7 September 2013 — Moon of Alabama
While U.S. citizens are calling their representatives to vote against AIPAC pressure and against a war on Syria and Iran the really problematic vote is more likely to happen in the Senate.
The Obama administration asked the Senate for an Authorization to Use Military Force (AUMF) in Syria over an alleged chemical weapons attack. That AUMF was already worded incredibly wide and would have allowed the president to wage unlimited war over all the Middle East and beyond.
But the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, which was first to consult over the AUMF, partially made the already wide language of the Obama draft AUMF even wider and worse. It effectively surrenders all war powers to the office of the president.
While on first sight the body of the new AUMF (pdf) seems to limit the president’s ability to wage war, a huge “Easter egg” was put into the preambling Whereas clauses. Here are the three critical ones which have to be seen in combination:
- Whereas in the Syria Accountability and Lebanese Sovereignty Restoration Act of 2003 (Public Law 108–175), Congress found that Syria’s acquisition of weapons of mass destruction threatens the security of the Middle East and the national security interests of the United States;
- Whereas Syria’s use of weapons of mass destruction and its conduct and actions constitute a grave threat to regional stability, world peace, and the national security interests of the United States and its allies and partners;
- Whereas the President has authority under the Constitution to use force in order to defend the national security interests of the United States
That last whereas clause contradicts the constitution as well as the War Powers Resolution of 1973. It gives the president unlimited power to wage war anytime he finds the wobbly defined “national interest” of the United States endangered. It is huge blank check.
Why are the Senators on the verge of handing such power to the president? It makes life easier for them. It can push off their responsibility to decalre wars and blame the president when things go wrong. It is a dereliction of the Senate’s duty.
While the AUMF looks likely to be defeated in the House, a positive vote in the Senate on these new presidential powers would be taken by this and future presidents as a precedent and would support any future case in which the president wants to go to war without consulting with Congress.
The citizens of the United States should concentrate on defeating this Senate vote. Call your Senators before you call your House members and ask them to vote against this overarching claim of presidential powers.
This is even more important now as the case of the “chemical attack” in Syria looks more and more fraudulent. A number of former intelligence officers have written to the president to warn him that the case has not been made, that the provided intelligence is fraudulent and that the incident in Syria was, as we maintained from the beginning, a false flag incident created by Saudi, Turkish and Israeli services:
We regret to inform you that some of our former co-workers are telling us, categorically, that contrary to the claims of your administration, the most reliable intelligence shows that Bashar al-Assad was NOT responsible for the chemical incident that killed and injured Syrian civilians on August 21, and that British intelligence officials also know this.
Our sources confirm that a chemical incident of some sort did cause fatalities and injuries on August 21 in a suburb of Damascus. They insist, however, that the incident was not the result of an attack by the Syrian Army using military-grade chemical weapons from its arsenal. That is the most salient fact, according to CIA officers working on the Syria issue. They tell us that CIA Director John Brennan is perpetrating a pre-Iraq-War-type fraud on members of Congress, the media, the public – and perhaps even you.
That the incident near Damascus was a false flag committed by the insurgents in Syria is also the stated opinion of the Russian Federation.
The Israeli plan for Syria is to keep up a lengthy war of attrition between the insurgency and the Syrian government:
“This is a playoff situation in which you need both teams to lose, but at least you don’t want one to win — we’ll settle for a tie,” said Alon Pinkas, a former Israeli consul general in New York. “Let them both bleed, hemorrhage to death: that’s the strategic thinking here. As long as this lingers, there’s no real threat from Syria.”
Destruction of the infrastructure, economy and social fabric of Syria is their and their supporters aim.
The Israeli plan of endless war in Syira also seems to be the plan the United States government supports. Balance both sides, provide weapons and support the insurgents when they are week, reduce support when they are winning, keep the war ongoing as long as possible and with the most possible damage:
“I don’t expect huge, huge change on the day after on the ground,” said the official, who is traveling with Secretary of State John Kerry to a meeting here with European Union foreign ministers on the Middle East.
“That grinding war of attrition will continue and the regime’s manpower shortages will continue to grow, but I would not expect a breakthrough on the ground.”
The war on and in Syria could stop within a few weeks if the United States and its allies would stop delivering weapons, ammunition and other support to the insurgency and would seriously seek a negotiated solution. But the United States will not do so as long as its strategy for the destruction of Syria is working.
The Syrian government and its supporters must recognize this. It is not enough to keep fighting the insurgents. The war must be pushed onto those who support them. The Jordan King Abdullah needs to feel under pressure to finally close down the CIA insurgency training camps within his country. The Turkish prime minister Erdogan is already in political trouble. This trouble needs to be reenforced to induce him to change his aims and to shut down any and all support for the insurgency. There are ways and means, not necessarily neat ones, to achieve such.