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Obama seeks authorization for ISIS fight

Obama seeks authorization for ISIS fight

“If left unchecked, ISIL will pose a threat beyond the Middle East”

President Obama’s draft Authorization for use of military force (AUMF) against ISIS has been released. There are limitations to its scope, and it includes a time limit, but still…everybody hang on to something.

Here we go: Authorization for the Use of United States Armed Forces in connection with the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant:


The so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) poses a threat to the people and stability of Iraq, Syria, and the broader Middle East, and to U.S. national security. It threatens American personnel and facilities located in the region and is responsible for the deaths of U.S. citizens James Foley, Steven Sotloff, Abdul-Rahman Peter Kassig, and Kayla Mueller. If left unchecked, ISIL will pose a threat beyond the Middle East, including to the United States homeland.

I have directed a comprehensive and sustained strategy to degrade and defeat ISIL. As part of this strategy, U.S. military forces are conducting a systematic campaign of airstrikes against ISIL in Iraq and Syria. Although existing statutes provide me with the authority I need to take these actions, I have repeatedly expressed my commitment to working with the Congress to pass a bipartisan authorization for the use of military force (AUMF) against ISIL. Consistent with this commitment, I am submitting a draft AUMF that would authorize the continued use of military force to degrade and defeat ISIL.

My Administration’s draft AUMF would not authorize long‑term, large-scale ground combat operations like those our Nation conducted in Iraq and Afghanistan. Local forces, rather than U.S. military forces, should be deployed to conduct such operations. The authorization I propose would provide the flexibility to conduct ground combat operations in other, more limited circumstances, such as rescue operations involving U.S. or coalition personnel or the use of special operations forces to take military action against ISIL leadership. It would also authorize the use of U.S. forces in situations where ground combat operations are not expected or intended, such as intelligence collection and sharing, missions to enable kinetic strikes, or the provision of operational planning and other forms of advice and assistance to partner forces.

Although my proposed AUMF does not address the 2001 AUMF, I remain committed to working with the Congress and the American people to refine, and ultimately repeal, the 2001 AUMF. Enacting an AUMF that is specific to the threat posed by ISIL could serve as a model for how we can work together to tailor the authorities granted by the 2001 AUMF.

I can think of no better way for the Congress to join me in supporting our Nation’s security than by enacting this legislation, which would show the world we are united in our resolve to counter the threat posed by ISIL.

The draft AUMF, which you can read below, authorizes the President (subject to limitations) to use military force against ISIS and other persons or forces associated with the group.

The request also contains two major limitations. First (and most notably,) the authorization specifically “does not authorize the use of the United States Armed Forces in enduring offensive ground combat operations.” Additionally, the request ends with a 3-year time limit that will force Congress to reauthorize if our firepower is still needed to beat back ISIS.

As I pointed out this week, portions of the current mission are, according to the Obama administration, still covered by 2002’s bill authorizing the use of military force in Iraq.

You can read the draft AUMF here:

Obama's AUMF Request to Congress

h/t Mediaite


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Clinton used to “triangulate”.

Obama “octagonulates”. He will eventually take every possible position on any given map, cynically WRT all but maybe one or two.

That way, he’s never “wrong”, see? Just like he murmured “terrorism” in the Rose Garden the morning after Benghazi.

I don’t understand. Did King Jordan request permission before attacking ISIS?

ISIS or as Obama prefers to call them ISIL attacked US citizens first.

Is Obama going to ask ISIS if it is okay for the US to attack?

This president will give our guys such restrictive ROE that it’s better we stay the hell out of there.

Authorize Jordan and others to hire our PMCs, but keep our grunts the hell out of there. After ISIS, the Iraqis should welcome Black Water with open arms. Especially when the guys we trained and armed threw down there weapons. I don’t get that mentality and I sure as hell don’t want our guys dying for people who won’t fight for themselves… and then demand our guys be tried for war crimes. No. No. No.

So long as a PR and spin by the enemy can be used as our Achilles heal, no military action. Let the locals swim in this s*** pool.

Also- did he just cut and paste the authorization for Vietnam?

ugottabekiddinme | February 11, 2015 at 11:29 am

“I,” “me,””my” count = 13

The president states that ISIS is NOW a grave threat to the US???

Just a couple days ago in an interview to VOX he said globull warming was more of a threat than ISIS.

Hmmmm – let’s get Brian Williams to question him and find out what the real truth is.

PersonFromPorlock | February 11, 2015 at 12:09 pm

It is not ‘good’, but it’s better that we wait until we have a competent administration in the White House before we try to do anything about ISIS.

What I am reading is a lawyer devised tort law contract to go to limtited war and to absolve the petitioner of all wrong doing – he’s washing his hands of the mess.

    Henry Hawkins in reply to jennifer a johnson. | February 11, 2015 at 12:21 pm

    Yup. The 3 year term is a clue. He’s getting the auth for political reasons, but will largely sit on it, make gestural strikes against ISIS for the rest of his term, enough to be able to say he’s doing something.

    He’s punting to the next administration.

    Let’s draft lawyers to fight this. There has to be some way to put tassels on combat boots.