After 16 Years of War, Senate Finally Debates Need for War Debate

Senate Lawmakers Address The Press After Their Weekly Policy Luncheons

Sen. Paul's attempt was an amendment to the 2018 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that would have repealed the 2001 and 2002 Authorizations for Use of Military Force after six months and allow for Congress debate another potential war authorization.

Paul managed to gather support from Democrats.

"For the first time in 15 years, we are debating the congressional role in the declaration of war".

The Senate on Wednesday rejected a bipartisan push for a new war authorization against the Islamic State and other terrorist groups, electing to let the White House rely on a 16-year-old law passed after the September 11 attacks as the legal basis to send USA troops into combat. "That war is long since over". For example, American troops are today battling an enemy - IS militants - that didn't exist 16 years ago, and are fighting in Syria, a country where the USA forces didn't expect to be. US Senator Rand Paul believes that this legislation has bound the United States to long-running proxy wars around the globe. He said such a motion was crucial for spurring a renewed debate on the legality and constitutionality of the U.S.'s involvement in such conflicts.

Opponents of Paul's amendment agreed on the need for a new authorization but warned that that his plan would backfire.

The annual bill, which still currently carries the controversial war powers resolutions, was cleared for consideration Monday by Congress and now some major amendments, including Paul's, are set to be heard.

The Senate instead voted 61-36 Wednesday on a procedural motion to put Paul's amendment to the side, effectively killing it.

Trump announced last month a new strategy for the U.S.'s war in Afghanistan, one in which the US would no longer focus on "nation-building", but simply "killing terrorists".

This was driven in no small part by objections from the Senate's Republican leadership. Trump previously criticized the country's involvement in Afghanistan, calling on his predecessor to withdraw US troops.

Paul wanted Congress to "reassert its authority to declare war from the Executive Branch". US Senators just voted for endless war.

In Iraq, the US has also struggled to stabilize the country since overthrowing Iraqi President Saddam Hussein. "Senator Paul's amendment, had it been approved, would have provided the much-needed push for Congress to uphold its constitutional duty to authorize war, and to limit the use of extraordinary wartime powers to kill and detain".

"That the President is authorized to use all necessary and appropriate force against those nations, organizations, or persons he determines planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001, or harbored such organizations or persons, in order to prevent any future acts of global terrorism against the United States by such nations, organizations or persons".

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