Robert Naiman / Just Foreign Policy & MoveOn & Code Pink & Friends Committee on National Legislation – 2014-08-09 00:17:37
ACTION ALERT: Tell Obama: Don’t Resume Bombing Iraq
Robert Naiman / Just Foreign Policy & MoveOn
(August 8, 2014) — President Obama should explain clearly why his decision to order airstrikes in Iraq without Congressional authorization was Constitutional, say clearly what he believes is the legal limit of his authority, and seek explicit Congressional authorization for further military action.
Members of Congress should say whether they support President Obama’s decision to conduct airstrikes in Iraq, whether they believe he should have sought Congressional authorization, and whether they believe he should seek authorization now for further military action.
Media should prominently explore whether the President had legal authority to order airstrikes in Iraq, what the limit of his legal authority to order airstrikes is, and what Members of Congress believe is the limit of his legal authority to order airstrikes without Congressional authorization.
Urge the Administration, Congress, and the media to respect and uphold the Constitutional restriction against the use of force without Congressional authorization — a key protection against unwise and unnecessary wars of choice — by signing our petition at MoveOn:
When President Obama gave a speech to the nation about his plans to conduct air strikes in Iraq, he failed to clearly explain why his decision to order airstrikes in Iraq without Congressional authorization was Constitutional. 
The House overwhelmingly passed legislation introduced by Rep. Jim McGovern requiring the President to come to Congress for authorization before using military force in Iraq.  Minority Leader Pelosi and almost all Democrats supported the legislation.  Before that, more than 100 Members of the House signed the bipartisan Barbara Lee-Scott Rigell letter insisting that the President come to Congress before using military force in Iraq. 
Members of Congress must speak up now demanding that there be Congressional authorization before any further military action. And major media, especially the New York Times and the Washington Post, must prominently address the question of whether the President has Constitutional authority to conduct airstrikes in Iraq and what the legal limit of his authority is.
Urge the Administration, Congress, and the media to comply with and uphold the Constitutional protections against unnecessary wars of choice by signing and sharing our petition:
Thanks for all you do to help hold US foreign policy accountable to the rule of law.
1. “‘Humanitarian Emergency’ Does Not Suspend the Constitution on War Powers,” http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-naiman/obama-iraq-air-strikes_b_5662055.html
The Dumb War: Bombing Is Not Humanitarian Aid!
Don’t Drag Us into Another War in Iraq!
(August 8, 2014) — After he called years of US military involvement in Iraq “the dumb war,” today President Obama authorized airstrikes on ISIS in Iraq. Our heads are spinning: we’re bombing Iraq — again.
Why does our President want to take sides and get involved in a civil war? The US is not the target of ISIS, but if we become involved, we will be. President Obama’s concerns about the Iraqi humanitarian crisis and the safety of US personnel can be solved without dropping bombs. Helping the besieged civilians in Iraq should be an orchestrated international effort, not carried out just by the US — the country that unleashed the sectarian turmoil in the first place. And if American personnel in Irbil or elsewhere in Iraq are in harm’s way, they should be immediately evacuated to a safe location.
Further US involvement will only make the situation worse. Learn more about the situation in Iraq in this Democracy Now segment with Phyllis Bennis of the Institute for Policy Studies. As she points out, it’s up to the Shi’ite Iraqi government — not the US government — to create a broad-based coalition that shows it is inclusive of the Sunni population, instead of alienating them and driving them to support ISIS.
This is the way wars are started. It’s a slippery slope where humanitarian missions are the cloak for military intervention. We can be a part of the solution this time, not the problem, but that won’t happen with bombs. We’ve been there, done that, and it didn’t work. The American people are sick of war and the Iraqi people have suffered enough from our military aggression.
Tell President Obama: Bombing is not humanitarian aid! Don’t drag us into another war in Iraq!
Dear President Obama,
We are staunchly opposed to any kind of US military intervention in Iraq. We’ve been there, done that, and it didn’t work. You yourself even called it a “dumb war.” The American people are sick of paying for war and the Iraqi people have suffered enough from our military aggressions. Yes, we should help people in need, by pulling together an international coalition to provide humanitarian aid. Providing food, water and shelter is one thing, but getting involved in Iraq’s sectarian conflict is something the American people will not support.
Iraq: Drop Food, NOT Bombs
Friends Committee on National Legislation
(August 8, 2014) — Today the United States began bombing Iraq again. Decades of US military intervention fomented the crisis in Iraq today, and more bombing will only mean more bloodshed and instability.
Over the past several years, a groundswell of grassroots opposition shut down the US plan to bomb Syria and led to the eventual withdrawal of US ground troops from Iraq. We need your support today to stop more US bombing in Iraq. Urge President Obama and Congress to drop food, not bombs, on Iraq.
Just two weeks ago, the House of Representatives passed H. Con. Res 105, calling on President Obama to seek explicit authorization before engaging in ‘sustained combat’ in Iraq. That was an important signal demonstrating Congress opposed more wars in the Middle East.
But in the wake of today’s crisis, most members of Congress speaking out have supported the US bombing of Iraq, despite the president not seeking explicit authorization before beginning these attacks.
That’s why your members of Congress and the administration need to hear from you.
There are peaceful ways the United States can help save lives in Iraq and the region. To begin, the United States can take these 5 steps:
Stop US bombing of Iraq, which will only result in more bloodshed and instability
Coordinate with the United Nations on evacuation efforts of Iraq’s Yazidi population trapped on Sinjar mountain, US personnel in Erbil and others fleeing for their lives.
Call for and uphold an arms embargo in Iraq and Syria. US arms and military assistance to the Iraqi government and Syrian rebel groups have only fueled the carnage.
Engage with United Nations on diplomatic efforts for a lasting political solution for Iraq and Syria.
Increase humanitarian aid. The US has a particular responsibility to generously contribute to catastrophic humanitarian crisis engulfing Iraq and the region.
Check back on our website for updates and more information. Thank you for all you do for peace,
Kate Gould, Legislative Associate, Middle East Policy.
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