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Article / Letter to the Ed

Letter to the Editor: War on False Pretenses

September 1, 2013 · · Originally published in The Washington Post

Let's be skeptical before we rush into another war.

Regarding the Sept. 1 front-page article “Syria attack is put on hold”:

keithreifsnyder/FlickrPresident Obama’s offer of congressional debates is better than bombing without debate, but not as good as what our Constitution requires: that Congress, not the president, decide whether we go to war. And the public and Congress must remember our history of waging war based on false pretenses. 

Twice since World War II, Congress and the American people have been duped into going to war based on imaginary threats. The supposed North Vietnamese attack on a U.S. gunship in the Gulf of Tonkin — an attack that was later determined never to have happened — was the basis of a congressional resolution that provided legal cover for the Vietnam War. And then there were the weapons of mass destruction in Iraq that never existed.

Let’s be skeptical before we rush into another war.

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Ron Carver
Associate Fellow of Global Economy