War Powers - To Fetishize or Not to Fetishize
An endless congressional polarized debate in Congress about whether to strike an enemy with force seems ridiculous. The element of surprise would be lost forever. In today’s polarization & obstructionism who knows what could happen. I would at least limit such mass destruction as nuclear & mass destruction can bring upon an enemy. War has changed & is considered as asymmetric these days as ISIS & Islamic Jihad has declared.
These are entities that have already declared war on the United States.
OTOH some would exclaim “good – no wars !” while ignoring the obligation of the military to protect the citizens of the United States.
One question, yet unanswered, is whether war declared upon the US means we are at war with them or at war at all ? Is an undeclared war against the US something we can fight? North Korea is another example strictly national while ISIS is religious XOR based strictly on belief. Viet Nam was a battle against a political ideology –communism!
The interesting word fetishize showed up in the Wikipedia article:
Is the pragmatic & practical being ignored for appearance sake in the name of whatever war is?
One argument for the unconstitutionality of the War Powers Resolution by Philip Bobbitt argues "The power to make war is not an enumerated power" and the notion that to "declare" war is to "commence" war is a "contemporary textual preconception". Bobbitt contends that the Framers of the Constitution believed that statutory authorization was the route by which the United States would be committed to war, and that ’declaration’ was meant for only total wars, as shown by the history of the Quasi-War with France (1798–1800). In general, constitutional powers are not so much separated as "linked and sequenced"; Congress’s control over the armed forces is "structured" by appropriation, while the President commands; thus the act of declaring war should not be fetishized.[clarification needed] Bobbitt also argues that "A democracy cannot ... tolerate secret policies" because they undermine the legitimacy of governmental action.
see Wikipedia on the Viet Nam War: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vietnam_War#Johnson.27s_escalation.2C_1963.E2.80.9369
At the time Lyndon B. Johnson took over the presidency after the death of Kennedy, he had not been heavily involved with policy toward Vietnam, Presidential aide Jack Valenti recalls, "Vietnam at the time was no bigger than a man’s fist on the horizon. We hardly discussed it because it was not worth discussing."
Upon becoming president, however, Johnson immediately had to focus on Vietnam: on 24 November 1963, he said, "the battle against communism ... must be joined ... with strength and determination." The pledge came at a time when the situation in South Vietnam was deteriorating, especially in places like the Mekong Delta, because of the recent coup against Diệm. However, Johnson knew that he had inherited a rapidly deteriorating situation in South Vietnam, believing in the widely accepted arguments that were used for defending the South: Should they retreat or appease, either action would imperil other nations beyond the conflict.
There is no political motivation is in my question … just curiosity of how it felt in that regard.
In my youth I was told by the grown-ups that all generations have wars – hence no surprise!
(3 months after I was born)