News / USA

White House Responds to Criticisms on Libya

President Obama (r) and Speaker of the U.S. House of Reprentatives John Boehner (file photos)
President Obama (r) and Speaker of the U.S. House of Reprentatives John Boehner (file photos)

The White House pushed back Thursday on criticisms from members of Congress of a lengthy explanation sent to Capitol Hill about the legality of U.S. involvement in military operations in Libya.  

In its more than 30 page submission to Congress, the White House again asserted that the War Powers Resolution of 1973 does not apply to U.S. involvement in what is now a largely NATO-led military operation in Libya.

The 1973 War Powers Resolution prohibits the military from being involved in actions for more than 60 days without congressional authorization, with a 30-day extension.   Operations in Libya are nearing the 90 day point.

The administration document contained details about a range of operations U.S. forces are involved in, including Libya but also Afghanistan, Iraq as well as peacekeeping operations in Kosovo.

President Obama described U.S. involvement in Libya as a supporting role, though he mentioned strikes by unmanned aerial vehicles, or drones, in support of NATO operations protecting civilians from actions by forces loyal to Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi.

On Thursday, Republican Speaker of the U.S. House of Reprentatives John Boehner made clear he doesn't accept the White House explanation that the Libya mission is not endangering the U.S. military and therefore does not require formal approval by Congress.

"The White House says there are no hostilities taking place," said Boehner. "Yet we have got drone attacks underway, we are spending $10 million a day, we're part of an effort to drop bombs on Gadhafi's compounds.  It doesn't past the straight face test in my view that we are not in the midst of hostilities."

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said Mr. Obama "simply disagrees", and revealed that the president, who is a constitutional lawyer, was directly involved in drafting the legal explanation and in Carney's words, "owns this document."

Carney repeated the administration's position that it is in compliance with the War Powers Resolution, because no U.S. ground troops are involved, and U.S. forces are not engaged in the kind of hostilities envisioned by the resolution.

On a potential step by Congressman Boehner to pursue legislative steps to cut off funding for Libyan operations, Carney urged lawmakers not to "send mixed messages" about the importance of a mission the White House asserts has so far been successful.

"That success is something that members of Congress, even those who have concern, would acknowledge, and the importance of continuing that mission is I think something that a majority of Congress supports," said Carney.

House Minority Leader, Democrat Nancy Pelosi, said she was still reviewing the classified portion of the administration's report, but said she is satisfied with Mr. Obama's explanation of the limited nature of current U.S. involvement in Libya.

"I believe the limited nature of this engagement allows the president to go forward," said Pelosi.

The White House said again on Thursday that the administration would support a resolution by or one similar to a measure Republican Senator John McCain and Democrat John Kerry plan to introduce that would authorize limited use of military force in Libya.

McCain on Thursday challenged what he called a "confusing" approach by the administration on Libya, but urged lawmakers including members of his own party not to withdraw support for the NATO operation.

"The goal for all of us here in this body, Democrats and Republican alike, should not be to cut and run from Libya, but to assure that we succeed," said McCain.

Senator McCain said the bipartisan resolution would be introduced soon, adding it is important for the U.S. Senate to "go on record" as authorizing operations in Libya, which he said do constitute a "state of hostilities."  

You May Like

As AIDS Epidemic Matures, Workplaces Adapt

Issue of AIDS in workplace is one of many social issues being discussed at the 20th International Aids Conference in Australia More

Is Air Travel Safe?

Aviation expert says despite tragic losses of Malaysian Airlines flights 370 and 17, industry experienced lowest fatality rate in recorded history last year More

100 Days Later, Nigerian Girls Still Held

Activists holding rallies in Nigeria and several other countries to mark 100th day of captivity for more than 200 schoolgirls being held by Boko Haram More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Formi
X
July 22, 2014 10:26 AM
Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.
Video

Video Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Age

Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.
Video

Video Chicago’s Argonne Lab Developing Battery of the Future

In 2012, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science awarded a $120 million grant to a new technology center focused on battery development - headquartered at Argonne National Laboratory in suburban Chicago, Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there scientists are making the next technological breakthroughs in energy storage.
Video

Video In NW Pakistan, Army Offensive Causes Massive Number of Displaced

Pakistan’s army offensive in North Waziristan has resulted in the large-scale displacement of the local population. VOA's Ayaz Gul reports from northwest Pakistan where authorities say around 80 percent of the estimated 1 million internally displaced persons [IDPs] have settled in Bannu district, while much of the remaining 20 percent are scattered in nearby cities.
Video

Video Kurdish Peshmerga Force Secures Kirkuk, Its Oil

The Kurdistan regional government has sent its Peshmerga troops into the adjacent province of Kirkuk to drive out insurgents, and to secure the area's rich oil fields. By doing this, the regional government has added a fourth province to the three it officially controls. The oil also provides revenue that could make an independent Kurdistan economically strong. VOA’s Jeffrey Young went out with the Peshmerga and filed this report.
Video

Video Malaysia Reeling: Second Air Disaster in Four Months

Malaysia is reeling from the second air disaster in four months involving the country’s flag carrier. Flight 340 vanished in March and despite an extensive search, no debris has been found. And on Thursday, Flight 17, likely hit by a surface-to-air missile, came apart over eastern Ukraine. The two incidents together have left more than 500 people dead. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Kuala Lumpur.

AppleAndroid