Friday June 29, 2018
In the days following the 9/11 attacks, Congress passed into law a 60-word sentence that set the stage for perpetual war. This 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) contains no time limits, no geographic constraints, and no exit strategy. It has effectively become a blank check for any president, at any time, to wage war without congressional consent or oversight.That is a portion of the cogent analysis Reps Barbara Lee (D-CA) and Justin Amash (R-MI) offer in their Wednesday The Hill editorial explaining why they support repealing the AUMF that has facilitated members of the United States Congress abdicating their authority over US wars and three presidents exercising unrestrained use of military force abroad. The editorial came the day after Lee and Amash hosted a joint hearing of the United States House of Representatives Progressive Caucus and Liberty Caucus focused on exploring repealing the AUMF.
According to the Congressional Research Service, the 2001 AUMF has been cited as statutory authority for unclassified military or related actions at least 41 times in 18 countries. Both President George W. Bush and President Obama used it, and now President Trump is following the same path.