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Donald Sensing
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No, sorry, Grim, your example does not apply because the Congressional power to declare was is sui generis. An enactment to declare war cannot be vetoed by the president because if Congress declares it, it is so according to the Constitution. But let me offer another example that I think is more fitting. The Constitution states that "all bills for raising revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives; but the Senate may propose or concur with Amendments as on other Bills." (Art. 1, Sec. 7). And let us assume that a president (President Jones) is absolutely convinced that a particular, new tax is critical to the economic health of the country. We'll call it The Critical Tax. So President Jones send over a resolution to the Congress that would effect the Critical Tax. It fail by 80-20 percent in the House and the Senate declines to propose another bill that would institute the Critical Tax. But President Jones simply directs the IRS to impose the tax anyway because, as he says, "In merely voting down my resolution, the Congress did not actually prohibit me from instituting the tax anyway." It is true that in ordinary legislation, the president can veto an enactment. But the power to declare war is not ordinary; it is Constitutionally specified. If the Congress votes down Obama's resolution, it has vetoed his request to make war. In no aspect of Congressional-Presidential jurisprudence, in all of American history, has a president ever assumed the right to declare that a failed bill that never reaches his desk will be enforced as law anyway. What you are saying is that there is really nothing there to vote down in the first place because the Congress has no real say in the matter. As I said, that's just Constitutional la-la land.
Toggle Commented Sep 2, 2013 on Uphold and Defend at BlackFive
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Or to take it to a very simple level: Teenage son to his father: "Dad, I want to borrow your car tonight to take it drag racing with some friends." Father: "I don't think I am going to agree to that." Son (thought bubble): "Well, he didn't say no so that means it's okay." Yeah, right.
Toggle Commented Sep 2, 2013 on Uphold and Defend at BlackFive
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LW, thank you for the link, and I thank all commenters for your collegial insights. One thing I did not say in the post is that the oath of commissioning is extablished by law (so is the enlistment oath, but a different law). It is 5 USC § 3331 - Oath of office. I disagree with Grim's comment, though, and here is why. Enactments of Congress (I do not mean puff things like declaring "Redheads Appreciation Week" and such) have the force of law. If the Congress votes down a Syria War resolution, then if the president goes ahead and orders the strikes anyway, he has essentially vetoed an enactment by Congress that is specifically delegated to the Congress by the Constitution. Obama would be (literally, in my view) vetoing Article One, Section Eight of the Constitution. I maintain that for Congress to actually vote NOT to declare war is in fact and should be in Constitutional law an actual prohibition of executive power to conduct the war. And make no mistake, a declaration of war against Syria is what Obama has asked for because that is what an AUMF is, Constitutionally speaking (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Declaration_of_war_by_the_United_States). To maintain that a vote not to authorize the strikes is somehow permission to go ahead anyway, since the vote didn't textually, specifically prohibit them, is to split hairs so fine they aren't even there. That would mean that: 1. The president sends a resolution to Congress to authorize him specified warmaking powers against a country. 2. Congress votes not to approve the president's request. 3. But that vote is actually the same as approving it because Congress neglected to add the words, "This war is specifically prohibited." Do you really want that to be how this country goes to war now or in the future? What is the difference between that and a president announcing out of the blue one day, "I have decided to bomb Lower Slobbovia. Congress has not prohibited it, so therefore it is legal." If a simple no vote on the president's request actually has no force of law, then we are in Constitutional la-la land.
Toggle Commented Sep 2, 2013 on Uphold and Defend at BlackFive
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I just don't see it. If the White House had threatened to expose the affair unless he testified thus, why would they have lowered the boom now? He is still going to testify and now has no reason to protect anyone in the administration. No, Chicago politicians know better: once you've got your hand on the other guy's throat, you neither relax nor squeeze harder. You just leave it be and accept their docile service evermore. I think that Krauthammer is just way off base here.
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You are right: this is completely plausible. However, I would rate it as unlikely for the following two reasons. 1. The NATO nations, except Canada (!), are broke. With the very possible imminent collapse of the Euro, NATO nations have every incentive to avoid expeditionary expenditures. I this reason alone obviates the possibility of Chapter 5 being successfully invoked by Turkey. 2. Angela Merkel and most of the rest of NATO's heads of state are more than aware of the basic facts of the Sunni/al-Qaeda grab for power in Syria, and are not going to bring down Assad to bring up the Islamists. They are also well aware that the bloody aftermath in Libya is not even an opening act for that would follow in Syria if the "resistance" topples Assad. NATO's countries are also much closer, literally and figuratively, to Russia; the weight of the Russian Bear's opposition will press much more heavily on Eur-NATO than us. I would add that NATO's Euro nations have almost no strategic "throw" to bring effective forces against Assad. At the minimum they would have to rail through Turkey while also forming naval forces off Syria (where only two Russian cruisers would form a no-cross line that not one Eur-NATO head of state would dare cross). The problem is that it is not implausible that our current president would be more than satisfied to see Assad replaced by Sunnis in Syria. If you think that makes no sense, then I would say you have the basic grasp of the essentials of Obama's foreign policy. All this is all more the reason for the United States to quit NATO's military pact.
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I used this photo as a background image for my posting of a Hymn for Memorial Day. http://www.senseofevents.blogspot.com/2012/05/hymn-for-memorial-day.html See this too, just as striking since it's of a military mother reaching to touch the gravestone of her KIA son: http://www.senseofevents.blogspot.com/2012/05/what-makes-this-day.html
Toggle Commented Jun 5, 2012 on Memorial Day 2012 at BlackFive
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At the risk of the cliche, this illustrates why the Vietnam syndrome is being played out in Afghanistan. The news becomes evermore glowing the higher up the chain of command from which it comes. Meanwhile, in the trenches, the troops just want their time to pass and to get home. "Victory" is word with neither context nor meaning there. There is nothing that US forces can do to make the ANA any good. This is one of those times that I hate being right. I wrote in July 2010, when Generals Petraeus and Mattis were appointed to their commands, they will fail (http://senseofevents.blogspot.com/2010/07/why-petraeus-wont-matter.html . They will fail not through lack of effort or of insight or because of poor planning and execution. One would be surprised if every operation and campaign they plan is executed much less than magnificently well. There is nothing that they carry with them into Afghanistan that will fail them, nor will they fail their troops. They will fail because COIN is a tactic, not a strategic objective, and the United States has no strategic objectives regarding Afghanistan. The generals will be conducting COIN for COIN's own sake, not really to achieve something else. As far any anyone can tell, President Obama's only national objective regarding Afghanistan is to pull American forces out by the end of next year. That's not a strategic objective. It's an admission of aimlessness. That the pullout date has been somewhat extended does not matter. The fact is that the Obama administration, like Bush's before it, does not know what it is trying to do in Afghanistan. So why did we invade to begin with? Because the attacks of 9/11, planned, funded and commanded inside Afghanistan, left us no choice. If the US was to defend itself, and importantly, to be seen as defending itself, it had to attack its enemy where the enemy was, and that meant going into Afghanistan. We hoped thereby to cut off the head of the snake by killing and isolating al Qaeda's high command from the most of the rest of its organization and allies around the world. In that we were significantly successful. However, we were (and are) like the proverbial dog chasing a car - once it catches it, what does it do with a mouthful of bumper? We did not know in 2002, and we do not know now.
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Gee, Deebow, stop sugar coating it. Tell us what you really think about The Won.
Toggle Commented Dec 14, 2011 on Just Shut Up, Moron.... at BlackFive
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Thanks for this. Like you, I am getting really and tired of Yon's bluster.
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Obama just said on TV (live) that Social Security has nothing to do with the all this.
Toggle Commented Sep 19, 2011 on Let's cut military retirement benefits at BlackFive
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Japan has never come to grips with the tens of millions of people it murdered in the 1930s and '40s, and by this time, it never will. http://senseofevents.blogspot.com/2010/08/hiroshima-day-world-council-of-churches.html
Toggle Commented Sep 6, 2011 on The atom bomb ended WWII.......right? at BlackFive
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The Soviet Union's entry into the war was almost irrelevant, actually. Soviet formations on the mainland did decimate Japanese defenders, but communications between Japanese forces and Tokyo were so broken down these attacks were hardly known by the Japanese High Council. I wrote a long post about The atom bombings and Japan's surrender last year, online at http://senseofevents.blogspot.com/2009/08/atom-bombings-and-japans-surrender.html Some factoids: 1. The atom bomb itself did not impel the Japanese to capitulate. As other have commented, by this time of the war, air raids that killed many tens of thousands were not uncommon. While the Japanese high council did understand that the atom bomb was an unstoppable weapon, well, so were the vast fleets of American bombers already pulverizing Japan's cities. 2. The most devastating weapon that B-29s dropped against Japan were sea mines to interdict Japanese ports approaches. More bomber sorties were flown for this purpose than to bomb cities. By the beginning of summer 1945, sea lines of communication to Japan from the mainland areas it occupied were so broken that the Japanese people were literally starving (Japan was not self-sufficient in food). 3. Japanese records show that the overriding fear of Japan's high council was the destruction of the emperor's office and line, and the most serious threat thereto was revolution by the Japanese people themselves. The American blockade was so punishing the people that Japan's internal security service, the Kempei Tai, had soberly concluded that revolution was becoming ever-more possible. Even the most hawkish of the council were petrified by this prospect, realizing that people who were literally starving could never be reasoned with to endure obediently to their deaths, especially as they watched their children suffer. The council also had no way to ensure that army units would remain loyal to the emperor once the people took to the streets - the soldiers were hungry, too. 4. Hence, the atom bombings provided an opening for a face-saving way to end the war. Petrified by the prospect of civil revolution, the high council could preserve its honor (as it understood it) by claiming that the atom bomb was a new weapon of such power that resistance was no longer preferable or possible. Not every member of the high council agreed even so. Finally, Emperor Hirohito himself broke the impasse, speaking directly to the high council, which had never been done before. 5. It was the very real threat of domestic revolution, not the Soviets' entry into the war nor even the pulverizing of Japan's cities by B-29s, that brought about the end of the war. The atom bomb was the high council's excuse, but not its reason. With America's covert assurance that they would neither abolish the emperor's office nor claim the imperial symbols as war prizes, surrender became the only guarantee that the national polity could continue. Hence it was less undesirable than continuing the war, which would have only invited more destruction and then revolution. More at the link I posted above.
Toggle Commented Sep 6, 2011 on The atom bomb ended WWII.......right? at BlackFive
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There was a raid into Abottabad during which an incomparable treasure trove of hard drives and documents was taken into American hands. As a bonus, Osama bin Laden was killed. Or kidnapped. Or whatever. Doesn't much matter. However, what does give some credibility to your hypothesis is that the body is missing. Presumably, there is an aircraft carrier captain who knows that it was (or was not?) dumped overboard from his vessel, along with at least a dozen other officers and selected crew who also know it was thrown into the sea - or who understand the cover and its urgency. As for the SEALs and crews of the Army's 160th SOAR who flew the mission, heck, they won't even tell you what they had for breakfast this morning, much less the breathing status of a body brought out of a mission objective. I also know from my own years on active duty that the Soviet Speznaz were fully adept at snatch missions and could completely immobilize the snatchee with the greatest of ease, using drugs. (Believe it or not, their favorite was/is pure grain alcohol, injecting into the victim's veins a dose, calculated on estimated body weight, that would make the snatchee pass out in just minutes. With no side effects. The Speznaz did have other, quicker and somewhat riskier drugs, though, and one would assume so do our boys.) But let's carry this conspiracy theory to the limit! Stipulating that all you propose is true ... DOES OBAMA KNOW? Or does he really think that OBL is chatting it up right now with Luca Brazzi? Think it couldn't happen? Remember that naval intelligence actually removed FDR from the distribution list of intercepted, decoded Japanese signals in the months before Pearl Harbor.
Toggle Commented May 7, 2011 on Because He's Not Dead Yet at Cobb
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They will "soldier on" until victory or until they die trying? Ka-ching! Let us give them their second wish.
Toggle Commented May 6, 2011 on Because He's Not Dead Yet at Cobb
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The Muslim Brotherhood is secular. The Green Bay Packers are a chamber orchestra. Barack Obama is apolitical. Exxon-Mobil is a toy manufacturer. Up is down. Light is dark. Welcome to Newspeak, Mr. Orwell.
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And there's no such thing as KP duty any more, anyway.
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The only people who have gone on the record with direct, by-name attribution about this non-issue are the ones stating plainly that there's no there, there. CBN is a joke and so is Stakelbeck's work. I am a retired Army officer who served as a principal staff officer of US Army CID Command. I was a member of the Oklahoma City Bomb Investigation Task Force (McVeigh) in 1995. I know something about how sensitive investigations are done. I posted on my blog why the report that five Muslim soldiers were arrested at Ft Jackson for plotting to poison the food supply there is simply bogus. 1. Fort Jackson Poison Plot - nothing there http://senseofevents.blogspot.com/2010/02/fort-jackson-poison-plot-nothing-there.html 2. Fort Jackson "plot": "never any threat, nothing credible" http://senseofevents.blogspot.com/2010/02/fort-jackson-plot-never-any-threat.html Stakelbeck's claim that a "source with intimate knowledge of the investigation," provided the site with information is simply false. Having handled, originated and worked with highly classified or sensitive information, I absolutely assure you that no one with "intimate knowledge" of the case has talked to the media. Such persons are very few in number and have no incentive or reason to do so and every reason not to, such as getting their careers ended. As well, a Columbia, S.C. law-enforcement officer "familiar with the reports" told The State newspaper "that there was no attempt made to poison any soldiers, adding that a rumor started when several disgruntled soldiers shot their mouths off late last year. There was never any threat, nothing credible, he insisted." Soldiers shooting off their mouths. Imagine. We on the right accuse the Left, with justification, that their operating principle seems to be, "the facts don't matter, the narrative is true." Is that your operating principle, too, Crush? Because that's what you're doing.
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IndieJones - so now I am the issue here? Wow. But to answer your question, I only registered with typepad Thursday evening. This is not the only blog i have left a comment about this case on. I also left a comment at CBN's page (which has not yet appeared) and a few others linked by Memeorandum. Is IndieJones your real name? If not, why are you using a pseudonym? I use my own name in full and link to my site where people can decide for themselves the credibility of my arguments. Why are you hiding? But I'll not discourse with you further. Take it, leave it, whatever.
CID's command group and headquarters relocated from Falls Church to Fort Belvoir, Va., in 1995. But you are right about the rest, and no one at USACIDC is going to give that permission.
I am a retired Army officer who served in Criminal Investigation Command (not "Division"). Not long before I retired, I served on the Oklahoma City Bomb Investigation Task Force that led to the conviction of Timothy McVeigh, so I know something about how sensitive investigations are done. I posted my own analysis on my own blog. As soon as I read FoxNews' and CBN's pieces, I knew there is nothing to this. CBN's report evinces gullibility, not journalism. I tell you with certainty that no one with "intimate knowledge" of the investigation has spoken to CBN, as it claims. The ones who do have such knowledge are very few in number and have no incentive or reason to talk to a reporter and every incentive not to. What disturbs me is the speed and uncritical willingness of the right side of the blogosphere (where I locate myself, too, actually) to embrace a re[ort no better than a rumor and use it to start beating on the Army, the administration, Muslims generally and on and on. Everybody needs to slow down and get a grip. I've been blogging since 2002 and no one familiar with my work could even slightly accuse me of be an apologist for this administration (or even the last one) or of Islam or Islamism. Quite the opposite. But this is ridiculous.
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