Tuesday August 2, 2016
Amidst the fury over the exchanges between Donald Trump and Khizr and Ghazala Khan, the couple who lost their son in Iraq, the mainstream media and mainstream political commentators are missing some important elements in the controversy.
In his speech at the Democratic national convention, Khizr Khan asked if Donald Trump had read the Constitution. That question raises a related question, one that arises within the context of the US government’s war on Iraq: What difference does it make whether Trump or anyone else has read the Constitution when the president and the national-security state branch of the federal government don’t comply with it anyway and the federal judiciary doesn’t enforce it against them?
The Constitution is the higher law that the American people have enacted that controls the actions of federal officials, including those in the Pentagon, the CIA, the NSA, and other parts of the national-security state branch of the federal government. When it called the federal government into existence, it set forth the powers it would be permitted to exercise. The Constitution tells the federal government what it can and cannot do.
The Constitution is clear on the matter of war: The president, the Pentagon, and the CIA are prohibited from waging war without a declaration of war from Congress.