ISIS

President Obama AUMF for ISIS War Almost Ready

White House says AUMF would be limited to three years and only allow specific kinds of deployments, but covers ISIS and "associated forces."

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Air strike in Iraq
CBS

Half a year after U.S. military operations against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) began, the White House is on the verge of submitting legislation that would explicitly authorize the war on ISIS and "associated forces." Currently the White House claims military operations in Iraq and Syria are covered by the authorizations for the use of military force (AUMFs) against Al-Qaeda and "associated forces" passed in 2001 and against Iraq passed in 2002. As in previous instances where President Obama authorized the use of military force or wanted to, like Libya and Syria, the president has argued he doesn't need specific authorization for the ISIS campaign.

The White House describes the proposed ISIS AUMF as a limited one, as Bloomberg View reports:

The president's AUMF for the fight against Islamic State would restrict the use of ground troops through a prohibition on "enduring offensive ground operations," but provide several exemptions. First, all existing ground troops, including the 3,000 U.S. military personnel now on the ground in Iraq, would be explicitly excluded from the restrictions. After that, the president would be allowed to deploy new military personnel in several specific roles: advisers, special operations forces, Joint Terminal Attack Controllers to assist U.S. air strikes and Combat Search and Rescue personnel.

The AUMF would also repeal the Iraq AUMF and expire after three years, into the term of the next president. There's no guarantee Congress will pass the AUMF the White House wants, but given the president's previous comments, that's no guarantee the military operations in Iraq and Syria won't continue. In 2011 the Congress didn't pass any bill authorizing the mission in Libya, but its failure to pass a bill specifically prohibiting the military operations in Libya by defunding them meant they continued absent explicit Congressional authorization.

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  1. Laying the groundwork for ISIS 2.0.

    1. Don’t worry. We’ll simply arm ISIS 1.0 to fight them.

      1. Or more likely, ISIS 3.0.

  2. Okay, so we go and destroy ISIS. We can do that. What happens next?

    1. The Arab Street gets angry?

      1. We destroy them, too? I guess it’s destruction all around. We used to have diplomacy, but now our diplomats are all buffoons.

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  4. “The AUMF would also repeal the Iraq AUMF and expire after three years, into the term of the next president. There’s no guarantee Congress will pass the AUMF the White House wants, but given the president’s previous comments, that’s no guarantee the military operations in Iraq and Syria won’t continue.”

    Personally, I’d rather we didn’t get involved on the ground with ISIS.

    That being said, if this AUMF repeals the Iraq AUMF and sunsets in three years, I might support it for that reason, alone.

    I’d anticipate plenty of Republican opposition to such an AUMF specifically becasue it replaces the Iraq AUMF and sunsets.

    If only they’d sunset the post-9/11 AUMF against terrorists–but Barack Obama is still having too much fun washing his bloody hands in that.

  5. the president would be allowed to deploy new military personnel in several specific roles: advisers, special operations forces, Joint Terminal Attack Controllers to assist U.S. air strikes and Combat Search and Rescue personnel.

    “We’ll *deem* them ‘advisers’.”

  6. AUMF — Very powerful.

  7. Why bother? How many in Congress will have the temerity to oppose this (even if they might have back in the summer) now that our involvement in the war has been a fait accompli for months? Taking a “I’ll bomb whoever I want, because FYTW, and maybe if I get around to it I’ll come ask for authorization, but I really don’t have to” approach really isn’t any better than not getting the authorization at all.

    1. Hawks will oppose it for not going far enough.

      There was plenty of Republican opposition to what Obama did in Libya–specifically because he wasn’t putting troops on the ground.

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