Iraq Resolution: Wikis

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The Iraq Resolution or the Iraq War Resolution (formally the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002 [1], Pub.L. 107-243, 116 Stat. 1498, enacted October 16, 2002, H.J.Res. 114) is a joint resolution (i.e., a law) passed by the United States Congress in October 2002 as Public Law No: 107-243, authorizing the Iraq War.

Contents

Contents

The resolution cited many factors to justify the use of military force against Iraq:[2][3]

The resolution "supported" and "encouraged" diplomatic efforts by President George W. Bush to "strictly enforce through the U.N. Security Council all relevant Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq" and "obtain prompt and decisive action by the Security Council to ensure that Iraq abandons its strategy of delay, evasion, and noncompliance and promptly and strictly complies with all relevant Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq."

The resolution authorized President Bush to use the Armed Forces of the United States "as he determines to be necessary and appropriate" in order to "defend the national security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq; and enforce all relevant United Nations Security Council Resolutions regarding Iraq."

Passage

An authorization by Congress was sought by President George W. Bush soon after his September 12, 2002 statement before the U.N. General Assembly asking for quick action by the Security Council in enforcing the resolutions against Iraq.[4][5]

Of the legislation introduced by Congress in response to the President Bush's requests[6], S.J.Res. 45 sponsored by Sen. Daschle & Sen. Lott was based on the original White House proposal authorizing the use of force in Iraq, H.J.Res. 114 sponsored by Rep. Hastert & Rep. Gephardt and the substantially similar S.J.Res. 46 sponsored by Sen. Lieberman were modified proposals. H.J.Res. 110 sponsored by Rep. Hastings was a separate proposal never considered on the floor. Eventually, the Hastert-Gephardt proposal became the primary legislation that Congress began to focus working on.

Introduced in Congress on October 2, 2002 in conjunction with the Administration's proposals[2][7], H.J.Res. 114 passed the House of Representatives on Thursday afternoon at 3:05 p.m. EDT on October 10, 2002 by a vote of 296-133,[8] and passed the Senate after midnight early Friday morning at 12:50 a.m. EDT on October 11, 2002 by a vote of 77-23.[9] It was signed into law as Pub.L. 107-243 by President Bush on October 16, 2002.

United States House of Representatives

Party Ayes Nays PRES No Vote
Republican 215 6 0 2
Democratic 82 126 0 1
Independent 0 1 0 0
TOTALS 297 133 0 3

United States Senate

Party Ayes Nays No Vote
Republican 48 1 0
Democratic 29 21 0
Independent 0 1 0
TOTALS 77 23 0
Final Congressional vote by chamber and party, October 2002

Amendments offered to the House Resolution

The Lee Amendment

Amendment in the nature of a substitute sought to have the United States work through the United Nations to seek to resolve the matter of ensuring that Iraq is not developing weapons of mass destruction, through mechanisms such as the resumption of weapons inspections, negotiation, enquiry, mediation, regional arrangements, and other peaceful means.
Sponsored by Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA).[10]
Failed by the Yeas and Nays: 72 - 355 [11]

The Spratt Amendment

Amendment in the nature of a substitute sought to authorize the use of U.S. armed forces to support any new U.N. Security Council resolution that mandated the elimination, by force if necessary, of all Iraqi weapons of mass destruction, long-range ballistic missiles, and the means of producing such weapons and missiles. Requested that the President should seek authorization from Congress to use the armed forces of the U.S. in the absence of a U.N. Security Council resolution sufficient to eliminate, by force if necessary, all Iraqi weapons of mass destruction, long-range ballistic missiles, and the means of producing such weapons and missiles. Provided expedited consideration for authorization in the latter case.
Sponsored by Rep. John Spratt (D-SC-5).[12]
Failed by the Yeas and Nays: 155 - 270 [13]

The House Rules Amendment

An amendment considered as adopted pursuant to the provisions of H.Res. 574 [14]
Sponsored by House Rules.[15]
Resolution (H.RES.574) agreed to by voice vote [16]

Amendments offered to the Senate Resolution

The Byrd Amendments

To provide statutory construction that constitutional authorities remain unaffected and that no additional grant of authority is made to the President not directly related to the existing threat posed by Iraq.
Sponsored by Sen. Robert Byrd (D-WV).[17]
Amendment SA 4868 not agreed to by Yea-Nay Vote: 14 - 86 [18]
To provide a termination date for the authorization of the use of the Armed Forces of the United States, together with procedures for the extension of such date unless Congress disapproves the extension.
Sponsored by Sen. Robert Byrd (D-WV).[19]
Amendment SA 4869 not agreed to by Yea-Nay Vote: 31 - 66 [20]

The Levin Amendment

To authorize the use of the United States Armed Forces, pursuant to a new resolution of the United Nations Security Council, to destroy, remove, or render harmless Iraq's weapons of mass destruction, nuclear weapons-usable material, long-range ballistic missiles, and related facilities, and for other purposes.
Sponsored by Sen. Carl Levin (D-MI).[21]
Amendment SA 4862 not agreed to by Yea-Nay Vote: 24 - 75 [22]

The Durbin Amendment

To amend the authorization for the use of the Armed Forces to cover an imminent threat posed by Iraq's weapons of mass destruction rather than the continuing threat posed by Iraq.
Sponsored by Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL).[23]
Amendment SA 4865 not agreed to by Yea-Nay Vote: 30 - 70 [24]

Criticism

Weapons of mass destruction and Al-Qaeda

Colin Powell holding a model vial of anthrax while giving a presentation to the United Nations Security Council.

Two of the arguments used to justify the invasion of Iraq — the capability to produce and/or the possession of weapons of mass destruction and active links to al Qaeda — have been found to be incorrect according to all subsequent official reports.[25][26][27] The post-invasion Duelfer Report stated that Hussein had still not given up on trying to produce WMD in 2003. His strategy was to first bring UN sanctions to an end by demonstrating that he was cooperating with weapons inspectors and, once sanctions were lifted, to then revive Iraq's WMD program, including nuclear weapons.[28] The report also stated that Hussein did not want to appear weak. To deter his enemies, he intentionally deceived the world into thinking he still had WMD. There was a "balancing act" between cooperating with the UN and keeping a "strategic deterrent".[29]

A 2007 report by the Inspector General of the Department of Defense, declassified and released at the request of Senator Carl M. Levin (D-Mich), asserted that the claims of an operational working relationship between Iraq and al Qaeda, as put forth by a key Pentagon office in the lead up to the invasion of Iraq, were based on dubious or unconfirmed reports.[30] President Bush has, since the invasion of Iraq, explicitly stated that that country was not involved in 9-11, which has also been concluded by subsequent reports,[31] and al-Qaeda were operating in areas outside of Saddam Hussein's control. Also, the day before she voted on the resolution, Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton said during a speech on the Senate floor that there was no dispute that Hussein was not involved in the September 11th attacks.[32] Nevertheless, BBC News, The Christian Science Monitor, the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Institute for Public Accuracy, and Media Matters for America contend that members of the administration repeatedly over the years made suggestive statements with the implied message there was a link between Saddam Hussein and the attacks.

[33]

The Bush administration initially suggested the discrepancy between the allegations and the subsequent findings was due to failure by the intelligence community. However, it became apparent that, prior to the invasion, these allegations had already been widely disputed,[34] which had purportedly been reported to the U.S. administration. An in-depth investigation into the nature of these discrepancies by the Senate Intelligence Committee was frustrated, according to the New York Times.[35] The Robb-Silberman Commission stated that the President's Daily Briefs from the intelligence community tended to repeat information in a misleading way. The National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) provided to Congress was more "nuanced" and less "alarmist" than information given to the President.[36] However, the vast majority of Senators did not read the NIE and relied on briefings by the administration. Among those who have stated they did not read the NIE and voted positively for the Iraq Resolution are the former Senator and current United States Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Senator John McCain, and former Senator John Edwards.[37]

The assertion such weapons posed a threat towards the U.S. was not supported by the available evidence at the time, according to subsequent reports.[38] The Bush administration asserted that two small trailers that had been found in Iraq were "weapons factories," despite the fact that U.S. intelligence officials possessed evidence to the contrary at that time.[39] Weapon inspectors were given access to the alleged weapon factories, despite statements to the contrary by the Bush administration. Continuing these inspections was made impossible by the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq which forced the U.N. inspectors out, ignoring their requests for more time.[40]

Skeptics argue that the administration knowingly distorted intelligence reports or ignored contrary information in constructing their case for the war.[41][42] The Downing Street memo and the Bush-Blair memo are used to substantiate that allegation.[43] Congressional Democrats sponsored both a request for documents and a resolution of inquiry.[44]

Legality

International law

Debate about the legality of the 2003 invasion of Iraq under international law centers around ambiguous language in parts of UN Resolution 1441 (2002).[45] The UN Charter prohibits any war unless it is out of self-defense or when it is sanctioned by the UN security council. If these requirements are not met international law describes it a war of aggression.[46]

The position of the US and UK is that the invasion was authorized by a series of UN resolutions dating back to 1990. Resolution 1441 declared that Iraq was in "material breach" of the cease-fire under UN Resolution 687 (1991), which required cooperation with weapons inspectors. The Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties states that under certain conditions, a party may invoke a "material breach" to suspend a multilateral treaty. Thus, the US and UK claim that they used their right to suspend the cease-fire in Resolution 687 and to continue hostilities against Iraq under the authority of UN Resolution 678 (1990), which originally authorized the use of force after Iraq invaded Kuwait.[47] This is the same argument that was used for Operation Desert Fox in 1998.[48] They also contend that, while Resolution 1441 required the UNSC to assemble and assess reports from the weapons inspectors, it was not necessary for the UNSC to reach an agreement on the course of action. If, at that time, it was determined that Iraq breached Resolution 1441, the resolution did not "constrain any member state from acting to defend itself against the threat posed by Iraq".[49]

It remains unclear whether any party other than the Security Council can make the determination that Iraq breached Resolution 1441, as UN members commented that it is not up to one member state to interpret and enforce UN resolutions for the entire council.[50] In addition, other nations have stated that a second resolution was required to initiate hostilities.[51] John Conyers, Robert Parry and Marjorie Cohn assert that the Iraq war was a violation of the U.N. Charter and as such a war of aggression (a crime against peace) and therefore a war crime.[52] Kofi Annan too has said the war in Iraq is an "illegal act that contravened the UN charter."[53] Some scholars, including Columbia law professor Michael Dorf, have argued that treaties are binding on the U.S. under international law.[54]

U.S. law

In early 2003, the Iraq Resolution was challenged in court to stop the invasion from happening. The plaintiffs argued that the President does not have the authority to declare war. The final decision came from a three-judge panel from the US Court of Appeals for the First Circuit which dismissed the case. Judge Lynch wrote in the opinion that the Judiciary cannot intervene unless there is a fully-developed conflict between the President and Congress or if Congress gave the President "absolute discretion" to declare war.[55]

See also

References

  1. ^ Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002 (pdf)
  2. ^ a b The White House (2002-10-02). "President, House Leadership Agree on Iraq Resolution". Press release. http://georgewbush-whitehouse.archives.gov/news/releases/2002/10/print/20021002-7.html. 
  3. ^ The White House (2002-10-02). "Joint Resolution to Authorize the Use of United States Armed Forces Against Iraq". Press release. http://georgewbush-whitehouse.archives.gov/news/releases/2002/10/print/20021002-2.html. 
  4. ^ The White House (2002-09-12). "President's Remarks at the United Nations General Assembly". Press release. http://georgewbush-whitehouse.archives.gov/news/releases/2002/09/print/20020912-1.html. 
  5. ^ The White House (2002-09-18). "Remarks by the President after Meeting with Congressional Leaders". Press release. http://georgewbush-whitehouse.archives.gov/news/releases/2002/09/print/20020918-1.html. 
  6. ^ Legislation related to the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq, Congressional Record, Library of Congress.
  7. ^ Major Congressional Actions of H.J.Res. 114, Congressional Record, Library of Congress
  8. ^ 107th Congress-2nd Session 455th Roll Call Vote of by members of the House of Representatives
  9. ^ 107th Congress-2nd Session 237th Roll Call Vote by members of the Senate
  10. ^ H.AMDT.608 - Amendment in the nature of a substitute of H.J.RES.114, 107th Congress, U.S. House of Representatives, Library of Congress, 2002-10-10
  11. ^ On Agreeing to the Lee of California Substitute Amendment, 107th Congress, U.S. House of Representatives, Clerk of the House, 2002-10-10
  12. ^ H.AMDT.609 - Amendment in the nature of a substitute of H.J.RES.114, 107th Congress, U.S. House of Representatives, Library of Congress, 2002-10-10
  13. ^ On Agreeing to the Spratt of South Carolina Substitute Amendment, 107th Congress, U.S. House of Representatives, Clerk of the House, 2002-10-10
  14. ^ H.RES.574 - Providing for the consideration of the joint resolution (H.J.RES.114), 107th Congress, U.S. House of Representatives, Library of Congress, 2002-10-08
  15. ^ H.AMDT.610 - Amendment considered as adopted pursuant to the provisions of H.Res.574, 107th Congress, U.S. House of Representatives, Library of Congress, 2002-10-10
  16. ^ On Agreeing to Resolve H.RES.574, 107th Congress, U.S. House of Representatives, Library of Congress, 2002-10-08
  17. ^ S.AMDT.4868 - Providing for Statuary Construction in the Consideration of the Joint Resolution (S.J.RES.45), 107th Congress, U.S. Senate, Library of Congress, 2002-10-10
  18. ^ On Agreeing to the Amendment (Byrd Amdt. No. 4868), 107th Congress, U.S. Senate, Library of Congress, 2002-10-10
  19. ^ S.AMDT.4869 - Providing for Congresional Construction in the Consideration of the Joint Resolution (S.J.RES.45), 107th Congress, U.S. Senate, Library of Congress, 2002-10-10
  20. ^ On Agreeing to the Amendment (Byrd Amdt. No. 4869), 107th Congress, U.S. Senate, Library of Congress, 2002-10-10
  21. ^ S.AMDT.4862 - Providing for Congressional Construction in the Consideration of the Joint Resolution (S.J.RES.45), 107th Congress, U.S. Senate, Library of Congress, 2002-10-10
  22. ^ On Agreeing to the Amendment (Levin Amdt. No. 4862), 107th Congress, U.S. Senate, Library of Congress, 2002-10-10
  23. ^ S.AMDT.4865 - Providing for Congressional Amendment in the Consideration of the Joint Resolution (S.J.RES.45), 107th Congress, U.S. Senate, Library of Congress, 2002-10-10
  24. ^ On Agreeing to the Amendment (Byrd Amdt. No. 4865), 107th Congress, U.S. Senate, Library of Congress, 2002-10-10
  25. ^ No weapons of mass destruction
  26. ^ No relation between Saddan Jussein and al-Qaeda
  27. ^ Link with Al Qaeda
  28. ^ Comprehensive Report of the Special Advisor to the DCI on Iraq's WMD: Volume 1; Regime Strategic Intent Page 1. "Key Findings". Retrieved 8/31/2007. "He sought to balance the need to cooperate with UN inspections—to gain support for lifting sanctions—with his intention to preserve Iraq’s intellectual capital for WMD with a minimum of foreign intrusiveness and loss of face." "Saddam wanted to recreate Iraq’s WMD capability—which was essentially destroyed in 1991—after sanctions were removed and Iraq’s economy stabilized, but probably with a different mix of capabilities to that which previously existed. Saddam aspired to develop a nuclear capability—in an incremental fashion, irrespective of international pressure and the resulting economic risks—but he intended to focus on ballistic missile and tactical chemical warfare (CW) capabilities."
  29. ^ Comprehensive Report of the Special Advisor to the DCI on Iraq's WMD: Volume 1; Regime Strategic Intent Page 34. "WMD Possession—Real or Imagined—Acts as a Deterrent". Retrieved 8/31/2007. "In order to counter these threats, Saddam continued with his public posture of retaining the WMD capability. This led to a difficult balancing act between the need to disarm to achieve sanctions relief while at the same time retaining a strategic deterrent. The Regime never resolved the contradiction inherent in this approach. Ultimately, foreign perceptions of these tensions contributed to the destruction of the Regime."
  30. ^ Hussein's Prewar Ties To Al-Qaeda Discounted - Pentagon Report Says Contacts Were Limited By R. Jeffrey Smith, Washington Post, April 6, 2007
  31. ^ Key Bush Intelligence Briefing Kept From Hill Panel By Murray Waas, National Journal, November 22, 2005
  32. ^ Floor Speech of Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton 10/10/2002. Retrieved 9/1/2007. "Now, I believe the facts that have brought us to this fateful vote are not in doubt. <...> He has also given aid, comfort, and sanctuary to terrorists, including Al Qaeda members, though there is apparently no evidence of his involvement in the terrible events of September 11, 2001. <...> Now this much is undisputed."
  33. ^ Linking Iraq and September 11
  34. ^ Blowing Cheney's Cover Ray McGovern, April 10, 2006
  35. ^ The Intelligence Business editorial, The New York Times, May 7, 2006
  36. ^ Commission on the Intelligence Capabilities of the United States Regarding Weapons of Mass Destruction: Overview Page 14. 3/31/2005. Retrieved 9/1/2007. "As problematic as the October 2002 NIE was, it was not the Community’s biggest analytic failure on Iraq. Even more misleading was the river of intelligence that flowed from the CIA to top policymakers over long periods of time—in the President’s Daily Brief (PDB) and in its more widely distributed companion, the Senior Executive Intelligence Brief (SEIB). These daily reports were, if anything, more alarmist and less nuanced than the NIE."
  37. ^ Few senators read Iraq NIE report The Hill (newspaper) Published 6/19/2007. Retrieved 9/1/2007. "'It’s probably pretty hard to say with 100 percent certainty how many read it,' the senior staffer said. 'You can say with 100 percent certainty that it’s less than 10.'"
  38. ^ Decoding Mr. Bush's Denials The New York Times Editorial, November 15, 2005
  39. ^ Lacking Biolabs, Trailers Carried Case for War By Joby Warrick, The Washington Post, April 12, 2006
  40. ^ Weapons inspectors
  41. ^ Selectively disseminating information
  42. ^ Misrepresenting the facts surrounding Iraq
  43. ^ Downing Street memo
  44. ^ FOIA request
  45. ^ World Press: "The United Nations, International Law, and the War in Iraq" Retrieved 9/5/2007. "Resolution 1441 ultimately passed—by a vote of 15-0—because its ambiguous wording was able to placate all parties. <...> Resolution 1441 is ambiguous in two important ways. The first deals with who can determine the existence of a material breach. The second concerns whether another resolution, explicitly authorizing force, is needed before military action against Iraq may be taken."
  46. ^ Iraq impeachable offense?
  47. ^ ASIL: Security Council Resolution 1441 on Iraq's Final Opportunity to Comply with Disarmament Obligations November, 2002. Retrieved 9/5/2007. "The language of 'material breach' in Resolution 1441 is keyed to Article 60 of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties, which is the authoritative statement of international law regarding material breaches of treaties. Under Article 60 of the Vienna Convention, a material breach is an unjustified repudiation of a treaty or the violation of a provision essential to the accomplishment of the object or purpose of a treaty. Article 60 provides that a party specially affected by a material breach of a multilateral treaty may invoke it as a ground for suspending the operation of the treaty in whole or in part in the relations between itself and the defaulting state. <...> Security Council Resolution 687, adopted at the end of the Gulf War, includes a provision declaring a formal cease-fire between Iraq, Kuwait and the member states (such as the United States) cooperating with Kuwait in accordance with Resolution 678 (1990). Resolution 678 authorized member states to use all necessary means to restore international peace and security in the area, and thus provided the basis under international law for the allies' military action in the Gulf War. The determination in Resolution 1441 that Iraq is already in material breach of its obligations under Resolution 687 provides a basis for the decision in paragraph 4 (above) of Resolution 1441 that any further lack of cooperation by Iraq will be a further material breach. If Iraq, having confirmed its intention to comply with Resolution 1441, then fails to cooperate fully with the inspectors, it would open the way to an argument by any specially affected state that it could suspend the operation of the cease-fire provision in Resolution 687 and rely again on Resolution 678."
  48. ^ World Press: "The United Nations, International Law, and the War in Iraq" Retrieved 9/5/2007. "[On Dec. 16, 1998], U.S. and British warplanes launched air strikes against Iraq after learning that Iraq was continuing to impede the work of UNSCOM, the weapons inspectors sent to Iraq at the close of the Gulf War, and thus was not in compliance with Resolution 687. When the Security Council met that night to discuss whether individual member states could resort to force without renewed Security Council consent, it was clear that the Security Council members did not all agree on the legality of the U.S. and British resort to force. According to the press release from that meeting, the U.S. representative claimed his country's actions were authorized by previous council resolutions (as many in the Bush administration are arguing again today). The British delegate similarly argued that because Iraq had not complied with the terms of Resolution 687, military force was justified."
  49. ^ World Press: "The United Nations, International Law, and the War in Iraq" Retrieved 9/5/2007. "At that time, U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. John Negroponte said: 'This resolution contains no 'hidden triggers' and no 'automaticity' with respect to the use of force. If there is a further Iraqi breach, reported to the council by UNMOVIC, the IAEA, or a Member State, the matter will return to the council for discussion….[But] if the Security Council fails to act decisively in the event of further Iraqi violations, this resolution does not constrain any member state from acting to defend itself against the threat posed by Iraq or to enforce the relevant United Nations resolutions and protect world peace and security.' The British ambassador, Sir Jeremy Greenstock, agreed."
  50. ^ US not allowed to speak for the entire council
  51. ^ ASIL: Security Council Resolution 1441 on Iraq's Final Opportunity to Comply with Disarmament Obligations November, 2002. Retrieved 9/5/2007. "[T]he representative of Mexico (a current member of the Security Council) said after the vote on Resolution 1441 that the use of force is only valid as a last resort and with prior, explicit authorization from the Council. Mexico does not stand alone in taking that position. <...> It would be argued that, in light of the emphasis in the Charter on peaceful dispute settlement, Resolution 678 could not be used as an authorization for the use of force after twelve years of cease fire, unless the Security Council says so."
  52. ^ War of aggression
  53. ^ Iraq war illegal, says Annan BBC News, September 16, 2004
  54. ^ WHEN AMERICAN STATES EXECUTE CITIZENS OF FOREIGN COUNTRIES: The Case of Gerardo Valdez By MICHAEL C. DORF, FindLaw, July 24, 2001
  55. ^ Doe v. Bush Opinion by Judge Lynch 3/13/2003 Pages 3,4,23,25,26. Retrieved 8/7/2007.

External links

  • Floor speeches

, October 2, 2002.]]


The Iraq Resolution or the Iraq War Resolution (formally the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002 [1], Pub.L. 107-243, 116 Stat. 1498, enacted October 16, 2002, H.J.Res. 114) is a joint resolution passed by the United States Congress in October 2002 as Public Law No: 107-243, authorizing the Iraq War.

Contents

Contents

The resolution cited many factors to justify the use of military force against Iraq:[2][3]

The resolution "supported" and "encouraged" diplomatic efforts by President George W. Bush to "strictly enforce through the U.N. Security Council all relevant Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq" and "obtain prompt and decisive action by the Security Council to ensure that Iraq abandons its strategy of delay, evasion, and noncompliance and promptly and strictly complies with all relevant Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq."

The resolution authorized President Bush to use the Armed Forces of the United States "as he determines to be necessary and appropriate" in order to "defend the national security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq; and enforce all relevant United Nations Security Council Resolutions regarding Iraq."

Passage

An authorization by Congress was sought by President George W. Bush soon after his September 12, 2002, statement before the U.N. General Assembly asking for quick action by the Security Council in enforcing the resolutions against Iraq.[4][5]

Of the legislation introduced by Congress in response to President Bush's requests[6], S.J.Res. 45 sponsored by Sen. Daschle & Sen. Lott was based on the original White House proposal authorizing the use of force in Iraq, H.J.Res. 114 sponsored by Rep. Hastert & Rep. Gephardt and the substantially similar S.J.Res. 46 sponsored by Sen. Lieberman were modified proposals. H.J.Res. 110 sponsored by Rep. Hastings was a separate proposal never considered on the floor. Eventually, the Hastert-Gephardt proposal became the legislation Congress focused on.

Introduced in Congress on October 2, 2002, in conjunction with the Administration's proposals[2][7], H.J.Res. 114 passed the House of Representatives on Thursday afternoon at 3:05 p.m. EDT on October 10, 2002, by a vote of 296-133,[8] and passed the Senate after midnight early Friday morning, at 12:50 a.m. EDT on October 11, 2002, by a vote of 77-23.[9] It was signed into law as Pub.L. 107-243 by President Bush on October 16, 2002.

United States House of Representatives

Party Ayes Nays PRES No Vote
Republican 215 6 0 2
Democratic 82 126 0 1
Independent 0 1 0 0
TOTALS 297 133 0 3

United States Senate

Party Ayes Nays No Vote
Republican 48 1 0
Democratic 29 21 0
Independent 0 1 0
TOTALS 77 23 0

Amendments offered to the House Resolution

The Lee Amendment

Amendment in the nature of a substitute sought to have the United States work through the United Nations to seek to resolve the matter of ensuring that Iraq is not developing weapons of mass destruction, through mechanisms such as the resumption of weapons inspections, negotiation, enquiry, mediation, regional arrangements, and other peaceful means.
Sponsored by Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA).[10]
Failed by the Yeas and Nays: 72 - 355 [11]

The Spratt Amendment

Amendment in the nature of a substitute sought to authorize the use of U.S. armed forces to support any new U.N. Security Council resolution that mandated the elimination, by force if necessary, of all Iraqi weapons of mass destruction, long-range ballistic missiles, and the means of producing such weapons and missiles. Requested that the President should seek authorization from Congress to use the armed forces of the U.S. in the absence of a U.N. Security Council resolution sufficient to eliminate, by force if necessary, all Iraqi weapons of mass destruction, long-range ballistic missiles, and the means of producing such weapons and missiles. Provided expedited consideration for authorization in the latter case.
Sponsored by Rep. John Spratt (D-SC-5).[12]
Failed by the Yeas and Nays: 155 - 270 [13]

The House Rules Amendment

An amendment considered as adopted pursuant to the provisions of H.Res. 574 [14]
Sponsored by House Rules.[15]
Resolution (H.RES.574) agreed to by voice vote [16]

Amendments offered to the Senate Resolution

The Byrd Amendments

To provide statutory construction that constitutional authorities remain unaffected and that no additional grant of authority is made to the President not directly related to the existing threat posed by Iraq.
Sponsored by Sen. Robert Byrd (D-WV).[17]
Amendment SA 4868 not agreed to by Yea-Nay Vote: 14 - 86 [18]
To provide a termination date for the authorization of the use of the Armed Forces of the United States, together with procedures for the extension of such date unless Congress disapproves the extension.
Sponsored by Sen. Robert Byrd (D-WV).[19]
Amendment SA 4869 not agreed to by Yea-Nay Vote: 31 - 66 [20]

The Levin Amendment

To authorize the use of the United States Armed Forces, pursuant to a new resolution of the United Nations Security Council, to destroy, remove, or render harmless Iraq's weapons of mass destruction, nuclear weapons-usable material, long-range ballistic missiles, and related facilities, and for other purposes.
Sponsored by Sen. Carl Levin (D-MI).[21]
Amendment SA 4862 not agreed to by Yea-Nay Vote: 24 - 75 [22]

The Durbin Amendment

To amend the authorization for the use of the Armed Forces to cover an imminent threat posed by Iraq's weapons of mass destruction rather than the continuing threat posed by Iraq.
Sponsored by Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL).[23]
Amendment SA 4865 not agreed to by Yea-Nay Vote: 30 - 70 [24]

Criticism

Weapons of mass destruction and Al-Qaeda

holding a model vial of anthrax while giving a presentation to the United Nations Security Council.]]

Two of the arguments used to justify the invasion of Iraq — the capability to produce and/or the possession of weapons of mass destruction and active links to al Qaeda — have been found to be incorrect according to all subsequent official reports.[25][26][27] The post-invasion Duelfer Report stated that Hussein had still not given up on trying to produce WMD in 2003. His strategy was to first bring UN sanctions to an end by demonstrating that he was cooperating with weapons inspectors and, once sanctions were lifted, to then revive Iraq's WMD program, including nuclear weapons.[28] The report also stated that Hussein did not want to appear weak. To deter his enemies, he intentionally deceived the world into thinking he still had WMD. There was a "balancing act" between cooperating with the UN and keeping a "strategic deterrent".[29]

A 2007 report by the Inspector General of the Department of Defense, declassified and released at the request of Senator Carl M. Levin (D-Mich), asserted that the claims of an operational working relationship between Iraq and al Qaeda, as put forth by a key Pentagon office in the lead up to the invasion of Iraq, were based on dubious or unconfirmed reports.[30] President Bush has, since the invasion of Iraq, explicitly stated that Iraq was not involved in 9-11, which has also been concluded by subsequent reports,[31] and al-Qaeda were operating in areas outside of Saddam Hussein's control. Also, the day before she voted on the resolution, Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton said during a speech on the Senate floor that there was no dispute that Hussein was not involved in the September 11th attacks.[32] Nevertheless, BBC News, The Christian Science Monitor, the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Institute for Public Accuracy, and Media Matters for America contend that members of the administration repeatedly over the years made suggestive statements with the implied message there was a link between Saddam Hussein and the attacks.

[33]

The Bush administration initially suggested the discrepancy between the allegations and the subsequent findings was due to failure by the intelligence community. However, it became apparent that, prior to the invasion, these allegations had already been widely disputed,[34] which had purportedly been reported to the U.S. administration. An in-depth investigation into the nature of these discrepancies by the Senate Intelligence Committee was frustrated, according to the New York Times.[35] The Robb-Silberman Commission stated that the President's Daily Briefs from the intelligence community tended to repeat information in a misleading way. The National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) provided to Congress was more "nuanced" and less "alarmist" than information given to the President.[36] However, the vast majority of Senators did not read the NIE and relied on briefings by the administration. Among those who have stated they did not read the NIE and voted positively for the Iraq Resolution are the former Senator and current United States Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Senator John McCain, and former Senator John Edwards.[37]

The assertion such weapons posed a threat towards the U.S. was not supported by the available evidence at the time, according to an editorial in the New York Times.[38] The Bush administration asserted that two small trailers that had been found in Iraq were "weapons factories," despite the fact that U.S. intelligence officials possessed evidence to the contrary at that time.[39] Weapon inspectors were given access to the alleged weapon factories, despite statements to the contrary by the Bush administration. Continuing these inspections was made impossible by the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq which forced the U.N. inspectors out, ignoring their requests for more time.[40]

Skeptics argue that the administration knowingly distorted intelligence reports or ignored contrary information in constructing their case for the war.[41][42] The Downing Street memo and the Bush-Blair memo are used to substantiate that allegation.[43] Congressional Democrats sponsored both a request for documents and a resolution of inquiry.[44]

Legality

International law

Debate about the legality of the 2003 invasion of Iraq under international law centers around ambiguous language in parts of UN Resolution 1441 (2002).[45] The UN Charter prohibits any war unless it is out of self-defense or when it is sanctioned by the UN security council. If these requirements are not met international law describes it a war of aggression.[46]

The position of the US and UK is that the invasion was authorized by a series of UN resolutions dating back to 1990. Resolution 1441 declared that Iraq was in "material breach" of the cease-fire under UN Resolution 687 (1991), which required cooperation with weapons inspectors. The Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties states that under certain conditions, a party may invoke a "material breach" to suspend a multilateral treaty. Thus, the US and UK claim that they used their right to suspend the cease-fire in Resolution 687 and to continue hostilities against Iraq under the authority of UN Resolution 678 (1990), which originally authorized the use of force after Iraq invaded Kuwait.[47] This is the same argument that was used for Operation Desert Fox in 1998.[48] They also contend that, while Resolution 1441 required the UNSC to assemble and assess reports from the weapons inspectors, it was not necessary for the UNSC to reach an agreement on the course of action. If, at that time, it was determined that Iraq breached Resolution 1441, the resolution did not "constrain any member state from acting to defend itself against the threat posed by Iraq".[49]

It remains unclear whether any party other than the Security Council can make the determination that Iraq breached Resolution 1441, as UN members commented that it is not up to one member state to interpret and enforce UN resolutions for the entire council.[50] In addition, other nations have stated that a second resolution was required to initiate hostilities.[51] John Conyers, Robert Parry and Marjorie Cohn assert that the Iraq war was a violation of the U.N. Charter and as such a war of aggression (a crime against peace) and therefore a war crime.[52] Kofi Annan too has said the war in Iraq is an "illegal act that contravened the UN charter."[53] Some scholars, including Columbia law professor Michael Dorf, have argued that treaties are binding on the U.S. under international law.[54]

U.S. law

In early 2003, the Iraq Resolution was challenged in court to stop the invasion from happening. The plaintiffs argued that the President does not have the authority to declare war. The final decision came from a three-judge panel from the US Court of Appeals for the First Circuit which dismissed the case. Judge Lynch wrote in the opinion that the Judiciary cannot intervene unless there is a fully-developed conflict between the President and Congress or if Congress gave the President "absolute discretion" to declare war.[55]

See also

References

  1. ^ Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002 (pdf)
  2. ^ a b The White House (2002-10-02). "President, House Leadership Agree on Iraq Resolution". Press release. http://georgewbush-whitehouse.archives.gov/news/releases/2002/10/print/20021002-7.html. 
  3. ^ The White House (2002-10-02). "Joint Resolution to Authorize the Use of United States Armed Forces Against Iraq". Press release. http://georgewbush-whitehouse.archives.gov/news/releases/2002/10/print/20021002-2.html. 
  4. ^ The White House (2002-09-12). "President's Remarks at the United Nations General Assembly". Press release. http://georgewbush-whitehouse.archives.gov/news/releases/2002/09/print/20020912-1.html. 
  5. ^ The White House (2002-09-18). "Remarks by the President after Meeting with Congressional Leaders". Press release. http://georgewbush-whitehouse.archives.gov/news/releases/2002/09/print/20020918-1.html. 
  6. ^ Legislation related to the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq, Congressional Record, Library of Congress.
  7. ^ Major Congressional Actions of H.J.Res. 114, Congressional Record, Library of Congress
  8. ^ 107th Congress-2nd Session 455th Roll Call Vote of by members of the House of Representatives
  9. ^ 107th Congress-2nd Session 237th Roll Call Vote by members of the Senate
  10. ^ H.AMDT.608 - Amendment in the nature of a substitute of H.J.RES.114, 107th Congress, U.S. House of Representatives, Library of Congress, 2002-10-10
  11. ^ On Agreeing to the Lee of California Substitute Amendment, 107th Congress, U.S. House of Representatives, Clerk of the House, 2002-10-10
  12. ^ H.AMDT.609 - Amendment in the nature of a substitute of H.J.RES.114, 107th Congress, U.S. House of Representatives, Library of Congress, 2002-10-10
  13. ^ On Agreeing to the Spratt of South Carolina Substitute Amendment, 107th Congress, U.S. House of Representatives, Clerk of the House, 2002-10-10
  14. ^ H.RES.574 - Providing for the consideration of the joint resolution (H.J.RES.114), 107th Congress, U.S. House of Representatives, Library of Congress, 2002-10-08
  15. ^ H.AMDT.610 - Amendment considered as adopted pursuant to the provisions of H.Res.574, 107th Congress, U.S. House of Representatives, Library of Congress, 2002-10-10
  16. ^ On Agreeing to Resolve H.RES.574, 107th Congress, U.S. House of Representatives, Library of Congress, 2002-10-08
  17. ^ S.AMDT.4868 - Providing for Statuary Construction in the Consideration of the Joint Resolution (S.J.RES.45), 107th Congress, U.S. Senate, Library of Congress, 2002-10-10
  18. ^ On Agreeing to the Amendment (Byrd Amdt. No. 4868), 107th Congress, U.S. Senate, Library of Congress, 2002-10-10
  19. ^ S.AMDT.4869 - Providing for Congresional Construction in the Consideration of the Joint Resolution (S.J.RES.45), 107th Congress, U.S. Senate, Library of Congress, 2002-10-10
  20. ^ On Agreeing to the Amendment (Byrd Amdt. No. 4869), 107th Congress, U.S. Senate, Library of Congress, 2002-10-10
  21. ^ S.AMDT.4862 - Providing for Congressional Construction in the Consideration of the Joint Resolution (S.J.RES.45), 107th Congress, U.S. Senate, Library of Congress, 2002-10-10
  22. ^ On Agreeing to the Amendment (Levin Amdt. No. 4862), 107th Congress, U.S. Senate, Library of Congress, 2002-10-10
  23. ^ S.AMDT.4865 - Providing for Congressional Amendment in the Consideration of the Joint Resolution (S.J.RES.45), 107th Congress, U.S. Senate, Library of Congress, 2002-10-10
  24. ^ On Agreeing to the Amendment (Byrd Amdt. No. 4865), 107th Congress, U.S. Senate, Library of Congress, 2002-10-10
  25. ^ No weapons of mass destruction
  26. ^ No relation between Saddan Jussein and al-Qaeda
  27. ^ Link with Al Qaeda
  28. ^ Comprehensive Report of the Special Advisor to the DCI on Iraq's WMD: Volume 1; Regime Strategic Intent Page 1. "Key Findings". Retrieved 8/31/2007. "He sought to balance the need to cooperate with UN inspections—to gain support for lifting sanctions—with his intention to preserve Iraq’s intellectual capital for WMD with a minimum of foreign intrusiveness and loss of face." "Saddam wanted to recreate Iraq’s WMD capability—which was essentially destroyed in 1991—after sanctions were removed and Iraq’s economy stabilized, but probably with a different mix of capabilities to that which previously existed. Saddam aspired to develop a nuclear capability—in an incremental fashion, irrespective of international pressure and the resulting economic risks—but he intended to focus on ballistic missile and tactical chemical warfare (CW) capabilities."
  29. ^ Comprehensive Report of the Special Advisor to the DCI on Iraq's WMD: Volume 1; Regime Strategic Intent Page 34. "WMD Possession—Real or Imagined—Acts as a Deterrent". Retrieved 8/31/2007. "In order to counter these threats, Saddam continued with his public posture of retaining the WMD capability. This led to a difficult balancing act between the need to disarm to achieve sanctions relief while at the same time retaining a strategic deterrent. The Regime never resolved the contradiction inherent in this approach. Ultimately, foreign perceptions of these tensions contributed to the destruction of the Regime."
  30. ^ Hussein's Prewar Ties To Al-Qaeda Discounted - Pentagon Report Says Contacts Were Limited By R. Jeffrey Smith, Washington Post, April 6, 2007
  31. ^ Key Bush Intelligence Briefing Kept From Hill Panel By Murray Waas, National Journal, November 22, 2005
  32. ^ Floor Speech of Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton 10/10/2002. Retrieved 9/1/2007. "Now, I believe the facts that have brought us to this fateful vote are not in doubt. <...> He has also given aid, comfort, and sanctuary to terrorists, including Al Qaeda members, though there is apparently no evidence of his involvement in the terrible events of September 11, 2001. <...> Now this much is undisputed."
  33. ^ Linking Iraq and September 11
  34. ^ Blowing Cheney's Cover Ray McGovern, April 10, 2006
  35. ^ The Intelligence Business editorial, The New York Times, May 7, 2006
  36. ^ Commission on the Intelligence Capabilities of the United States Regarding Weapons of Mass Destruction: Overview Page 14. 3/31/2005. Retrieved 9/1/2007. "As problematic as the October 2002 NIE was, it was not the Community’s biggest analytic failure on Iraq. Even more misleading was the river of intelligence that flowed from the CIA to top policymakers over long periods of time—in the President’s Daily Brief (PDB) and in its more widely distributed companion, the Senior Executive Intelligence Brief (SEIB). These daily reports were, if anything, more alarmist and less nuanced than the NIE."
  37. ^ Few senators read Iraq NIE report The Hill (newspaper) Published 6/19/2007. Retrieved 9/1/2007. "'It’s probably pretty hard to say with 100 percent certainty how many read it,' the senior staffer said. 'You can say with 100 percent certainty that it’s less than 10.'"
  38. ^ Decoding Mr. Bush's Denials The New York Times Editorial, November 15, 2005
  39. ^ Lacking Biolabs, Trailers Carried Case for War By Joby Warrick, The Washington Post, April 12, 2006
  40. ^ Weapons inspectors
  41. ^ Selectively disseminating information
  42. ^ Misrepresenting the facts surrounding Iraq
  43. ^ Downing Street memo
  44. ^ FOIA request
  45. ^ World Press: "The United Nations, International Law, and the War in Iraq" Retrieved 9/5/2007. "Resolution 1441 ultimately passed—by a vote of 15-0—because its ambiguous wording was able to placate all parties. <...> Resolution 1441 is ambiguous in two important ways. The first deals with who can determine the existence of a material breach. The second concerns whether another resolution, explicitly authorizing force, is needed before military action against Iraq may be taken."
  46. ^ Iraq impeachable offense?
  47. ^ ASIL: Security Council Resolution 1441 on Iraq's Final Opportunity to Comply with Disarmament Obligations November, 2002. Retrieved 9/5/2007. "The language of 'material breach' in Resolution 1441 is keyed to Article 60 of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties, which is the authoritative statement of international law regarding material breaches of treaties. Under Article 60 of the Vienna Convention, a material breach is an unjustified repudiation of a treaty or the violation of a provision essential to the accomplishment of the object or purpose of a treaty. Article 60 provides that a party specially affected by a material breach of a multilateral treaty may invoke it as a ground for suspending the operation of the treaty in whole or in part in the relations between itself and the defaulting state. <...> Security Council Resolution 687, adopted at the end of the Gulf War, includes a provision declaring a formal cease-fire between Iraq, Kuwait and the member states (such as the United States) cooperating with Kuwait in accordance with Resolution 678 (1990). Resolution 678 authorized member states to use all necessary means to restore international peace and security in the area, and thus provided the basis under international law for the allies' military action in the Gulf War. The determination in Resolution 1441 that Iraq is already in material breach of its obligations under Resolution 687 provides a basis for the decision in paragraph 4 (above) of Resolution 1441 that any further lack of cooperation by Iraq will be a further material breach. If Iraq, having confirmed its intention to comply with Resolution 1441, then fails to cooperate fully with the inspectors, it would open the way to an argument by any specially affected state that it could suspend the operation of the cease-fire provision in Resolution 687 and rely again on Resolution 678."
  48. ^ World Press: "The United Nations, International Law, and the War in Iraq" Retrieved 9/5/2007. "[On Dec. 16, 1998], U.S. and British warplanes launched air strikes against Iraq after learning that Iraq was continuing to impede the work of UNSCOM, the weapons inspectors sent to Iraq at the close of the Gulf War, and thus was not in compliance with Resolution 687. When the Security Council met that night to discuss whether individual member states could resort to force without renewed Security Council consent, it was clear that the Security Council members did not all agree on the legality of the U.S. and British resort to force. According to the press release from that meeting, the U.S. representative claimed his country's actions were authorized by previous council resolutions (as many in the Bush administration are arguing again today). The British delegate similarly argued that because Iraq had not complied with the terms of Resolution 687, military force was justified."
  49. ^ World Press: "The United Nations, International Law, and the War in Iraq" Retrieved 9/5/2007. "At that time, U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. John Negroponte said: 'This resolution contains no 'hidden triggers' and no 'automaticity' with respect to the use of force. If there is a further Iraqi breach, reported to the council by UNMOVIC, the IAEA, or a Member State, the matter will return to the council for discussion….[But] if the Security Council fails to act decisively in the event of further Iraqi violations, this resolution does not constrain any member state from acting to defend itself against the threat posed by Iraq or to enforce the relevant United Nations resolutions and protect world peace and security.' The British ambassador, Sir Jeremy Greenstock, agreed."
  50. ^ US not allowed to speak for the entire council
  51. ^ ASIL: Security Council Resolution 1441 on Iraq's Final Opportunity to Comply with Disarmament Obligations November, 2002. Retrieved 9/5/2007. "[T]he representative of Mexico (a current member of the Security Council) said after the vote on Resolution 1441 that the use of force is only valid as a last resort and with prior, explicit authorization from the Council. Mexico does not stand alone in taking that position. <...> It would be argued that, in light of the emphasis in the Charter on peaceful dispute settlement, Resolution 678 could not be used as an authorization for the use of force after twelve years of cease fire, unless the Security Council says so."
  52. ^ War of aggression
  53. ^ Iraq war illegal, says Annan BBC News, September 16, 2004
  54. ^ WHEN AMERICAN STATES EXECUTE CITIZENS OF FOREIGN COUNTRIES: The Case of Gerardo Valdez By MICHAEL C. DORF, FindLaw, July 24, 2001
  55. ^ Doe v. Bush Opinion by Judge Lynch 3/13/2003 Pages 3,4,23,25,26. Retrieved 8/7/2007.

External links

  • Floor speeches

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