One year on, we’re now seemingly farther away from Congressional authorization for this war than we’ve ever been. This time last year, there were a range of op-eds from legal experts across the political spectrum explaining that a sustained war against Isis is plainly illegal if Congress does not vote on it. Now, that’s virtually been forgotten. Most news organizations don’t bother bringing up the subject anymore, and even the nascent talk in Congress has all but evaporated.
So the White House is seemingly free to use the authorization for war in Afghanistan to fight a war in Syria and Iraq, against an enemy that didn’t exist at the time al-Qaida attacked the US on 9/11 (and which al-Qaida now hates as well.) The White House has apparently expanded its reach even further, claiming it can use the al-Qaida war authorization to launch missiles at anyone trying to fight the US-backed “moderate” rebels in Syria, including Syria’s dictator, Bashar al-Assad.
Speaking of Syria, the “plan” to arm the Syrian rebels to defeat Isis, is by all accounts, a complete disaster. I say “plan” in quotation marks because it was clear from the start – even by those who engineered the policy – that arming them would not work. The CIA’s own study concluded arming revolutionary movements almost always has terrible results – the President said as much in an interview months before he proposed Congress do exactly that. Besides the CIA had been arming the rebels for years with no success.