Okay, here's the text:
There's a whole bunch of "Whereas..." and then the meat of it, red is my empasis this is my comment;
Section 1: Short title:
This joint resolution may be cited as the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002.
Section 2: Support for United States diplomatic efforts:Strictly enforce through the United Nations Security Council all relevant Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq and encourages him in those efforts and Obtain prompt and decisive action by the Security Council to ensure that Iraq abandons its strategy of delay, evasion and non-compliance and promptly and strictly complies with all relevant Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq.
The Congress of the United States supports the efforts by the President to:
Section 3: Authorization for the use of United States armed forces:
(a) Authorization: The President is authorized to use the Armed Forces of the United States as he determines to be necessary and appropriate in order to:
(1) Defend the national security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq; and
Ah, problem. The threat posed by Iraq, was illusory, but even with the gift of hindsight it was still doubted at the time. So, under this phrasing, the President did not have a reason to use Military Force against Iraq, even though he may have thought that he did (or wanted to anyway, so there!)
(2) Enforce all relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq.
(b) Presidential determination: In connection with the exercise of the authority granted in subsection (a) to use force the President shall, prior to such exercise or as soon thereafter as may be feasible, but no later than 48 hours after exercising such authority, make available to the Speaker of the House of Representatives and the President pro tempore of the Senate his determination that:
(1) Reliance by the United States on further diplomatic or other peaceful means alone either (A) will not adequately protect the national security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq or (B) is not likely to lead to enforcement of all relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq; and
(2) Acting pursuant to this joint resolution is consistent with the United States and other countries continuing to take the necessary actions against international terrorist and terrorist organizations, including those nations, organizations, or persons who planned, authorized, committed or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001.
More problems. Iraq were not involved in 911. The attack on Iraq was not an attack on terrorists(c) War Powers Resolution Requirements:
(1) Specific Statutory Authorization:
Consistent with section 8(a)(1) of the War Powers Resolution, the Congress declares that this section is intended to constitute specific statutory authorization within the meaning of section 5(b) of the War Powers Resolution.
Now this is interesting. http://www.yale.edu/lawweb/avalon/warpower.htm. Don't you just love the internet? Okay, I am scan reading but I think it boils down to this. Although 'use of force' is used, there is clear indication in the reference to and the text of the War Powers Resolution that we are talking about war being implicit in the resolution we're discussing. However, it's not an absolute green light.
(c) The constitutional powers of the President as Commander-in-Chief to introduce United States Armed Forces into hostilities, or into situations where imminent involvement in hostilities is clearly indicated by the circumstances, are exercised only pursuant to (1) a declaration of war, (2) specific statutory authorization, or (3) a national emergency created by attack upon the United States, its territories or possessions, or its armed forces.
Now I assume we can all accept the resolution we're debating is a statutory authorization, not specific, but a statutory authorization all the same. 'Force' is less specific than 'war; afterall.
Given that (and putting the generality of 'force' as compared to 'war' and the requirement for 'specific' statutory authorization to one side for now), the President;
... in every possible instance shall consult with Congress before introducing United States Armed Forces into hostilities or into situation where imminent involvement in hostilities is clearly indicated by the circumstances, and after every such introduction shall consult regularly with the Congress until United States Armed Forces are no longer engaged in hostilities or have been removed from such situations.
So, one could argue this both ways. The authoprisation of use of force could be seen as a specific green light for war, or as a green light to prepare for war and consult an d report to Congress. I'm not a lawyer. If I was I'd have to eat arsenic.
Anyway, hi dubla! How you doing? So, what do you think of neo-conservatives then?