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Tuesday, September 3, 2013

About that Congressional Authorization

by Clifford F. Thies 

It is a good thing that the President has asked for Congressional authorization to use force in Syria. It is also a good thing that those who use chemical weapons be held accountable. But, as to why it is the job of the United States to enforce the chemical weapons ban is not clear. And, if the United States plays to role of world's policeman it will drain our treasury as well as the blood of our soldiers, and encourage fecklessness on the part of other countries that should play their role.

Under prior Presidents, we were able to assemble meaningful coalitions. In these coalitions, we provided the man-share of combat forces and our military played the role of spearhead. Most of the rest of the democratic nations of the world concluded that they could reduce their spending on military to 1 percent of GDP or less. 

Among the democratic nations, we, the Israelis, South Korea, Singapore and our allies among the Arab nations continue to spend 3 percent or more. Turkey and the United Kingdom spend 2.5 percent.  After that, it's 1 percent or less. 

France, with a seat on the Security Council, should be ashamed; and, Germany and Japan should no longer use their culpability for WWII as an excuse for not joining in the defense of peace and freedom in the world. It is cumbersome for the Congress to conduct foreign policy; but, it is possible that it could use the occasion of authorizing the use of force in Syria to communicate that the people of the United States, while willing to do our part, demand that our allies do likewise and expect the President to be persuasive in this regard. 

Perhaps the President might take his job seriously, instead of concerning himself mostly with vacationing and golf, and maybe he could act like the leader of the free world instead of kissing up to others who are not his equal no less his superior. 

As grist for mill, we offer the following draft joint resolution for Congress to consider. Given the resolutions of the Arab League and of the National Assembly of Turkey, should there be one from the National Assembly of Turkey, with regard to the use of chemical weapons by Syria, The President of the United States is authorized to use force, if necessary, to bring President Assad of Syria and others he deems responsible for the use of chemical weapons by Syria to justice in the International Criminal Court, provided, (1) That the use of ground forces of the United States is not authorized by this resolution except insofar as necessary for intelligence gathering and in search and rescue operations; (2) That the members of the Arab League and Turkey commit to use ground troops as may be necessary; (3) That at least half of our NATO allies and at least half of our non-NATO allies commit forces and other resources the total of which at least equals our commitment.


mitsukurina said...

"Among the democratic nations, we, the Israelis, South Korea, Singapore and our allies among the Arab nations continue to spend 3 percent or more."

Which democratic Arab allies would these be, exactly?

mitsukurina said...

Yes, best to move on eh? No need to answer questions about those democracies (maybe youre thinking of Saudi Arabia? Or maybe Bahrain?)