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Ron Paul: Remember Fallujah?

Remember Fallujah? Shortly after the 2003 invasion of Iraq, the U.S. military fired on unarmed protestors, killing as many as 20 and wounding dozens. In retaliation, local Iraqis attacked a convoy of U.S. military contractors, killing four. The U.S. then launched a full attack on Fallujah to regain control, which…

Remember Fallujah? Shortly after the 2003 invasion of Iraq, the U.S. military fired on unarmed protestors, killing as many as 20 and wounding dozens. In retaliation, local Iraqis attacked a convoy of U.S. military contractors, killing four. The U.S. then launched a full attack on Fallujah to regain control, which left perhaps 700 Iraqis dead and the city virtually destroyed.

According to press reports last weekend, Fallujah is now under the control of al-Qaeda affiliates. The Anbar province, where Fallujah is located, is under siege by al-Qaeda. During the 2007 “surge,” more than 1,000 US troops were killed “pacifying” the Anbar province. Although al-Qaeda was not in Iraq before the U.S. invasion, it is now conducting its own surge in Anbar.

For Iraq, the U.S. “liberation” is proving far worse than the authoritarianism of Saddam Hussein, and it keeps getting worse. Last year was Iraq’s deadliest in five years. In 2013, fighting and bomb blasts claimed the lives of 7,818 civilians and 1,050 members of the security forces. In December alone nearly a thousand people were killed.

I remember sitting through many hearings in the House International Relations Committee praising the “surge,” which we were told secured a U.S. victory in Iraq. They also praised the so-called “Awakening,” which was really an agreement by insurgents to stop fighting in exchange for U.S. dollars. I always wondered what would happen when those dollars stopped coming.

Where are the surge and awakening cheerleaders now?

One of them, Richard Perle, was interviewed last year on NPR and asked whether the Iraq invasion that he pushed was worth it. He replied:

I’ve got to say I think that is not a reasonable question. What we did at the time was done in the belief that it was necessary to protect this nation. You can’t a decade later go back and say, well, we shouldn’t have done that.

Many of us were saying all along that we shouldn’t have done that – before we did it. Unfortunately the Bush Administration took the advice of the neocons pushing for war and promising it would be a “cakewalk.” We continue to see the results of that terrible mistake, and it is only getting worse.

Last month the U.S. shipped nearly a hundred air-to-ground missiles to the Iraqi air force to help combat the surging al-Qaeda. Ironically, the same al-Qaeda groups the U.S. is helping the Iraqis combat are benefiting from the US covert and overt war to overthrow Assad next door in Syria. Why can’t the U.S. government learn from its mistakes?

The neocons may be on the run from their earlier positions on Iraq, but that does not mean they have given up. They were the ones pushing for an attack on Syria this summer. Thankfully they were not successful. They are now making every effort to derail President Obama’s efforts to negotiate with the Iranians. Just last week William Kristol urged Israel to attack Iran with the hope we would then get involved. Neoconservative Senators from both parties recently introduced the Nuclear Weapon Free Iran Act of 2013, which would also bring us back on war-footing with Iran.

Next time the neocons tell us we must attack, just think “Iraq.”

ron paul

Ron Paul is a former U.S. Congressman from Texas and the leader of the pro-liberty, pro-free market movement in the United States. His weekly column – reprinted with permission – can be found here.

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53 comments

euwe max January 5, 2014 at 10:36 pm

I remember.

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SparkleCity January 6, 2014 at 6:37 am

I did 3 tours over there as an Air Guardsman (flew support missions in ’03-’04 when the shit was bad in Iraq) and served in the 82nd Airborne from 1972-1974 and am a Vietnam era vet.

I still get a knot in my stomach when I remember Saigon falling in May 1975.

Even when I was in the desert back then I figured the same kind of stuff was going to happen in Iraq sooner or later

Looks like I was right.

I don’t agree with a lot of what Ron Paul says but I do think every time you hear some neo-con or Rush Limbaugh type chickenhawk talking smack on talk radio they should be reminded of what is unfolding and how they cheered on the troops in ’03-’04 while they sat on their fat middle-aged asses and talked smack. All the while accusing dissenters of the war in Iraq of being some kind of unamerican pinko fag.

While we’re at it, I posted some time ago about the hypocrisy of Bengazi and referenced the killing and desecration of the 4 American contractors referenced in the above statement from Ron Paul. They hung what was left of their burnt bodies on a bridge railing and smacked them like some kind of toasted pinatta(sp)

How come Trey Gowdy and the rest of the right-wingnuts are not calling for hearings on that fuck-up?

Fucking hypocrites all……..

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The Colonel January 6, 2014 at 8:06 am

Sparkle – contractors are fair game. The four in question were “Blackwater
Contractors” and were pulling security for another “contracted
operation”. http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/warriors/contractors/highrisk.html

“Outsourcing of our war effort” is indicative of a bigger problem. If we’re not willing to put young American’s lives on the line we shouldn’t be @*#&^$ing around in the country in the first place. if we’re to damn cheap to do it right and
make it a literal total war we shouldn’t be @((*#&^$ing around in the country in the first place. Contractors outnumber soldiers in Afghanistan and did by a factor of almost 2-1 at one time in Iraq.

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Sabbath-War Pigs January 6, 2014 at 9:29 am

If the Republic somehow could return to the time in which war had to be voted on/approved by Congress things might be a little better….

Yea, I know, wishful thinking.

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TontoBubbaGoldstein January 6, 2014 at 11:25 am

If we just had ….like a written document that spelled stuff like this out…..a “supreme law of the land”, if you will. While we are at it, (TBG goes big or goes home)….said document could guarantee citizen’s certain rights and place restrictions on what the government can do……..

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Sabbath-War Pigs January 6, 2014 at 9:33 am

Btw, I should clarify and say a “declaration of war”, which has very specific consequences(you go in to win and tax the shit out of everyone here), as opposed to these bullshit police actions.

The current method is a subversion of the intent of the Constitution.

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PostSurgeOperative January 6, 2014 at 6:34 pm

Ron Paul voted for the 2001 Authorization for Military Force which gave Pres. Bush the power to implement his ‘War on Terror’. The 2001 AUMF lead to all the worst over-reaches of the Bush admin, including the various NSA programs that were instituted under his watch.

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SparkleCity January 7, 2014 at 8:01 am

I’m well aware that those guys were “contractors”

If I’m not mistaken at least two of the guys killed in Bengazi were “contractors” (I think one had been a SEAL but I’m pretty sure they were both ex-Special Ops types).

So make sure you inform Trey Gowdy of the fact that “the Contractors” killed in Bengazi were “fair game”as well.

I know all about “contractors”. I flew them all over Iraq and Afghanistan (as well as Brit “Contractors’ in Gulf I)

A couple of guys I flew with are “Contractors” in Afghanistan right now.

You can blame “Rummie” for letting that shit get out of hand. He wanted to have a war within budget.

He wanted to run the war like a corporation. Wars aren’t fought and won “on the cheap”. I’m sure you recall some of the high ranking guys at the Pentagon saying it would take more troops than “Rummie” wanted and were ‘shown the door”.(i.e. =”retired”)

If I’m not mistaken it was either Gen. Shaskivilli (Mispelled as hell) or that Japanese-American general. They have his uniform at the Hawaiian War Museum at Wakki Beach (an old WWII era bunker right on the beach) I visited it and saw the uniform while I was on my R&R back in 2004. That’s why I remember his association with the brew-ha.

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Peace & trade is best January 7, 2014 at 9:14 am

“Wars aren’t fought and won “on the cheap”. ”

You can say that again, it’s why we shouldn’t so eager to engage in them and require an actual declaration so everyone immediately feels the pain instead of sustained money printing that wipes everything out(including our industrial base) over time and prolongs the economic misery.

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Manray January 6, 2014 at 7:35 am

Ron Paul has hit the proverbial nail on the head, although
he singles out for responsibility the neocon “chicken hawks” and not “The
Decider.” Unfortunately, no easy or
quick solutions will be found. Iraq is
an example of unintended consequences. The Middle East rested in a precarious
state of political and social equilibrium until the needless invasion upset the
balance. The status quo ante bellum may not have been to our liking, but it was
roughly stable. Since then many thousands of people have died and hundreds of
thousands more have been displaced and now live in squalor as refugees. The
only winners are Iran and Al Qaeda. Bush wanted to bring democratic values to
the region, and he did so, with the elections of Morsi in Egypt and Hamas
candidates in Gaza. Was that what he had in mind? He told the Dallas Morning
News recently: “I’m comfortable with what I did.” I don’t know how he
sleeps at night.

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Smirks January 6, 2014 at 9:10 am

I’m of the opinion that Bush (and Obama) just rubber stamp a lot of shit that they are told will protect Americans, to be honest. It isn’t much different from how Congress is bought and ends up passing bills not written by them, but written for them by various special interest groups. I firmly believe that most of the other contenders in the last few presidential elections, on both sides of the aisle, would have been pretty much the same, too.

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venomachine January 6, 2014 at 9:40 am

It is a matter of political survival, really. You couldn’t get elected (or re-elected) if you said/did what really needs to be done.

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Smirks January 6, 2014 at 9:10 am

I’m of the opinion that Bush (and Obama) just rubber stamp a lot of shit that they are told will protect Americans, to be honest. It isn’t much different from how Congress is bought and ends up passing bills not written by them, but written for them by various special interest groups. I firmly believe that most of the other contenders in the last few presidential elections, on both sides of the aisle, would have been pretty much the same, too.

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ashley January 6, 2014 at 10:33 am

the decider was also a chickenhawk, remember?

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Smirks January 6, 2014 at 8:53 am

This is the obvious outcome once American occupation ends. It will happen to Afghanistan shortly after we leave in 2014 2024. We should have never gone. But we never learn our lesson. I mean, our meddling in the Middle East is infallible, right? It certainly never comes back to bite us in the ass, that’s for sure. Why, wasn’t long ago when Donald Rumsfeld was shaking hands with Saddam Hussein. How’s he doing now?

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venomachine January 6, 2014 at 9:39 am

In retrospect, the money we spent on the war probably would have been better spent on research into energy efficiency and new forms of power generation.

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ashley January 6, 2014 at 10:32 am

the US government should never use tax dollars or printed money to do research and development for private companies. the money we spent on the war should have gone to pay down on our national debt or pay back social security the money gingrich and crew stole to “balance the budget” during the 90s

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CNSYD January 6, 2014 at 11:53 am

eliminate R&D dollars from the budget and there will be virtually no R&D. “Private” companies will not spend dollars to do any more than token R&D.

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ashley January 6, 2014 at 12:05 pm

WHAT? you seriously believe the government has invented everything? that is beyond ignorant. i don’t even know what in the hell you would call that logic. it is private companies that invent 99% of inventions. you think the government invented the automobile? airplane? train? televisions? microwaves? private companies invent everything. government just gets in the fucking way.

The Colonel January 6, 2014 at 12:59 pm

Ashley if the gubamint didn’t spend money on R&D no one would have developed the M1 Tank, the undisputed king of the battlefield for more than 30 years. Corporations would spend tons of money on R&D though developing things like IPad, IPods, Macs, cracks, jacks, slacks and backpacks – nothing against all that stuff but the world is a very dangerous place and somebody has to have the ability to prevent most everybody else from getting too “froggy”.
Once upon a time there were two of us doing that, the US and the USSR. For a while it was just us. Now China wants to play and Russia has aspirations of greatness again. Things look a lot like 1914 except now China or Russia will play the part of Germany and the US will play the part of Great Britain – hopefully I’m just paranoid. Some very senior officers thought so when I said told a formation of about 1,500 “soon to be new officers” that the world was a far more dangerous place without the Soviet Union than it was with it. I gave that speech in June of 1990 – 6 months later we were at war with a country that had formerly been held in check largely by the “Good Ol’USSR”.
But then maybe I’m just paranoid.

ashley January 7, 2014 at 1:22 am

hey, genius, the gubamint didn’t invent the M1 tank. Chrysler invented the M1 tank. you know, that PRIVATE company? dumbass

The Colonel January 7, 2014 at 2:50 am

Uhm, yeah, Chrysler just decided to invent and build a tank cause everybody knows that there’s a huge market out there for them…

What really happened went something like this:

The Army realized it was outclassed in numbers if not capability by the T 60 and T 70 series Soviet tanks. After a lengthy experiment with the MBT70, they issued an RFP based on that experiment and years of research by NATICK/TACOM and private companies like RAND Corp..

The RFP specified a vehicle with certain capabilities, one of which was armor protection (Chobam Armor, developed by the Army in conjunction with the MoD Great Britain, the composition of which is still secret). Another was the ability to carry a certain weapon type (the weapon was developed by the army in conjunction with our good friends in the MoD) . The third was a fire control system developed completely by the Army that is still the best in the world as it gets upgrades every couple of years.

Chrysler produced the tank at a wholly owned government facility in Lima, Ohio. General Dynamics bought Chrysler out and completed the production.

So what we have here is a situation where Chrysler built and perfected the manufacture of a tank based on requirements and resources provided. They did not “invent” anything.
Concept of a tank – Leonardo
Armor – MoD
Gun – MoD
Fire Control – US Army.
Chrysler does get credit for their expertise in making the turbine drive work – the reason they were chosen in the first place is that they were the only company in the world with experience in land turbine powered vehicles – a technology
they discarded as impractical in the 50s

Tom Schneider January 8, 2014 at 11:47 am

@ ‘The Colonel’; based on your post, I’m certainly glad that those having your mind-set don’t have an absolute monopoly on running this country and the world and setting the today’s agenda and future agendas! I believe the kind of thinking your post reveals needs to morph itself and submit to the ‘Ron Paul mind-set’, which favors friendship and trade as the definitive foreign policy for the US, replacing this kind of thinking that put the US in the lethal world police role since Teddy Rooseveldt to now, accentuated and creating disaster after disaster from WW2.

The Colonel January 8, 2014 at 12:19 pm

“My good friends, this is the second time there has come back from Germany to Downing Street peace with honour. I believe it is peace for our time. We thank you from the bottom of our hearts. Now I recommend you go home, and sleep quietly in your beds” Neville Chamberlin

“Armed force is in the background in this program; but it is in the background, and, if the moral force of the world will not suffice, the physical force of the world shall. But that is the last resort, because this is intended as a constitution of peace, not as a league of war.” Woodrow Wilson – League of Nations speech (the only thing in the speech he got right….)

Soft Sigh from Hell January 6, 2014 at 8:17 pm

But the private companies are paid (contracted) by the federal government to do it in a large proportion of cases, for instance in many (most?) of the NASA and NASA spin-off instances.
I’d be willing to bet a mild wager that the technologies behind CDs and flash drives were initially developed via a military worried about electromagnetic pulse weapons that can probably erase magnetic memory a lot farther away than they can short out or vaporize conductors (e.g., wiring).

SparkleCity January 7, 2014 at 7:26 am

FYI: An EMP will fry a flash drive just as fast as any other device with microchip/electronic “innards”

The only totally functional communication devices after an EMP will be telegraph machines, smoke signals and semaphores.

NASA technology spin-offs are too numerous to list but VELCRO is top on my list!!!

Jimmy Jordan January 14, 2014 at 4:47 pm

You probably think Al Gore invented the Internet Protocol you use to type that nonsense here.

euwe max January 6, 2014 at 12:30 pm

In retrospect, the money we spent on the war probably would have been better spent on research into energy efficiency and new forms of power generation.

——–

‘We know where they are,’ probably turned out not to be exactly what one would have preferred in retrospect.” – Donald Rumsfeld

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Unused Hydrogen FillingStation January 7, 2014 at 9:17 am

The day mankind develops truly cheap, portable power that can produce big energy is the day many of its problems are solved. It will be key to giving mankind a big leap forward….way more so than quantum computers.

It will be the private sector developing said power source….not government IMHO.

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euwe max January 7, 2014 at 2:58 pm

There are a lot of dynamics in that scenario – I can see a world war coming out of that.

SparkleCity January 7, 2014 at 8:11 am

I personally reminded some “chicken hawks” of that very picture just as the war drums were beating to finish off Iraq.

That shut them up real quick.

They’re just different in the Middle East.

Got my T-shirts to prove it:

1. Yom Kippur War Alert/DEFCON 3 (with “First Oil Shortage & associated Recession of 1974-1975 campaign ribbon): October 1973

2. Gulf I

3. Gulf II

They’re just different over there…………..

Seems like we haven’t learned since 1973……………….

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9" January 6, 2014 at 4:54 pm

Ron Paul has become as tiresome and worn out as,Ru Paul.It’s over,bitches.Shut up.

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SparkleCity January 7, 2014 at 7:28 am

I heard that!!!!!

But then if Ron Paul wasn’t around whose peanuts out of the shit would TEA partiers eat then??

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9" January 7, 2014 at 3:46 pm

They could eat,Rand’s? I’m not sure what kinda diet he’s on,so let them eat corn! Ron and Rand are the goofiest politicians,ever.

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Tom Schneider January 8, 2014 at 11:57 am

You’re 9″ of idiocy. Only Rand is in politics.

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Jimmy Jordan January 14, 2014 at 4:45 pm

I love when the Siths speak in absolutes.

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RogueElephant January 6, 2014 at 5:38 pm

It seems more and more that every time we go to “war” we stay a few years, kill and wound a large number of America’s finest then cut and run so our enemy can take back over. I haven’t always agreed with Dr. Paul but more and more I see the reason behind what he says. I was in Vietnam during the 68 Tet offensive and also remember the fall of Saigon. If you go to any clothing store and start checking tags you will see that a large number of items are now made in Vietnam. Which brings us back to the old saying that a rising tide raises all boats. Plain old capitalism has done more for world Pease than all the armies ever could. This should be a lesson for every politician.

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SparkleCity January 7, 2014 at 7:40 am

I hear you Bro.

I tried to emigrate to Australia after Saigon fell because I was so pissed off (I actually called the Australian Embassy).

Unfortunately the recession of 74-75 was going strong and the only people Australia was taking at the time was doctors & nurses. They had no need for 21 year old paratroopers 6 months out of the Army.

I’m all for capitalism myself but every now and then greed shows its ugly head.

At present, it appears that a blend of capitalism and socialism is the economic model of choice. Make cheap shit under the direction of Party Officials with a cut for those higher up on the food chain.

Sadly, the world is not perfect.

Wishing you and all the other Vietnam vets only the best.

Lord, how you guys got the shitty end of the stick.

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RogueElephant January 7, 2014 at 10:19 am

That is the biggest reason I have been so proud of our country for the way they have praised our troops in subsequent wars since Vietnam. I think there was a lot of guilt from our treatment. The real reason for our treatment returning home was due to liberalism. When you put it in that perspective you get a truer picture. The liberals sold us out just like they have in Iraq. But the end result is the same. Lots of dead and wounded soldiers and things go back to samo-samo. All this “nation building ” crap is what cost so many lives. Desert Storm was the way to fight a war. Go in , kick ass, go home.

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Jay Jefferson January 12, 2014 at 10:29 pm

Desert Storm was a disaster, and the precursor was the indefinite war in Iraq that still rages in Fallujah. What U.S. interest was served by the rescue of the Kuwaiti monarchy (a dictatorship) from Saddam Hussein (another dictatorship)?

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PostSurgeOperative January 6, 2014 at 6:25 pm

If the people who supported the Iraq war are ‘neo-cons’, then what should we call people who supported the 2001 Authorization for Military Force which is the legal basis for housing prisoners at Gitmo, extraordinary rendition, ‘black site’ secret prisons, and virtually every other ‘War on Terror’ over-reach by the Bush administration? Also, the 2001 AUMF is not limited to Afghanistan, and is in fact the basis for US drone strikes in countries like Yemen, Pakistan, etc.

FFS, at least the US war in Iraq is over. Afghanistan rages on, and the US is still targeting a growing list of countries and individuals pursuant to the objectives of the 2001 AUMF which RON PAUL VOTED FOR!

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kem63 January 7, 2014 at 5:28 am

LOL. All of house & senete voted for the 2001 Authorization for Military Force except for one democrat.

All people who knowingly support unjustified wars are Criminally insane spenders that believe in killing.
In 2001 no one knew the truth except Bush & his administration & his generals. You can’t blame the emotional congressmen/women for what they also was lied to about.

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PostSurgeOperative January 7, 2014 at 11:38 am

You’re full of shit. If Ron Paul can be excused for voting for Bush’s ‘war on terror’ policy on the 2001 AUMF because he was lied into supporting it, then you have to excuse every other congressperson who was lied to about Bush’s planned invasion of Iraq. On the other hand, you could be honest and simply admit that Ron Paul’s vote for the 2001 AUMF was nothing more than a political calculation on his part. He himself has admitted that he was pressured by some of his advisers to vote for the 2001 war on terror (AUMF).

Btw, here’s the full text of the 2001 AUMF:

“Joint Resolution

To authorize the use of United States Armed Forces against those responsible for the recent attacks launched against the United States.

Whereas, on September 11, 2001, acts of treacherous violence were committed against the United States and its citizens; and

Whereas, such acts render it both necessary and appropriate that the United States exercise its rights to self-defense and to protect United States citizens both at home and abroad; and

Whereas, in light of the threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States posed by these grave acts of violence; and

Whereas, such acts continue to pose an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States; and

Whereas, the President has authority under the Constitution to take action to deter and prevent acts of international terrorism against the United States: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

(a) IN GENERAL- 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 international terrorism against the United States by such nations, organizations or persons.

(b) War Powers Resolution Requirements-

(1) SPECIFIC STATUTORY AUTHORIZATION- Consistent with section 8(a)(1) of the War Powers Resolution, the Congress declares that this section is intended to constitute specific statutory authorization within the meaning of section 5(b) of the War Powers Resolution.

(2) APPLICABILITY OF OTHER REQUIREMENTS- Nothing in this resolution supersedes any requirement of the War Powers Resolution.”

Notice that the 2001 AUMF gives all powers to the President, but does not mention which President; that’s because the law has no sunset provision, and was not intended to be limited to one president’s term. Notice, also, that this authority is virtually unlimited, and included the entire Earth as the potential battleground, and does not specify the govt of Afghanistan as a target for US military attack.

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Zevyn January 7, 2014 at 1:20 pm

There’s no way anyone could have predicted that “all necessary and appropriate force…” as a retaliation to 9/11 would include atrocities that spanned over a decade, but even if you had the foresight, how would you explain to your constituents that you voted no on getting payback on those responsible because the power would ultimately be abused?

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PostSurgeOperative January 7, 2014 at 2:28 pm

Apparently, you didn’t listen to or read the many speeches Ron gave leading up to his vote for the 2001 AUMF. He predicted the law would result in abuses, but he voted for it anyway purely out of fear he might have to face a tough opponent in the next Republican primary.

I think a better question you might ask would be: why did Ron Paul support Israel’s right to self-defense in the 1981 ‘Operation Opera’ attack on an Iraqi nuclear power plant, but then turn around and say that the US has no right to self-defense in pre-emptive strikes in Iraq or Iran?

Zevyn January 7, 2014 at 3:06 pm

I still fail to see how that makes him morally reprehensible, wildly inconsistent or unqualified to comment on Iraq.

Jimmy Jordan January 14, 2014 at 4:45 pm

You beat me to it. I think POST is Rudy G

Jay Jefferson January 12, 2014 at 10:26 pm

Ron Paul voted to authorize the U.S. government to use force to bring to justice those responsible for the 9/11 attacks. The congressman did not authorize, and has been very vocal about this for the past decade, an occupation of Afghanistan without end.

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PostSurgeOperative January 12, 2014 at 11:40 pm

Actually, if you read the full text of the 2001 AUMF that Ron voted for, you will see that what it authorizes goes far, far beyond what you are claiming. For example, there’s no sunset provision in the 2001 AUMF, which means Ron literally voted to authorize an open-ended military action, with virtually no oversight from Congress.

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Jimmy Jordan January 14, 2014 at 4:43 pm

Dear lord. Ive read it. I served in Iraq. Read it again.

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PostSurgeOperative January 14, 2014 at 7:21 pm

Typical moRon. The 2001 AUMF had absolutely nothing to do with the Iraq. Fucking idiot.

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tHEtRUTHhURTS January 8, 2014 at 9:27 pm

Meanwhile over 60,000 people have been killed in the Northern Mexican Drug wars since 2006….Mass slaughter and a failed state on the boarders of the US…..and the best we can do is not report it and offer amnesty as payment to Mexico for our continued involvement in their internal affairs.

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Jay Jefferson January 12, 2014 at 10:24 pm

Or just legalize drugs?

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