Wrongheaded NYT Views When They’re Right
by Stephen Lendman
On March 9, a Times editorial headlined “Repeal the Military Force Law.” Reasons given omitted what’s most important. More on that below.
On September 14, 2001, Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) was introduced. It never should have been done in the first place.
UN Charter provisions explain under what conditions waging war is justified. They’re clear and unambiguous.
Article 2(3) and Article 33(1) require peaceful settlement of international disputes. Article 2(4) prohibits force or its threatened use.
Article 51 allows the “right of individual or collective self-defense if an armed attack occurs against a Member….until the Security Council has taken measures to maintain international peace and security.”
Justifiable self-defense is permissible. Articles 2(3), 2(4), and 33 prohibit unilaterally threatening or using force not allowed under Article 51, authorized by the Security Council, and, for America, constitutionally allowed under Article I, Section 8.
Big Lies launch wars. Waging them on terror doesn’t wash. Nor does doing so on people, groups, or those harboring them. Nothing in international or constitutional law permits it.
September 11, 2001 was the mother of all false flags. Bush officials took full advantage. So did Congress. Multiple direct and proxy wars followed. They’re lawless. They still rage. They do so on humanity. Bipartisan complicity bears full responsibility.
AUMF passed near unanimously. House representatives voted 420 – 1. Barbara Lee (D. CA) was the sole dissenter.
On the same day, it passed the Senate. It did so 98 – 0. Capitol Hill has few profiles in courage. On this day, they were almost entirely absent.
On September 18, Bush signed it into law. Doing so declared war. It did so lawlessly. Nonbelligerent countries were attacked. Wars without end followed.
AUMF authorized “all necessary and appropriate force against those nations, organizations, or persons he determines planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001, or harbored such organizations or persons, in order to prevent any future acts of international terrorism against the United States by such nations, organizations or persons.”
Saying so doesn’t wash. International law says otherwise. So does constitutional law.
Carte blanche war-making authority was lawlessly granted. America’s war on terror began. It rages out of control. It does so at home and abroad.
Section 1034 of HR 1540: National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012 said:
“(1) the United States is engaged in an armed conflict with al-Qaeda, the Taliban, and associated forces and that those entities continue to pose a threat to the United States and its citizens, both domestically and abroad;
(2) the President has the authority to use all necessary and appropriate force during the current armed conflict with al-Qaeda, the Taliban, and associated forces pursuant to the Authorization for Use of Military Force (Public Law 107-40)….”
As commander in chief, presidents wage wars anywhere. They do so at their discretion. One follows others. Congressional budgets prioritize them.
Rule of law principles are spurned. So are democratic values. Imperial priorities matter most. Popular ones lose out. Vital needs aren’t addressed. Times editors didn’t explain.
They claimed Congress approved AUMF “with good intentions.” Saying so is spurious on its face. Times editors know it. They lied. They betrayed their readers doing it.
They blamed Al Qaeda and Taliban leaders for 9/11. They claimed they “sheltered and aided the terrorists who had attacked the United States.” They did nothing of the sort.
False flags are an American tradition. They reflect covert operations. They’re designed to deceive. Official stories are falsified. They’re myths. They’re Big Lies. They’re widely believed fantasies. They’re contrary to reality.
Bin Ladin, Al Qaeda, and Taliban officials had nothing to do with 9/11. Convincing evidence proves an inside job. Times editors are complicit in coverup. They report what they know is false. They omit what’s most important.
Eleven and half years after the fact, they admit Bush took advantage. Obama does more so, but they won’t say. They treat him with kid gloves.
They supported Bush throughout his tenure. They did so unconscionably. They never said they’re sorry. Apologies aren’t in their vocabulary.
They express belated doubts. AUMF became “the basis for a perpetual, ever-expanding war that undermined the traditional constraints on government power.”
“The result is an unintelligible policy without express limits or protective walls.”
Saying so comes too late to matter. Bush ravaged humanity. So does Obama. Countries were destroyed. Millions died. Millions more suffer grievously. Wars rage out-of-control.
AUMF is “too vague,” claim Times editors. Why didn’t they say it when it mattered? Why didn’t they call it lawless? Why say anything now as an afterthought?
Why did give Judith Miller front page space? Why did they feature her propaganda? Why did they do so daily? Why did they let her lie for power?
Why did they feature an entire Noah’s Ark of scam artists? Why were they unapologetic? Why aren’t they apologizing now? Why did they support Obama’s war on Libya? Why did their reporters and others give NATO bombing coordinates?
Why don’t they denounce Obama’s war on Syria, Mali, Somalia, Yemen, and elsewhere? Why don’t they do what’s most important? Why don’t they do it when it matters?
Quoting former defense secretary counsel Jeh Johnson, saying “War must be regarded as a finite, extraordinary and unnatural state of affairs” doesn’t bring back millions of lost lives.
It doesn’t relieve human misery. It doesn’t rebuild destroyed countries. It doesn’t hold responsible US officials accountable. It doesn’t prosecute and convict them for high crimes.
It doesn’t relieve Times editors of complicity. When it mattered most, they supported wrong over right. They still do. Their call to repeal UUMF rings hollow. How they suggest is worse.
Congress can wait until US forces leave Afghanistan, they say. Doing so is waiting for Godot. Washington plans permanent occupation. Times editor know but won’t say.
Howard Zinn said “no flag large enough cover(s) the shame of killing innocent people.” Maybe he had Times editors in mind.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at email@example.com.
His new book is titled “Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity.”
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.
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