Filed under: Africa, Foreign Policy, Law, National Security | Tags: Lord's Resistance Army, Obama Notifies Congress, Unauthorized Humanitarian Mission
Friday afternoon news dump: President Obama notified Congress today that he is sending about 100 U.S. troops to central Africa to help battle a rebel group known as the Lord’s Resistance Army. According to USA Today,:
The troops arrived in Uganda this week and will ultimately be deployed to South Sudan, the Central African Republic and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Obama said in a letter to congressional leaders.
The Lords Resistance Army is accused of a two-decade spree of murder, rape and kidnapping.
The troops will be combat-equipped, but will fight only in self-defense, Obama said.
Excerpts from Obama’s letter are here. (emphasis added).
Is this the way it is done now? You send troops off on a mission that has no effect on our national security, but is purely a humanitarian effort, and you notify Congress by letter after the fact? And don’t bother mentioning the whole thing to the American people? Richard Epstein said that Obama has no respect for the separation of powers as prescribed by the Constitution, and thus it does not act, in his case, as it was intended, as a brake on his or government actions.
So the Constitution doesn’t act as a brake, nor does precedent, custom or history. Our forces already have a problem with the rules of engagement costing lives. Obama wants to do what he wants to do when he wants to do it, and the heck with following the rules. I find this very troubling.