I’m glad the MDJ carries Charles Krauthammer’s columns and normally I agree with him quite a bit. Friday was an exception.
He asserts, “The power to declare war has become, through no fault of anyone, archaic and obsolete.” He seems to be suggesting that congressional authority should be abandoned in this case. I submit that it is precisely because congressional authorization has been circumvented so often since World War II that we have found ourselves so bogged down in numerous ill-fated operations from Korea to Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan. If a president has the sole authority to start a war, then he is no different from the old, crowned heads of Europe who, at various times, would go to war for any reason, or for NO reason. Their only problem with doing it was raising revenue (taxes) to pay the fighting forces (unpopular in any era or regime).
Congress is supposed to represent the will of the people and if the people don’t wish to go to war, then we should not be forced into it. Perhaps this is something John Adams (our second President) had in mind when he said, “Great is the guilt of an unnecessary war.”