting to Obama's moves against ISIS have emphasized Congress' power to declare war, and how Obama has jumped the gun in taking the modest moves that he has done. This is well and good, as per what the Constitution says about war-declaring authority.

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.
--as the Atlantic Monthly noted.

Yet, let's look at this the other way around: It is increasingly clear that ISIS is not weakening and that its position is to strong and threatening. And Obama is not interested in taking decisively strong action against ISIS. If he will not do so, then Congress must declare war on ISIS, and press Obama to execute the action declared by Congress.

Let's be clear: this is not condoning the extreme international overreach that former President George W. Bush practiced in Iraq. The cause of stopping ISIS is not about profiting over Iraqi or Syrian resources. It is about stopping a genocidal army that is poised to become a genocidal regime.
And this does not mean that the U.S. ought to be involved in a years-long war in Iraq or Syria.

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