Forum Thread

"Kinetic military action" and the Libyan war

Reply to ThreadDisplaying 2 Posts
  • Are you sure you want to delete this post?
    Well....what a boondoggle this Obama v. Congress showdown over the War Powers Resolution has turned out to be. 
    Check out Washington Examiner reporter Byron York's "White House: Libya fight is not war, it's 'kinetic military action.'"
    Now, just to be clear, I'm hawkish on Libya, but I do draw the line at American ground troops. However, I'm not a fan of either side in the debate over the War Powers Act.
    My basic belief is that under the UN participation act of 1945, even with its subsequent amendments in 1949, the President has the standing authority to take this nation to war, when the UN Security Council invokes Article 42, and/or other Article 43 agreements (which have never been done, and require authorization by Congress like any treaty).    
    It's upon this standing authority to support the UN mission and enforce Article 42  that Obama initiated our intervention in Libya, and it was also within the realm of the emergency powers of the president, as Commander-in-Chief and Head of State.  

    But now with the role of our military shifting to a primary support and auxillary role, the Obama Administration claims that our efforts don't meet the standard upon which it would be subject to the checks on executive war-making power provided by the War Powers Act.
    According to the administration, we are helping to enforce Resolution 1973, but our military role is not subject to perodic Congressional review per the War Powers Act.  
    However, irrespective of the WPA  question, it is still subject to general review by Congress, and Congress can reject funding for the president's policy, and with a 2/3 majority, Congress can override a presidential veto of laws banning US involvement in Libya.  

    But what does meet the standard under the War Powers Act? 
    At what point does "kinetic military action" become war? 
    The Rebels are certainly fighting a war, aren't we helping them? 

    So I'm not too thrilled by the Administration's arguments.  I'm keeping my judgment reserved for now, but either way, it's all very bad politics. 
    Republicans are now attacking the president from the LEFT and Romney's running a valence campaign.  This is no time for convoluted arguments over Libya.  The president should go to Congress and tell them blood will be on their hands, if they don't support him in Libya, and dare them to condemn the mission.
  • Are you sure you want to delete this post?
    Look.....the Administration may have a point about the inapplicability of the War Powers Act in the current case of our Libyan efforts.  
    It may not be applicable as of now.  It was certainly in effect at the onset of our intervention.  That was definitely war and the Obama Administration complied with it's obligations under the WPA.  

    But I'm just having a hard time distinguishiing the line. 

    From here, it looks like Obama is trying to avoid Congressional scrutiny restraining his ability to act in Libya. 
    He does not want a bunch of isolationist Republicans & dovish Democrats attaching a bunch of conditions that limit or restrain our involvement.  
    Secondly, for domestic and geopolitical reasons, it's a good idea to put a European face on the Libyan operations, and the administration is obviously down-playing our role and agenda.