News Releases

Israeli “Ceasefire” “PR Exercise” as Bombing Continues

The Jerusalem Post reports: “U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry blamed Hamas for powering through a ceasefire with Israel, brokered by the Egyptian government and accepted by Israel’s cabinet Tuesday morning.”

Amira Hass, a noted Israeli journalist, said this morning on “Democracy Now!” that: “Hamas feels it was a proposal brought up with Israel, without consultation with Hamas and brought up through the media and not brought up through negotiations with them. Everyone knows the leadership of Egypt right now is an enemy of Hamas. … They feel it is not meant to bring progress and change to the people in Gaza, but to marginalize them [Hamas] as a political movement.” (shortly after 15:00 mark)

Yair Rosenberg of the Israeli Archives tweeted Monday: “As written, ceasefire proposal is huge win for Netanyahu & Sisi: Hamas doesn’t get prisoners released or any changes to border arrangements.”

ELIZABETH MURRAY, emurray404 at aol.com
Available for a limited number of interviews, Murray served as deputy national intelligence officer for the Near East in the National Intelligence Council before retiring after a 27-year career in the U.S. government, where she specialized in Middle Eastern political and media analysis. Her writing appears at Consortium News.

Murray wrote the piece “Killing People as ‘Mowing the Lawn’: How Israeli Hardliners and Official Washington Dehumanize the People of Palestine” in 2012, during another major Israeli bombing of Gaza.

RANIA KHALEK, [in D.C. area] raniakhalek at gmail.com, @RaniaKhalek
Last week Khalek’s piece “ABC News tells viewers that scenes of destruction in Gaza are in Israel” helped compel ABC News anchor Diane Sawyer to issue a rare on-air apology. Calling it a “sham ceasefire,” Khalek tweeted this morning: “To media outlets reporting that Hamas rejected a ceasefire it was never consulted on, you’re complicit in a set-up.” Khalek’s recently wrote the piece “Israel Firing Experimental Weapons at Gaza’s Civilians, Say Doctors.”

VIJAY PRASHAD, Vijay.Prashad at trincoll.edu, @vijayprashad
Prashad is chair of South Asian history and professor of international studies at Trinity College in Hartford. He is also a columnist for Frontline (Chennai, India) and co-editor of Dispatches from the Arab Spring. He said today: “The ‘ceasefire’ offered by Egypt came through in a most idiosyncratic fashion. It was announced to the media, which is where Hamas leadership said that they saw it. Egypt had not conducted the kind of back channel negotiations with Israel and the Palestinian factions to ensure a ceasefire. In other words, this was not a ceasefire — it was an Egyptian offer.

“Israel said it would honor the ‘truce’ — largely as a PR exercise. Within hours it began its barrage on Gaza. A genuine ceasefire would have created a mechanism to contain violence and to investigate evidence of attacks (in other words, what if Hamas had accepted a ceasefire, but a rogue group fired a rocket — would that be a violation? There would have to be mechanism to ascertain if the ceasefire had been broken). A real ceasefire is necessary.”

Note: The Israeli government late last week dismissed a Hamas offer of a ceasefire. See Times of Israel: ‘Hamas official: Prisoners in exchange for ceasefire‘ and Ma’an news agency: ‘Hamas demands release of re-arrested prisoners before ceasefire.’ This was about Israel re-arresting Hamas members after they were released as part of the exchange for the Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit.

The response by Netanyahu: “Israel presses Gaza assault as Hamas rockets fly; Netanyahu rules out cease-fire” (Washington Post, July 10) and “Gaza ceasefire not on agenda: Netanyahu” (Press TV, July 14).

As’ad AbuKhalil on his blog has repeatedly noted that the New York Times on July 9 offered a truncated report: “In a televised speech from Qatar, the Hamas political chief, Khaled Meshal, blamed Israel for the conflict and rejected mediation efforts. ‘We receive calls from mediators from Arab and Western sides to broker a cease-fire,’ he said. ‘We say to those who ask us for a lull: Go back!’” But AbuKhalil writes that the “original rest of the sentence is: ‘go back to the root-cause and pressure Netanyahu.’”

See @accuracy list of resources on Israel/Palestine:
https://twitter.com/accuracy/lists/israel-palestine

Anti-Drone Grandmother Sentenced to One Year

ABC News is reporting today: “Israel Says It Downed Drone as Gaza Death Toll Climbs.” There was no confirmation as to whether the drone was armed. The Washington Post reported last week: “Israeli F-16 fighter jets, Apache attack helicopters and armed drones have hit more than 500 targets in the Gaza Strip over the past two days.” The Guardian reported late last month: “The U.S. has confirmed it is flying armed drones over Baghdad…”

“Democracy Now!” reports: “In New York, a peace activist and grandmother has been sentenced to a year in prison for her role in peaceful protests at a base where U.S. drones are piloted remotely. Mary Anne Grady Flores had been issued an order of protection aimed at keeping her away from Hancock Field Air National Guard Base after she participated in an act of civil disobedience there in 2012.

“Last year, Grady Flores says she attended another peace action, but did not participate, instead photographing it from the roadway, beyond what she believed was the base’s boundary. She was later told the base’s property extended into the road. On Thursday, Judge David Gideon of the DeWitt Town Court sentenced her to the maximum sentence of a year in prison for violating the protection order and fined her $1,000. In a courtroom packed with about 150 supporters, Grady Flores spoke about what she called the four perversions of justice in her case:

“Mary Anne Grady Flores: ‘The fourth perversion is the reversal of who is the real victim here: the commander of a military base involved in killing innocent people halfway around the world or those innocent people themselves, who are the real ones in need of orders of protection? So I, as a nonviolent grandmother and a caregiver to my own mother, as I prepare for jail, itself a perversion, I stand before you remorseful. I’m remorseful about my own country and its continued perpetuating of violence and injustice.’”

ELLEN GRADY, demottgrady6 at gmail.com
JUDITH BELLO, jb.papillonweb at gmail.com
Ellen Grady is with the Ithaca Catholic Worker and is the sister of Mary Anne Grady Flores. See “Hancock Air Base drone protester sentenced to 1 year in jail” in the Syracuse Post-Standard. See also the opinion piece “Stiff sentence for Hancock drone protester does not fit the crime” by Patrick O’Neill of the Fr. Charlie Mulholland Catholic Worker House in Garner, N.C. in the paper today.

Bello is with Upstate Drone Action. Video of the sentencing and other resources are available on their blog.

Grady and Bello note that other protesters will be tried for alleged violations. Jack Gilroy will be tried this week for alleged obstruction of governmental administration and Russel Brown later this month.

For further background, also see the Syracuse Peace Council website: peacecouncil.net.

Palestinian Fatalities Hit 100; Gaza Ark Ship Among Civilian Targets Hit

The Guardian reports: “Palestinian officials say 100 killed so far in conflict.” The Los Angeles Times reports that “the death toll topped 100 people.” There are no reports of Israeli fatalities.

EHAB LOTAYEF, [in Montreal] lotayef at gmail.com, @lotayef58
ROBERT NAIMAN, [in D.C.] naiman at justforeignpolicy.org, @naiman
MAHFOUZ KABARITI, [in Gaza] kabariti80 at hotmail.com, @GazaArk
Lotayef, Naiman and Kabariti are spokespersons for Gaza Ark, whose ship was attacked very early Friday morning. Gaza Ark is “part of the ongoing international Freedom Flotilla Coalition challenging the illegal and inhumane Israeli blockade of Gaza” imposed by Israel.

The group released a statement: “During an attack on the port of Gaza, the area came under fire from the Israeli Occupation forces. At about 2:00 a.m. local time Gaza Ark caught fire. The sustained Israeli assault prevented the civil defense fire brigade from extinguishing the blaze until approximately 3:30 a.m. … In the context of so many innocent civilian Palestinian deaths, the destruction of homes, hospitals, schools and other civilian infrastructure, the material damage to our project pales to insignificance. We are all thankful there was no loss of life in this particular attack, and we mourn with you all the senseless destruction and killings of Palestinians by the ongoing Israeli attacks.”

Lotayef said today: “The Israeli government’s rhetoric is that they are bombing to ensure security. But they are striking targets that obviously have nothing to do with security, like civilian homes, like infrastructure, like the port, like our ship. Israel has been targeting peaceful actions like Gaza Ark — we were attacked on the 29th of April as well — because Israel wants to suffocate Gaza, force people to leave. Israel withdrew its troops and settlers from Gaza to reduce the cost of occupation, not to end the occupation. Our project is focused on trying to get goods out of Gaza so the Palestinians there have a chance at interacting with the outside world. We try to export things like preserved food and Palestinian embroidery. But Israel doesn’t allow a port and is suffocating even fishing boats.”

Naiman — who is also policy director of Just Foreign Policy — recently wrote the article “Netanyahu’s War: What Is It Good For?” which states: “The government of Benjamin Netanyahu has launched a new war on Palestinians in Gaza, a war whose purported justifications make George W. Bush’s excuses for his illegal invasion of Iraq smell nice by comparison. So far, the United States, Netanyahu’s chief enabler, has been unwilling to stop the carnage, as it could easily do, because Washington hasn’t yet heard enough complaint from Americans not to use their tax dollars to kill children in Gaza.”

Pushback Against Obama War on Whistleblowers

The New York Times reports that federal employees “commuting to work in the nation’s capital are finding fresh food for thought as they wait for the bus — glossy six-foot posters with an open invitation to blow the whistle on bad stuff happening at the office.”

The Times notes that 13 of the billboards “have been posted along public thoroughfares amid Washington’s workspace warrens, where thousands of employees and contractors toil, many in secrecy.”

The six-foot billboards feature a message from Pentagon Papers whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg: “Don’t do what I did. Don’t wait until a new war has started, don’t wait until thousands more have died, before you tell the truth with documents that reveal lies or crimes or internal projections of costs and dangers. You might save a war’s worth of lives.”

Ellsberg has joined with NSA, State Department, EPA and Justice Department whistleblowers to help launch ExposeFacts, which is sponsoring the billboards. The new organization is part of the nonprofit Institute for Public Accuracy.

The money for the billboards was provided by small donations from more than 600 individuals who responded to an appeal from the online activism group RootsAction.org.

For information on the ExposeFacts mission “for whistleblowing, journalism and democracy,” go to ExposeFacts.org. To see the Ellsberg billboard, click here. For exact billboard locations, click here.

The following members of the ExposeFacts advisory and editorial boards are available for interviews:

ANN WRIGHT, microann at yahoo.com
Wright is a retired U.S. Army Reserve colonel, a 29-year veteran of the Army and Army Reserves, and a former State Department official. She helped re-open the U.S. embassy in Kabul in 2001. In 2003, she resigned in opposition to the then-impending invasion of Iraq. She has since co-authored the book Dissent: Voices of Conscience about whistleblowers.

MATTHEW HOH, mphoh at ciponline.org
Hoh, now a senior fellow at the Center for International Policy, served with the U.S. Marine Corps in Iraq and on U.S. Embassy teams in both Afghanistan and Iraq. He was subsequently appointed Senior Civilian Representative of the U.S. government for Zabul Province in Afghanistan. Five months into his year-long contract in 2009, Hoh resigned and became the highest-ranking U.S. official to publicly renounce U.S. policy in Afghanistan. Hoh was awarded The Ridenhour Prize for Truth-Telling in 2010.

He said: “It took years of involvement with a mendacious war policy, evidence of which was apparent to me as early as 2003, before I found the courage to follow my conscience. … It is not an easy or light decision for anyone to make, but we need members of our military, development, diplomatic and intelligence community to speak out if we are ever to have a just and sound foreign policy. … I trust ExposeFacts and its efforts will encourage others to follow their conscience and do what is right.”

NORMAN SOLOMON, solomonprogressive at gmail.com
Solomon is executive director of the Institute for Public Accuracy. He said today: “These billboards are urging people who work in Washington to consider the consequences of silence, conformity and fear — which the Bush and Obama administrations have tried so hard to inculcate and enforce. The words from Daniel Ellsberg are powerful because they connect a lack of truth with horrific consequences of wars waged and lives lost.”

Solomon added: “The consent of the governed is real only if it’s the informed consent of the governed. That’s what genuine democracy requires. That’s what the Ellsberg billboard is saying. … The billboard is just the beginning of major outreach for whistleblowing in the nation’s capital and around the country. Propelled by the knowledge, wisdom and courage of several dozen whistleblowers and independent journalists on the ExposeFacts advisory board, we’re moving ahead to challenge government policies that are antithetical to the First, Fourth and Fifth Amendments.

“Overall, we desperately need to nurture and propagate a steadfast culture of forthright whistleblowing. Whether the dire problems involve perpetual war, corporate malfeasance, climate change, institutionalized racism, patterns of sexual assault, toxic pollution or countless other ills, none can be alleviated without bringing grim realities into the light.”

Solomon is the author of a dozen books including War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death.

Mayors Call for Postal Banking; Big Bankers Hit Back

On July 7, U.S. News & World Report hosted a debate on postal banking. In “The Big Benefits of Postal Service Banking.” Senator Elizabeth Warren writes: “The Postal Service already has a presence in low-income and rural communities, and it could leverage that infrastructure to provide access to lower-cost basic banking services. This idea is a win-win: The Postal Service could offer affordable financial services for underserved families and, at the same time, shore up its own financial footing. The inspector general estimates the USPS can generate billions of dollars in new revenues by offering these services for modest fees.” In response, Richard Hunt, president and CEO of the Consumer Bankers Association cites the USPS’s losses of $46.2 billion dollars over the last eight years to conclude: “The Postal Service is more likely to burden our already strained federal budget than increase access for consumers.”

PostalReporter.com reported on July 3: “U.S. Conference of Mayors Endorse Postal Banking.”

At its June 20-23 annual meeting, the U.S. Conference of Mayors passed two resolutions in favor of United States Post Office-run banking services. One resolution calls for post office-based financial services as alternatives to predatory payday lending. The other resolution calls for a USPS-run infrastructure bank funded by private bank accounts like those held by millions of Americans until the 1960s.

MAYOR VIRG BERNARO, via Nicholas Soucy, nicholas.soucy at lansingmi.gov
Available for a limited number of interviews, Lansing Mayor Bernaro was primary sponsor of two postal banking resolutions passed at the 2014 United States Conference of Mayors annual meeting. The payday lending resolution reads, in part, “Approximately 12 million people turn to small-dollar, short-term ‘payday loans’ to make ends meet or cover emergency expenses … payday borrowers typically have no cash cushion, no savings, poor or no credit, and nowhere else to turn but payday lenders and other such financial predators … these predators charge exorbitant fees and usurious interest that result in effective annual percentage rates (APRs) averaging nearly 400 percent.”

MARC ARMSTRONG, marc at bankact.org,
Armstrong is co-founder of BankACT and the Public Banking Institute. He has said: “By offering inexpensive financial services, the USPS can help drive out financial predators, restoring billions of dollars to low-income neighborhoods at no cost to taxpayers … BankACT invites all mayors and other elected officials to take a stand with us on this trillion-dollar issue.”

See also: “Postal Service Crisis Brought on by Bizarre Law.”

“Little Humanitarianism” in Obama Immigration Plan

The Guardian reports “Senate grills panel on child immigration crisis.”

AP reports: “Obama is resisting calls to visit the border during his two-day fundraising trip to Texas, where he arrives late Wednesday afternoon. Instead, Obama will hold a meeting hundreds of miles away in Dallas to discuss the crisis with faith leaders and Texas officials, including Republican Gov. Rick Perry.

“Obama’s trip comes one day after he asked Congress for $3.7 billion in emergency spending to get more resources to the border.”

MAEGAN ORTIZ, mala at mamitamalamedia.com, @mamitamala
Los Angeles-based independent journalist and organizer, Ortiz contributes to a number of media outlets and publishes VivirLatino. She recently wrote “Why $3.7 Billion is Not Humanitarianism for Unaccompanied Minors at the Border” which states, “There is little humanitarianism in that $3.7 billion. According the White House $1.8 billion of that will go to Health and Human Services to provide care for the children. It seems that a portion of that is dedicated to free up more money from Border Patrol. … The rest of the $3.7 billion is specifically for deterrence, enforcement and ‘foreign cooperation’. …

“Deterrence means ‘increased detainment and removal of adults with children and increased immigration court capacity to speed cases.’ For an administration that has always claimed that keeping families together is a priority, there is not one line item to actually make this a possibility in the case of these unaccompanied minors. … Enforcement means according to the Office of Management and Budget that the $879 million will be used for ‘the detention, prosecution, and removal of apprehended undocumented families.’ ‘$109 million would provide for immigration and customs enforcement efforts, including expanding the Border Enforcement Security Task Force program, doubling the size of vetted units in El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras, and expanding investigatory activities by ICE [Immigrations and Customs Enforcement] Homeland Security Investigations.’

“In other words this money is intended to have a chilling effect reaching far beyond just these children. It really is an expansion of border enforcement in general as was outlined in the often praised ‘compromise’ bill that passed in the Senate last summer. …

“While $64 million is being put into adding more immigration judges to expedite removal proceedings and expanding legal representation for children in proceedings, there are also allocations that have a direct impact in Central America. ’295 million would support efforts to repatriate and reintegrate migrants to Central America’. Meaning more money is being spent to send people back rather than making sure people here receive due process.”

TODD MILLER, toddmiller70 at hotmail.com
Miller is author of Border Patrol Nation: Dispatches from the Front Lines of Homeland Security. He said today: “The border enforcement regime that is in place on the U.S. border with Mexico is anything but lax. It is the most massive concentration of agents and resources that we have ever seen in the history of the United States. Never before have there been so many walls, high-powered cameras and radar, implanted motion sensors, and drones. And never before has there been an incarceration and deportation apparatus attached to this that can imprison up to 34,000 people every day, and forcibly expel an average of 400,000 people a year from the country. This does not need another cent dedicated to it. The crisis of 52,000 unaccompanied Central American children arriving to our border is correctly a ‘humanitarian’ one, and they need to be treated like refugees, not criminals. A more long-term answer to this crisis requires a much more holistic debate — which includes an honest discussion of free trade and neoliberal economic policies in Central America, and the impacts of the U.S. sponsored drug war in the region.”

Ellsberg Billboards Urge Whistleblowing in DC: “Tell the Truth with Documents”

In an unprecedented push for whistleblowing in the nation’s capital, the new organization ExposeFacts announced today that 13 billboards have gone up near Capitol Hill, the Justice Department, the White House, the Government Accountability Office, the Defense Intelligence Agency, the State Department, a popular bookstore at Dupont Circle and other prominent locations.

The six-foot billboards display a message from Pentagon Papers whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg: “Don’t do what I did. Don’t wait until a new war has started, don’t wait until thousands more have died, before you tell the truth with documents that reveal lies or crimes or internal projections of costs and dangers. You might save a war’s worth of lives.”

Ellsberg is a member of the advisory board of ExposeFacts, which is encouraging whistleblowers to “disclose information that citizens need to make truly informed decisions in a democracy.” He joined with NSA, State Department, EPA and Justice Department whistleblowers to help launch the new organization, which is part of the nonprofit Institute for Public Accuracy.

ExposeFacts “aims to shed light on concealed activities that are relevant to human rights, corporate malfeasance, the environment, civil liberties and war,” the group says. The ExposeFacts.org site features the whistleblower submission system known as “SecureDrop,” provided by the Freedom of the Press Foundation.

To see the billboard, click here.

For details on locations of the billboard, click here.

“Netanyahu Government Knew Teens Were Dead as it Whipped up Racist Frenzy”

MAX BLUMENTHAL, [in NYC], maxjblumenthal at gmail.com, @MaxBlumenthal
Available for a limited number of interviews, Blumenthal is author of the book Goliath: Life and Loathing in Greater Israel. He just wrote the piece “Netanyahu government knew teens were dead as it whipped up racist frenzy,” which states: “From the moment three Israeli teens were reported missing last month, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the country’s military-intelligence apparatus suppressed the flow of information to the general public. Through a toxic blend of propaganda, subterfuge and incitement, they inflamed a precarious situation, manipulating Israelis into supporting their agenda until they made an utterly avoidable nightmare inevitable.

“Israeli police, intelligence officials and Netanyahu knew within hours of the kidnapping and murder of the three teens that they had been killed. And they knew who the prime suspects were less than a day after the kidnapping was reported.

“Rather than reveal these details to the public, Israel’s Shin Bet intelligence agency imposed a gag order on the national media, barring news outlets from reporting that the teens had almost certainly been killed, and forbidding them from revealing the identities of their suspected killers. The Shin Bet even lied to the parents of the kidnapped teens, deceiving them into believing their sons were alive.

“Instead of mounting a limited action to capture the suspected perpetrators and retrieve the teens’ bodies, Netanyahu staged an aggressive international public relations campaign, demanding sympathy and outrage from world leaders, who were also given the impression that the missing teens were still alive.

“Meanwhile, Israel’s armed forces rampaged throughout the occupied West Bank and bombarded the Gaza Strip in a campaign of collective punishment deceptively marketed to Israelis and the world as a rescue mission.”

On the Ground in Gaza and Israel

The Guardian reports today: “Israel steps up Gaza offensive and prepares for possible ground invasion.”

The Israeli magazine +972 reports in “Tariq Abu Khdeir wasn’t the first and he won’t be the last” that “Israel has detained over 7,000 Palestinian children over the past 12 years. Many of them report beatings, abuse and a denial of rights by security forces. It’s time to put things in the wider context. The detention and abuse of Palestinian children by Israeli security forces has, for a change, been all over the international news media. Unfortunately, it took the severe beating of a 15-year-old boy who happens to have American citizenship for that to happen.” See video.

MAHMOUD ABURAHMA, [in Gaza], mahmoud at mezan.org
Communications and international relations director for the Al Mezan Centre for Human Rights in Gaza, AbuRahma recently wrote “Understanding Israel’s Actions,” which states: “It is essential that U.S. citizens understand that this conflict should not continue to be viewed as a symmetrical one any more. When they do not hear about it, there are vicious violations of international law against Palestinians every day; including closures/blockades, settlement activities (population transfer on our land), displacement, killings, detention and torture.”

JOE CATRON, [in Gaza], joecatron at gmail.com
A freelance writer, English teacher and activist living in Gaza, Catron is involved with the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement, which advocates using people-driven economic pressure on Israel to assert rights for Palestinians. He is regularly tweeting at @jncatron.

YOUSEF AL-HELOU, [currently in Britain, may be in Gaza in a few days] al-helou.y at hotmail.com, @YousefAlhelou
Yousef Al-Helou is the Gaza-based correspondent for The Real News and a freelance journalist. He reported last week: “Is Israel Preparing New Military Offensive against Gaza?” He just completed his masters in journalism at Oxford University and is trying to get back into Gaza.

LIA TARACHANSKY, [in Israel] lia at therealnews.com, @liatarachansky
Tarachansky is a Jaffa-based filmmaker and the Israel-Palestine correspondent for The Real News. Her films include “On the Side of the Road” about the origins of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in 1948.

Her most recent report is “Army Violently Stops African Refugees Trying to Leave Israel.” While the recent video of Israeli’s chanting “Death to the Arabs” has begun recieving some attention, Tarachansky has been attempting to draw attention to this for some time. See her report of last year: “Israel’s New Generation of Racists.”

CINDY CORRIE, cindy at rachelcorriefoundation.org
CRAIG CORRIE, craig at rachelcorriefoundation.org
Cindy and Craig are the parents of Rachel Corrie, who was killed eleven years ago by Israeli troops in Gaza. Together, Cindy and Craig founded Rachel Corrie Foundation for Peace and Justice. Craig Corrie last year wrote the piece “Ten Years on I Want Answers for my Daughter Rachel Corrie.” They were last in Gaza in November 2012 as Operation Pillar of Cloud began. They recently spent three weeks in Israel and the West Bank — May and June — at the Israeli Supreme Court for the hearing in Rachel’s case which continues and traveled throughout the area for two weeks. They were denied entry by Israel into Gaza through Erez but continue to be in contact with people there.

Key Author of War Powers Resolution: “Attack on Iraq Would Violate Constitution”

The Nation writes: “Left-Right Coalition of 80 House Members Wants Congress to Check and Balance Iraq Intervention.”

PAUL FINDLEY, findley1 at frontier.com
Available for a limited number of interviews, Findley served as a member of United States House of Representatives for 22 years. He was a key author of the War Powers Resolution and a leader in securing its enactment by overriding the veto of President Richard Nixon. He is also the author of six books. The federal building in Springfield, Ill. is named for him. He said today: “Just as with threats to attack Syria last year, an attack on Iraq and/or Syria today would violate the Constitution and the War Powers Resolution. As with any president, he [President Obama] commits an impeachable offense if he does not follow the Constitution. Some observers misread a section of the War Powers Resolution as giving the president 60 days to make war without a declaration from Congress. The section cited actually limits even war making in the event of an attack upon the United States, its territories, or armed forces, which is not the case in either Iraq or Syria. In my view, a tight rein on presidential war making is more important today than ever before.” Last year Findley wrote the piece “Obama has no Authority to Attack Syria.”

FRANCIS BOYLE, fboyle at illinois.edu
Boyle, who has worked with Findley for many years, is a professor at the University of Illinois College of Law and author of Tackling America’s Toughest Questions. He said today: “President Obama has now incrementally introduced about 800 U.S. troops armed for combat into Iraq in three stages, each without Congressional authorization, which clearly violates the terms of the War Powers Resolution. This is precisely what the War Powers Resolution was intended to prevent — another incremental military escalation along the lines of the Vietnam War. The Obama administration has also threatened to bomb Syria as well as Iraq, either one of which would violate the War Powers Clause of the Constitution as well as the War Powers Resolution. It is not legitimate for the president — or members of Congress — to make de facto arrangements that violate the Constitution and the War Powers Resolution.”

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