Barack Obama has asked Congress for $500 million to train and arm rebels of the Free Syrian Army who seek to overthrow the government.
Before Congress takes up his proposal, both houses should demand that Obama explain exactly where he gets the constitutional authority to plunge us into what the president himself calls “somebody else’s civil war.”
Syria has not attacked us. Syria does not threaten us.
Why are we joining a jihad to overthrow the Syrian government?
President Bashar Assad is fighting against the al Qaida-linked al-Nusra Front and the even more extreme and vicious Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.
In training and arming the FSA, we are enlisting in a cause where our foremost fighting allies are Islamists, like those who brought down the twin towers, and a Sunni terrorist army that seeks to bring down the government we left behind in Baghdad.
What are we doing?
Assad is no angel. But before this uprising, which has taken 150,000 lives and created millions of refugees, Congressmen and secretaries of state regularly visited him in Damascus.
“There’s a different leader in Syria now,” cooed Hillary in 2011; “Many of the members of Congress of both parties who have gone to Syria in recent months have said they believe he’s a reformer.”
If we bring down Assad, what assurance do we have that the Free Syrian Army will prevail against the Islamists who have proven to be far more effective in the field?
Will we not be compelled to plunge into the subsequent civil war to keep ISIS and al-Qaida from taking power?
If Assad falls, there is also a high probability that Syria’s Christians will face beheadings and butchery at the hands of the fanatics.
And should martyrdoms and massacres begin with the fall of Assad because of our intervention, the blood of Christians will be on the hands of Barack Hussein Obama and the Congress of the United States.
Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin says he wants no part of Obama’s new wars. Democratic Sen. Tim Kaine rightly asserts that President Obama has no authority to take us into war in Syria or Iraq.
But where are the Republicans?
Absent an attack on U.S. citizens or vital interests, or an imminent threat of attack, Obama has no authority to initiate war. The Constitution places the power to authorize wars of choice exclusively with Congress.
James Madison and his colleagues were seeking to ensure against a rogue presidency of the kind that Obama has lately begun to conduct.
It is astonishing that Republicans who threaten to impeach Obama for usurping authority at home remain silent as he prepares to usurp their war powers — to march us into Syria and back into Iraq.
Last August, Americans rose as one to tell Congress to deny Obama any authority to attack Syria. Are Republicans now prepared to sit mute as Obama takes us into two new Middle East wars, on his own authority?
A congressional debate on war is essential not only from a legal and constitutional standpoint, but also a strategic one. For there is a question as to whether we are even on the right side in Syria.
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This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom