Tuesday, March 22, 2011

The Powers that Be

Photo From WhiteHouse.gov site
Saved as:  "hero_libya_chile_LJ-0341

The President's trip to Latin America has been focused on joint economic opportunities and promoting American exports, and his time in Chile, a country he called "one of the great success stories of this region," was no exception.  Nonetheless, it was probably not surprising that much of the Q&A period of his joint press conference with Chilean President Sebastian Pinera was focused on questions about the situation in Libya. 

Read the full transcript of those questions below, where he once again emphasized that the U.S. military involvement is limited to the grave and urgent humanitarian threat posed by Colonel Qaddafi to his people, and that the involvement will soon be led by our broad coalition of partners:

Q    Mr. President, Senor Presidente, muchas gracias.  Sir, how do you square your position that Colonel Qaddafi has lost legitimacy and must go against the limited objective of this campaign, which does not demand his removal?  If Colonel Qaddafi is killing his own people, is it permissible to let him stay in power?  And if I may add, do you have any regret, sir, about undertaking this mission while you’re on foreign soil?  And do you have the support of the Arab people in this yet?

PRESIDENT OBAMA:  Okay.  First of all, I think I’m going to embarrass Jim by letting everyone know that Jim’s mother is Chilean, and so this is a little bit of a homecoming.  You were born in Chile, am I right?

Q    Yes, sir.  It’s a delight to be here.  Thank you.

PRESIDENT OBAMA:  Fantastic.  So I thought everybody should know that.  And also, I think that for all the Chilean press, you don’t need to take Jim’s example by asking three questions, pretending it’s one.  (Laughter.)

Q    One subject.

PRESIDENT OBAMA:  First of all, I think it’s very easy to square our military actions and our stated policies.  Our military action is in support of a international mandate from the Security Council that specifically focuses on the humanitarian threat posed by Colonel Qaddafi to his people.  Not only was he carrying out murders of civilians but he threatened more.  He said very specifically, we will show no mercy to people who lived in Benghazi.

And in the face of that, the international community rallied and said we have to stop any potential atrocities inside of Libya, and provided a broad mandate to accomplish that specific task.  As part of that international coalition, I authorized the United States military to work with our international partners to fulfill that mandate.

"I authorized the United States military to work with our international partners to fulfill that mandate." - President Obama, March 21, 2011

All rightey then.  As long as we're working "with our international partners to fulfill that mandate", the President should be okay, right?

Do you feel it too? 

Do you feel another Inconvenient Truth coming? 

I know I do...

Yeah, here it comes: 

The War Powers Resolution of 1973 (50 U.S.C. 1541–1548) was a United States Congress joint resolution providing that the President can send U.S. armed forces into action abroad only by authorization of Congress or if the United States is already under attack or serious threat.

The War Powers Resolution requires the president to notify Congress within 48 hours of committing armed forces to military action and forbids armed forces from remaining for more than 60 days, with a further 30 day withdrawal period, without an authorization of the use of military force or a declaration of war. The resolution was passed by two-thirds of Congress, overriding a presidential veto.  [Source:  Wikipedia]


Anyone here feel as if the US "is already under attack or serious threat" from Libya?

Did the President consider who the 'rebel leaders' in Libya are; prior to our joining 'international partners' efforts to oust Muammar Qadhafi?

If the President acted under the War Powers Act without consultation of Congress, why did planning for this eventuality begin at the beginning of this month?  No phone on Air Force One from which he could have called US Lawmakers to tell them that the President was committing troops to a third military effort?

If, as the President promised, we are to turn over ongoing mission support to our "International Partners" in several days...  How come we're bombing Libya for the past four days?  My Mom taught me that 'several' meant 'two or three'. 

Why were half the sailors (410+) graduating from Navy Boot Camp (Great Lakes RTC) deployed to the Gulf immediately upon their graduation on March 11th if Operation Odyssey Dawn just kind of 'snuck up on the President'?

If we are following the U.N.'s lead (yeah, this ought to keep you up at night), how do you explain the following release on Defense.gov from March 19th, 2011:

"U.S. military forces are on the leading edge of the coalition operation, taking out Libya’s integrated air and missile defense system, Defense Department officials said. The ordnance is aimed at radars and anti-aircraft sites around the capital of Tripoli and other facilities along the Mediterranean coast.

Joint Task Force Odyssey Dawn is commanded by U.S. Navy Adm. Samuel J. Locklear aboard the command ship USS Mount Whitney. The Mount Whitney joins 24 other ships from Italy, Canada, the United Kingdom and France in launching the operation.

Cruise missiles from U.S. submarines and frigates began the attack on the anti-aircraft system. A senior defense official speaking on background said the attacks will “open up the environment so we could enforce the no-fly zone from east to west throughout Libya.”

In addition to the cruise missiles, the United States will provide command and control and logistics. American airmen and sailors also will launch electronic attacks against the systems.

The United Kingdom, France, Italy and Canada already have announced that they are part of the coalition. Officials expect Arab countries will publicly announce their participation soon." 
If I didn't know what President Obama said above, well, I would have thought from reading the above Defense Department article that the United States is leading this effort to overthrow yet another nation's sovereignty.

So the question is:  Who's lying?  The President, or American Forces Press Service?

Well, at least the President has taken this action with the full faith and approval of Congress...  Right?

Another Inconvenient Truth courtesy of Politico.com:  
A hard-core group of liberal House Democrats is questioning the constitutionality of U.S. missile strikes against Libya, with one lawmaker raising the prospect of impeachment during a Democratic Caucus conference call on Saturday.

Reps. Jerrold Nadler (N.Y.), Donna Edwards (Md.), Mike Capuano (Mass.), Dennis Kucinich (Ohio), Maxine Waters (Calif.), Rob Andrews (N.J.), Sheila Jackson Lee (Texas), Barbara Lee (Calif.) and Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D.C.) “all strongly raised objections to the constitutionality of the president’s actions” during that call, said two Democratic lawmakers who took part.

Kucinich, who wanted to bring impeachment articles against both former President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney over Iraq — only to be blocked by his own leadership — asked why the U.S. missile strikes aren’t impeachable offenses.

Kucinich also questioned why Democratic leaders didn’t object when President Barack Obama told them of his plan for American participation in enforcing the Libyan no-fly zone during a White House Situation Room meeting on Friday, sources told POLITICO.

And liberals fumed that Congress hadn’t been formally consulted before the attack and expressed concern that it would lead to a third U.S. war in the Muslim world.

While other Democratic lawmakers have publicly backed Obama — including House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and top members of the Armed Services, Foreign Affairs and Intelligence committees — the objections from a vocal group of anti-war Democrats on Capitol Hill could become a political problem for Obama, especially if “Operation Odyssey Dawn” fails to topple Libyan leader Muammar Qadhafi, leads to significant American casualties, or provokes a wider conflict in the troubled region of North Africa.

Next time I begin a war? 

Yeah, I'm thinking I'd like to be somewhere else at the time...  

And in case anyone is wondering WHY I have a beef with President Obama?  Shoot, that's nothing new, he and I don't agree on too much of anything.  A quick glance at prior posts on http://www.rightturnforever.com/ will confirm this. 

There are many reasons why I do not support the policies of President Obama, but only one for which I do.  He's my son's boss.  President Obama needs to remember that HE has a boss also.  And he can be fired... 

Nate Beeler 'Gets it':
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