Perhaps out of legitimate fears over ISIS's increasing power among civilians in the Middle East and jihadists far beyond, or perhaps just because it's an election year, one Republican congressman has unveiled legislation to declare a ceaseless war against at least six terrorist groups in multiple countries.
[H]e will introduce legislation next week authorizing the use of military force against international terrorist groups, including the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and al Qaeda and its affiliates, like al Nusra, Ansar al Sharia, al Shabaab and Boko Haram, while encouraging close coordination with NATO and regional allies on any action.
The text of Wolf's bill authorizes President Obama "to use all necessary and appropriate force against those countries, organizations, or persons associated with or supporting" the groups namechecked above, as well as "any other emerging regional terrorist groups that share common violent extremist ideology with such terrorist groups, regional affiliates, or emerging terrorist groups."
The U.S. has not had a congressionally "authorized use of military force" in effect since the 2001 and 2002 edicts that authorized the Afghanistan war, which is still going on, and the Iraq war, which is currently in sudden-death overtime, with the U.S. occasionally diving in for a scripted play or two.
"For far too long the Obama Administration and the Congress have been debating whether or not authority exists for action to address this threat," Wolf said in his statement:
"This resolution would provide clear authority for the president and our military, working with coalition partners, to go after these terrorists, whether in Syria, Iraq or elsewhere. We cannot continue operating on outdated authorities passed 13 years ago; it is time for this Congress to vote."
Reaction to Wolf's proposal has been somewhat chilly among Twitter pundits so far:
— Jim Newell (@jim_newell) September 3, 2014
— Rob Golan-Vilella (@RGolanVilella) September 3, 2014
— Cora Currier (@coracurrier) September 3, 2014
If I'm a defense contractor, I'd be hyping up Wolf's AUMF. Talk about never-ending business.
— Bradley P. Moss, Esq (@BradMossEsq) September 3, 2014
like war, but forever http://t.co/cmzva1mSUD
— John Wonderlich (@JohnWonderlich) September 3, 2014
Wolf also promises that the military authorization "would fill in the gaps from past authorizations to deal with the current terrorist threat," because Lord knows, if there's one thing that's hampered U.S. operations against fugitive and captured terror suspects, it's been the national leadership's unshakeable commitment to abiding by black-letter law.