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May 24, 2013


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low-tech cyclist

What I want to know is, does the post-9/11 AUMF just continue indefinitely, or can Obama at some point say "the war on terror is over, the AUMF is inoperative and without effect now and forevermore" in a way that a potential Republican successor couldn't choose to ignore?

Or can only Congress close the books on an AUMF?

low-tech cyclist

Never mind - I found the answer. It's in Obama's speech, and I'm surprised none of the blog discussions of it I read even mention this. He says, "I look forward to engaging Congress and the American people in efforts to refine, and ultimately repeal, the AUMF's mandate."

I've got problems with this in any number of ways. First, it seems to me to be of dubious constitutionality for Congress to be able to hand over a chunk of its war-making powers to the Executive effectively in perpetuity.

Second, what happened when we won WWII? Did Congress have to pass a resolution saying that due to the surrender of the Axis powers, its declaration of war no longer had effect? Or could a future President still drop bombs on an Axis country someday if it got troublesome, using the WWII declaration of war as its authority for doing so?

Third, similarly the 2002 Iraq AUMF: I doubt that Congress ever passed any resolution that said in effect, "it's over, the Iraq AUMF is no longer in effect." Could a future President decide to intervene in Iraq's (apparently growing) internal troubles based on that AUMF?

Fourth, if a President can unilaterally withdraw the U.S. from a treaty (as Bush did with the ABM treaty in 2002), especially given that entering into a treaty requires the concurrence of 2/3 of the Senate, I don't see how he can't unilaterally declare a war to be over.

If Obama needs Congress' action to declare this conflict over, then the pieces just don't seem to fit together.

I hate to say it, but sometimes Obama defers just a little bit too much to a Congress that's largely in the control of crazies.


Good questions, l-tc. The Germans surrendered May 7-8-9, 1945,in Riems, but I can't find anything that confirms we promised not drop bombs on their heads afterward. According to a book (Savage Continent) I read recently, it took almost 10 years for the war to fully end in Europe.
BTW, it's 43 and drizzly here, w/frost tomorrow and snow in higher elevations. Welcome summer!


undoubtedly while Suits (show on USA Network) still focses on the "glamour" aspect of the law profession, i think it does a better job than most (ya, not really saying a whole lot there) of covering some of the drudgery and tedium of law.


Why is TPM reporting Ed Markey's tax deductions like they were a scandal?

And accordingly the comment thread is not kind to TPM.


Second, what happened when we won WWII?

Were peace treaties ever signed?

low-tech cyclist

oddjob - thanks for the links about the post-WWII peace treaties. Given the dates of the peace treaties, I suspect that one of the hindrances in signing a peace treaty with Germany was that East Germany was on the opposite side of the Cold War, and that once there was a reunited Germany, that piece of unfinished business could be taken care of.

But now that you've brought up peace treaties (which I'd overlooked, to be honest), that seems to be a real problem with an AUMF: if one country declares war on another, the war is formally ended with a peace treaty. But what's the AUMF equivalent? IS there an AUMF equivalent?


That's precisely what happened regarding Germany.

It makes as much sense to declare a war on terror as it does to declare a war on poverty or a war on drugs.

Sir Charles


I was told comments aren't working.


Sasquatch Music Festival at the Columbia Gorge wraps it up tonight -- haven't gotten any SOS messages from the *youngsters* there. Son's gang consists of probably a dozen. They got to see and hear Father John Misty and Elvis Costello among others in a great four day (+campsite set-up afternoon and straggle out tomorrow morning) line-up, reminding me of how old I am. Four days! No a-way. :)

Sir Charles

Just Typepad being capricious.


Sir C -- Capricious. Holiday weekend you know. Kick back time.

Adding to previous comment: I just found that those Sasquatching kidz also got to see the XX and Sigur Ros. Sheesh. While we're here doing yardwork and puttering.

Such is life.

Sir Charles

Father John Misty is going to be at a small club here (which is much more my style -- it's a 15 minute cab ride and only 900 people to tolerate) next week as are the Mountain Goats and the Dandy Warhols. I think my wife will be mystified if I decide that multiple concert dates are in my future.

That's a nice line up. I've seen Elvis five or six times over the years, starting first in Boston in 1979. (That one is really hard to top -- what an insanely intense show.)

It may all be moot, as I think I have to head out of town for a couple of days.


I think my wife will be mystified if I decide that multiple concert dates are in my future.

Probably only should you decide to dress hipster and go solo. :)






This one's for you oddjob -- the creator of the pink flamingo. A love story.

kathy a.

ok, that is a cute story, but seriously weird. or maybe i just have ptsd from the matching outfits mom made me and the sibs wear...


another test, since this thing seems to be out whenever i try to post.

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