No-Fly Won't Fly Constitutionally
by Ron Paul: Buying
Friends Creates More Enemies
to Ron Paul
Last week we
once again heard numerous voices calling for intervention in Libya.
Most say the US should establish a no-fly zone over
Libya, pretending that it is a benign, virtually cost-free action,
and the least we could do to assist those trying to oust the Gaddafi
regime. Let us be clear about one thing: for the US to establish
a no fly zone over all or part of Libya would constitute
an act of war against Libya. Establishing any kind of military presence
in the sovereign territory of Libya will require committing troops
to engage in combat against the Libyan air force, as well as anti-aircraft
systems. The administration has stated that nothing is off the table
as they discuss US responses to the unrest. This sort of talk is
alarming on so many levels. Does this mean a nuclear strike is on
the table? Apparently so.
In this case,
I would like to make sure we actually follow the black letter of
the law provided in the Constitution that explicitly grants Congress
the sole authority to declare war. This week I will introduce a
concurrent resolution in the House to remind my colleagues and the
administration that Congress alone, not the president, decides when
to go to war. It is alarming how casually the administration talks
about initiating acts of war, as though Article 1 Section 8 of the
Constitution does not exist. Frankly, it is not up to the President
whether or not we intervene in Libya, or set up no-fly
zones, or send troops. At least, it is not if we follow the Constitution.
Even by the loose standards of the War Powers Resolution, which
cedes far too much power to the president, he would have no authority
to engage in hostilities because we have not been attacked
not by Gaddafi, and not by the rebels. This is not our fight. If
the administration wants to make it our fight, let them make their
case before Congress and put it to a vote. I would strongly oppose
such a measure, but that is the proper way to proceed.
questions aside, Congress also needs to consider the interests of
the American people. Again, we have not been attacked. Whatever
we may think about the Gaddafi regime, we must recognize that the
current turmoil in Libya represents an attempted coup détat
in a foreign country. Neither the coup leaders nor the regime pose
an imminent threat to the United States and therefore, as much as
we abhor violence and loss of life, this is simply none of our business.
How can we commit our men and women in uniform to a dangerous military
operation in Libya when they swore an oath to protect and defend
the Constitution? We must also understand that our intervention
will undermine the legitimacy of whatever government prevails in
Libya. Especially if it is a bad government, it will be seen as
our puppet and further radicalize people in the region against us.
These are terrible reasons to put our soldiers lives at risk.
need to consider the economic cost. We dont have the money
for more military interventions overseas. We dont have the
money for our current military interventions overseas. We have to
rely on the Feds printing presses and our ability to borrow
from China to fund these wars. That alone should put an end to any
discussion about getting involved in Libyas civil war.
the Ron Paul File
Paul is a Republican member of Congress from Texas.
Best of Ron Paul