Wednesday, May 14, 2008

The Dog Of War Is Unchained

From Rutgers Clinic Sues President Bush Over Iraq War by David Swanson:

The Rutgers/Newark Constitutional Litigation Clinic filed suit today in the Federal District Court in Newark against President Bush over the War in Iraq. The Complaint seeks a Declaratory Judgment that the President’s decision to launch a preemptive war against a sovereign nation in 2003 violated Article I, Section 8 of the United States Constitution, which assigns to Congress the power to Declare War.

According to Professor Frank Askin, founding director of the Clinic and attorney for the Plaintiffs in New Jersey Peace Action v. George W. Bush, six law students worked with him through much of the academic year studying the issues and preparing the law suit.

The unusual 20-page Complaint relies very heavily on the annals of the 1787 Constitutional Convention, at which the Founders deliberately denied to the president the power to wage war except in response to a sudden attack when Congress did not have time to act. “The Founders were very clear,” said Askin “that only Congress could make that awesome decision. They were not permitted to delegate that power to the president and thus be able later to disclaim responsibility for a decision gone bad. It was that momentous decision that allowed Thomas Jefferson to proclaim that the Convention had ‘chained the dog of war.’”

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