Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Webb Introduces Legislation To Prevent Unilateral Unprovoked Attack On Iran

Senator James Webb (D-VA) introduced legislation on Monday which would forbid any funding for unilateral action against Iran unless certain conditions were met, as VOA reports:
"The major function of this legislation is to prevent this administration from commencing unprovoked military activities against Iran without the approval of the Congress," said James Webb.

Webb and other congressional Democrats have expressed concern that President Bush may be trying to create a pretext for using military action against Iran.
Quite so. Bush, Cheney, and many others (including a large number of foreign nationals) have been pushing the US toward war with Iran for a long time now.
The administration has urged Congress not to approve legislation that would restrict the president's powers as Commander in Chief.

Senator Webb argues his bill does no such thing, and would allow for U.S. military action against Iran in some cases:

"I would like to emphasize that this bill will not take any military options off the table, nor will it tie the hands of the administration if our military forces are actually attacked from Iranian soil or its territorial waters, or by forces that retreat into Iranian territory," he said.
This story has not received any coverage from any major newspaper, nor have any of the wire services touched it, but we can find more details at FOX News [!]

Webb Introduces Bill Barring Funding For Military Action Against Iran
The proposal would allow military action under the following scenarios without prior congressional authorization:

— When the action is aimed at repelling an attack launched or about to be launched from inside Iran;

— When military forces are in "hot pursuit" of enemy forces fleeing into Iran; and

— When the military is supporting intelligence gathering.

The bill would require the president to submit a report to Congress within 24 hours justifying any spending that would support any of the exceptions.
Those are some loopholes! Big enough for a black Suburban? Just wondering...
Webb told FOX News last week that his concern came about when he compared the 2002 authorization to go to war in Iraq with the presidential signing statement accompanying it clarifying prerogatives the administration deemed permissible under the authorization.

He said the ambiguity in the signing statement leaves room for the president to interpret the authorization as authorizing war with Iran.
There's plenty of ambiguity around these days and that's got a lot of people worried. Perhaps not enough people, and perhaps too much worry and too little action. It's time to fix that. And I'll have more on this topic soon.