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Five years too late, Congress remembers the Constitution.

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Message Ed Martin

An article from the Boston Globe is headlined: Bush Plan for Iraq Would Be a First.  No OK From Congress Seen; Constitutional Issues Raised.  Its not dated March of 2003, when that kind of resistance to Bush might have done some good and been an entirely accurate description of Bush's attack on Iraq.  Its dated Friday, January 25, 2008, and is about, of all things, Congress' resistance to Bush defending Iraq from attack.  Exactly the opposite of what Congress allowed him to do in 2003.

While both are unconstitutional, Congress says its OK for Bush to attack Iraq but not OK for him to defend it.  Go figure.

To correct the article, the current Bush plan for Iraq is not a first, his declaring war on Iraq with a "preemptive" attack was a first.

Once again, Bush is planning to take unilateral action on Iraq without the approval of Congress.  Only this time, he's planning on defending Iraq from attack, instead of attacking Iraq.  Congress is getting all bent out of shape about it and has just now, five years too late, remembered the Constitution that prohibits both attacking and defending Iraq from attack without Congressional approval.  The irony is only exceeded by the hypocrisy.

Representative Dana Rohrabacher, Republican, California: "We are here to fulfill the constitutional role established by the founding fathers.  It is not all in the hands of the president and his appointees.  We play a major role."

Gee whiz, such thunderous rumblings, such rectitude, such sanctimoniousness, such righteousness.  Where the hell were you in March, 2003 when Bush attacked Iraq?  When it would have saved a million innocent lives, 4000 US soldiers, two trillion in wasted expense?  You weren't there then and your hypocrisy is not needed now.  Pounding on the table now will not undo what you've allowed to be done.

Well, he's right and wrong about what he said.  He's right in that Congress has played a major role in ensuring that it IS all in the hands of the president and his appointees.  As a result of that, he's wrong that it is not all in the hands of the president and his appointees.  It is.  He's seen to that.

Remember that the resolution that Bush used as his excuse to attack Iraq only authorized him to use military force against Iraq to DEFEND the United States  Iraq never attacked the US, so the conditions necessary to use military force never came about.  But, he declared war and attacked, anyway.  And Congress blithely ignored the Constitutional provision that only Congress can declare war.

Congress is blind to the fact that they are outraged about Bush's unconstitutional act of making treaties with Iraq, now, that is the result of Congress allowing Bush to make the unconstitutional act of war in the first place.

From the article: "Most of the attention has instead focused on whether the pact could make it more difficult for the United States to withdraw from Iraq after Bush leaves office."

The pact cannot make it more difficult.  Withdrawing from Iraq is not difficult.  It is the reverse of the process that got the US military into Iraq.  Ships, planes, troop carriers and trucks got them there and they can get them out.  Withdrawal from Iraq is not a matter of difficulty with pacts, politics, economics, beliefs, ideology or whether you're a Democrat or a Republican.  Withdrawal is a matter of abiding by the Constitution, the law of the land.  The law that Congress has so suddenly become enamored of.

It says the attack on and occupation of Iraq is illegal, just as it says that Congress must approve treaties with foreign countries.  Congress, whether Democratic or Republican, carefully picks and chooses when to stand up and squawk loudly about their power being ignored.  But, they only do it when it doesn't matter, when they lose to George Bush, again, it won't really make any difference.

Bush's relationship with Congress is like the guy who told the husband to stand in a circle the guy drew on the ground while the guy raped the husband's wife.  When the rapist left, the husband said that the guy wasn't really so tough, after all.  The wife asked what he meant.  The husband pointed out that he had stepped out of the circle twice and the guy didn't even notice.

Congress is just now, very tentatively, putting a toe out of the circle, ready to be withdrawn instantly if Bush looks around, in hopes that Bush won't notice, while he rapes the United States and Iraq, and is preparing for Iran to bend over.


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Ed Martin is an ordinary person who is recovering from being badly over-educated. Born in the middle of the Great Depression, he is not affiliated with nor a member of any political, social or religious organization. He is especially interested in (more...)
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