ACTION ALERT: House to Vote on Syria War Powers Resolution Today!

March 8th, 2023 - by Dave DeCamp / & Robert Naiman & The Democratic National Committee




ACTION ALERT: Remove US Troops from Syria!
Ask your Representative to Support H. Con. Res. 2
Dave DeCamp / 


(March 8, 2023) — The House is expected to vote on a War Powers Resolution this Wednesday introduced by Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) that would order President Biden to withdraw all US troops from Syria.

Americans can contact their representatives and urge them to support the resolution (H.Con.Res.21). Click here to find your representative, or call the House switchboard operator at (202) 224-3121.

The US currently has about 900 troops stationed in eastern Syria and backs the Kurdish-led SDF in the region, allowing the US to control about one-third of the country. Gaetz’s resolution would give President Biden 180 days to end the US military occupation, which is opposed by Damascus.

The text of H.Con.Res.21 reads: “That, pursuant to section 5(c) of the War Powers Resolution (50 USC. 1544(c)), Congress directs the President to remove the United States Armed Forces from Syria by not later than the date that is 180 days after the date of the adoption of this concurrent resolution.”

Gatez initially introduced a resolution that gave the president only 15 days to withdraw from Syria. The second resolution was introduced to gain more support for the effort as the longer timeline makes it more likely that Democrats will vote in favor of the bill.

In July 2022, the House voted on a proposed amendment to the 2023 National Defense Authorization Act introduced by Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-NY) that would have cut all funds for the US presence in Syria within one year if President Biden didn’t get authorization for the war. The amendment failed, but it received support from about 60% of House Democrats. According to the House Clerk, 130 Democrats voted in favor, while only 25 Republicans supported the amendment.

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Gen. Mark Milley made a rare visit to Syria over the weekend to justify the continued US presence. He said the fight against ISIS was worth the risk of keeping the operation going. But the Syrian government and its allies are also sworn enemies of ISIS, so if the US withdrew from the country, the fight against the terror group would continue. The occupation is also part of Washington’s economic war against Damascus, as the US controls the area where most of Syria’s oil fields are located.

US operations in Syria always risk sparking a wider war as Russia also has a presence in the country, something Gaetz pointed out when he introduced the initial resolution. “The risk of an accident or miscalculation or just misuse of authority could lead to direct kinetic conflict between the United States and Russia in Syria. And we ought to really think about whether or not that risk is worth whatever it is we’re fighting for in Syria,” he said.

Syria War Powers Vote Wednesday:
What Was Promised in the Democratic Platform?
Robert Naiman

The House is expected to vote Wednesday on a concurrent Syria War Powers Resolution which would require the removal of US military forces from Syria within six months unless Congress passes specific statutory authorization for their presence, as required by Article I of the Constitution and the War Powers Resolution of 1973.

Given that roughly half of the Representatives in the House identify as members of the Democratic Party, and that every House Democrat belongs to the Democratic National Committee, which approves the Democratic Platform every four years before the next Presidential election, it’s a great time to remind ourselves what we were promised in the Democratic Platform about this.

Robert Naiman is a policy analyst, researcher, writer, and activist. He is formerly the policy director at Just Foreign Policy, and is the president of the board of directors at progressive news organization Truthout

“Ending Forever Wars”
Democratic National Committee
“Democrats know it’s time to bring nearly two decades of unceasing conflict to an end.” […]

“Democrats will deliver on this overdue commitment to end the forever wars, and we will do it responsibly — setting priorities, leading with diplomacy, protecting ourselves from terrorist threats, enabling local partners, and bringing our troops home.” […]

“Democrats will not only end the wars that have cost so much American blood and treasure — we will apply their lessons. We will only use force when necessary to protect national security and when the objective is clear and achievable — with the informed consent of the American people, and where warranted, the approval of Congress.

That is why we will work with Congress to repeal decades-old authorizations for the use of military force and replace them with a narrow and specific framework that will ensure we can protect Americans from terrorist threats while ending the forever wars.”

“Rather than occupy countries and overthrow regimes to prevent terrorist attacks, Democrats will prioritize more effective and less costly diplomatic, intelligence, and law enforcement tools.

The last time US military withdrawal from Syria was seriously considered, the Pentagon conceded that they could withdraw from Syria in four months. So six months is plenty of time for the Pentagon to get out of Syria or for Congress to pass an authorization for the use of military force in Syria, as required by Article I of the Constitution and the War Powers Resolution of 1973.

If Congress can’t pass an authorization for the use of force in Syria, then US troops shouldn’t be there. Let’s act to support “the rule of law.” Let’s enforce Article I of the US Constitution. At long last.

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