Who Needs ‘Em?

by Paul on January 27, 2008

Meanwhile, as we’re catching up with this week’s news, the Boston Globe’s Charlie Savage brings us the latest part of the administration’s ongoing campaign to render Congress completely meaningless to the process of governing our country.

WASHINGTON – President Bush’s plan to forge a long-term agreement with the Iraqi government that could commit the US military to defending Iraq’s security would be the first time such a sweeping mutual defense compact has been enacted without congressional approval, according to legal specialists.

After World War II, for example – when the United States gave security commitments to Japan, South Korea, the Philippines, Australia, New Zealand, and NATO members – Presidents Truman and Eisenhower designated the agreements as treaties requiring Senate ratification. In 1985, when President Ronald Reagan guaranteed that the US military would defend the Marshall Islands and Micronesia if they were attacked, the compacts were put to a vote by both chambers of Congress.

By contrast, Bush and Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Al-Maliki have already agreed that a coming compact will include the United States providing “security assurances and commitments” to Iraq to deter any foreign invasion or internal terrorism by “outlaw groups.” But a top White House official has also said that Bush does not intend to submit the deal to Congress.

So, now that we find ourselves enmeshed in an occupation following a war that was never formally declared, we’ll be committed to stay forever without a formal treaty. Sweet.

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