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60 Words Update

Thursday, August 14, 2014 - 07:00 AM

Since we first reported this story a number of things related to the 2001 AUMF have happened. We have seen a call for the repeal of this AUMF, but as of now the law remains on the books... 

On August 7th, President Obama authorized strikes against the terrorist organization in Iraq calling itself The Islamic State (Or ISIS or ISIL). For now the legal authority behind this action is all Article II power but the longer this conflict lasts (and the president seems to be preparing us for a long conflict) the more important it will become for the president to have a piece of legislation to back him up

Some have worried he might try to use those old 60 words to justify this battle, but as many scholars have pointed out Al-Qaeda 'divorced' ISIS back in February of this year, so there is no possible link to the terrorist group who committed September 11th and therefore no way to use the 2001 AUMF. 

Many think that Obama will have to ask Congress for a NEW Authorization For Use of Military Force for this specific conflict. In fact on July 25th the house passed a resolution which said that the president has to do exactly that - get authorization from Congress for a sustained presence of combat troops in Iraq. 

But asking congress to authorize a new war, is probably the last thing a president who has vowed to end wars wants to do. 

As mentioned in the hour here's a link to Barbara Lee's 9/14/01 speech:

And this is the spiciest part of the Senate hearing from 5/16/2013 that we talked about:

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Comments [8]

Sam Johnson from Austin

I found the show on 9-11/authorization of force/60 words very interesting. I think one fact was omitted that in fairness should have been included. After 9-11 there was a real fear that there would be another attack on US soil. Since 9-11, using the existing frame work, there has not been another attack on US soil. Frankly, I am always frightened how easy it would be to take out the biggest building or shopping center in a town like Ssn Antonio or Des Moines or Colorado Springs that does not have a big security mind set. As clumsy as the present system is, it seems to be protecting the US. One other thought. You could do a show on gurilea war fare or asymmetric war fare. because that is really what 9-11 is. Islamic terrorists who certainly want to kill as many of as possible hiding in a sea of people on the Middle East that we do not want to harm. very good show. Could have been a little better. Thanks for the great job you do!

Aug. 20 2014 11:29 PM
P.A. Martin from PA

This is why I listen.

Aug. 20 2014 03:19 PM
Miles from San Rafael, CA

Minor quibble - was a 23 year old picture from over the burning oil fields of Kuwait from Desert Storm the best way to illustrate the current bombing in northern Iraq? Certainly it is a dramatic photograph, but do we even use those jets anymore?

In general a fan of the work that you guys do.

Aug. 18 2014 08:31 PM
Chris Maher from Austin, Texas

This is terrific reporting. Period. It’s why I listen to NPR and Radiolab. And why I contribute to my local affiliate. Thank you.

And…

Talk of AUMF and “imminent” and the “war on terror” seems a bit from the old school and quaint in light of the (seemingly) permanent, low-level war that is taking place via cyber means.

Scholars and others debate whether this cyber-stuff is war or not. That’s for them.

For the rest of us, there is the indisputable and disturbing fact of pervasive and expanding Internet-dependence. And what this means is that, in essence, the concepts “post-Internet” and “post-apocalypse” are roughly equal.

And given this nauseating dependence… a very real conflict is and has been taking place for years. This conflict involves the usual suspects (state actors) and all manner of so-called non-state actors. The stakes are very high. What box-cutters helped enable on 9/11… browsers can (if unchecked) do today. That last statement is (perhaps) a bit of hyperbole. But… only a bit.

It may be said that Snowden, for whom I have little regard, helped “us” understand the broad and (for some) breathtaking activities of the NSA. Ooooo-kay.

If so, I think it’s time for there to be an adult conversation about what it means for a country (any country) to be so dependent on the ‘net, about the active and concerted efforts to use it a medium for great destruction… and about the fact that our policy makers lack the wisdom and awareness to grasp the ramifications of this ongoing conflict. About that last point: what I’m talking about, i.e. ongoing cyber conflict traceable to Internet-dependence, is something that actually is a crisis… and it is one that is, at present, ungoverned… and, worse yet, may prove ungovernable.

Aug. 18 2014 10:54 AM
Chris Maher from Austin, Texas

This is terrific reporting. Period. It’s why I listen to NPR and Radiolab. And why I contribute to my local affiliate. Thank you.

And…

Talk of AUMF and “imminent” and the “war on terror” seems a bit from the old school and quaint in light of the (seemingly) permanent, low-level war that is taking place via cyber means.

Scholars and others debate whether this cyber-stuff is war or not. That’s for them.

For the rest of us, there is the indisputable and disturbing fact of pervasive and expanding Internet-dependence. And what this means is that, in essence, the concepts “post-Internet” and “post-apocalypse” are roughly equal.

And given this nauseating dependence… a very real conflict is and has been taking place for years. This conflict involves the usual suspects (state actors) and all manner of so-called non-state actors. The stakes are very high. What box-cutters helped enable on 9/11… browsers can (if unchecked) do today. That last statement is (perhaps) a bit of hyperbole. But… only a bit.

It may be said that Snowden, for whom I have little regard, helped “us” understand the broad and (for some) breathtaking activities of the NSA. Ooooo-kay.

If so, I think it’s time for there to be an adult conversation about what it means for a country (any country) to be so dependent on the ‘net, about the active and concerted efforts to use it a medium for great destruction… and about the fact that our policy makers lack the wisdom and awareness to grasp the ramifications of this ongoing conflict. About that last point: what I’m talking about, i.e. ongoing cyber conflict traceable to Internet-dependence, is something that actually is a crisis… and it is one that is, at present, ungoverned… and, worse yet, may prove ungovernable.

Aug. 18 2014 10:54 AM
JayTee3 from NJ

As I mentioned on the original 60 Words site, we need to regard terrorism as the acts of organized international criminals, subject to the International Criminal Court in the Hague. Their authority to keep them there while awaiting trial is recognized by the world community as legitimate.

Unlike war, criminality is a continuing issue that requires continuing efforts and continuing funding. Having an ongoing system of justice, with an ongoing commitment to paying for it, is the continuing responsibility of any civilized society. Trying to call it a "war" instead is like trying to put a square peg into a round hole--it just doesn't fit in many ways.

Warriors can be heroes. Criminals cannot. Thus, in characterizing it as a war, we inadvertently invite criminals to wear the banner of "war hero".

The solution to this problem is to identify these people as criminals, and to participate in the international criminal justice system. So far, retrogressive elements of American society have successfully block to such a move, and America has paid a very heavy price for such recalcitrance ever since.

Aug. 17 2014 03:59 PM
Sheridan from Phoenix

Absolutely the one of best reporting segments I have ever heard! I am thankful! Thank You!

Aug. 16 2014 10:46 PM
Mike U. from San Diego

60 Words is some of the best reporting I have read or heard about Iraq and Afghanistan (and every other location where we have taken military action) since 9/11. Ms. Padgett, you and the RadioLab team are up there with Matt Tiabbi at Rolling Stone, digging deeper than corporate media ever will, and telling the public the truth.

Thank you.

Aug. 16 2014 07:05 PM

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