Proposed legislation would put check on President’s use of military force.
An interfaith group of advocates for peace gathered in Detroit’s Central United Methodist church Monday in an effort to steer the nation away from war with Iran. President Trump pulled out of a multilateral denuclearization agreement and reinstituted sanctions on Iran. Last month, he considered responding to the downing of a US drone with an attack on Iranian military targets but called it off at the last minute.
“Leaving the nuclear agreement was wrong, irresponsible and shameful. It was an insult to American integrity and global trust. It caused more political isolation for the administration and more sympathy for Iran for abiding by the Nuclear Agreement,” said Imam Mohammad Ali Elahi. “Obviously if we ever mean to win the minds and hearts of a great and civilized nation, the way is not sanctions and starvation.”
The responsibility to declare war supposedly lies with congress but the Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) that passed in the wake of 9/11 gives the president broad power to attack without their approval. This has many on Capitol Hill worried by Trump’s recent actions. Rep. Andy Levin is one of them.
"We must learn from our past and stop the President's headlong rush into another war in the Middle East. Our country cannot afford another debacle like what happened in Iraq,” said Rep. Levin. “That's why I’ve introduced the AUMF Clarification Act and helped write an amendment to Congress’s must-pass defense bill to prohibit an unauthorized attack on Iran. The President has taken us within minutes of another disastrous war that will cost American lives—we have no time to waste."
“Whether it is missiles or sanctions, the most vulnerable are always the ones who suffer most in these conflicts. We are capable of so much more when we don’t get ourselves locked into an endless cycle of violence,” said Rev. Dr. Jill Hardt Zundel. “I would have hoped we’d learned to avoid wars launched under false pretenses from our experiences in Iraq and Afghanistan.”