The Original AUMF

Part 2 —the untaught history of America.

Some think that the Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) was when the US retaliated for the 9/11 attacks on the US….if you think that then you are wrong….off by 200 years…..

First of all, what is the AUMF?

Basically it is a law from Congress that allows the use of military might against an ‘enemy’……

Now to the very first AUMF.

The year was 1801……

According to the United States Constitution, if a sitting president wants to use the U.S. military against another nation, the office holder must first ask Congress for a specific declaration of war.

The United States has only actually declared war a handful of times. Since its ratification, the Constitutional function of war has only been used against Great Britain in 1812, Mexico in 1846, Spain in 1898, the Triple Alliance powers in World War I and the Axis Powers in World War II. But the U.S. has engaged in more than 102 conflicts since its inception.

The problem with a declaration of war (for Congress) is that a state of war gives the Office of the President incredible power under the Constitution. Instead of doing that, legislators would prefer to give the president limited power using an Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF).

It’s the kind of legislation that has allowed presidents since George W. Bush to wage war for the past 20 years. But Authorizations for the use of military force are nothing new, though the names the U.S. government uses for it might be. The first AUMF-style authorization came before the first declared war, skirting the Constitution and allowing President Thomas Jefferson to bring the U.S. Navy to bear against American enemies.

Pirates from the coastal states of North Africa terrorized the Mediterranean Sea for centuries, even while the United States was still a colony of Great Britain. Ships from nations who refused to pay tribute to the Barbary Coast rulers were targeted for attack, their cargoes seized, and the crews sold into slavery.

America’s first authorization for use of military force came in 1801

So you see the AUMF is not something new….presidents have been using it for a couple of centuries….especially for wars that are not needed.

Class Dismissed!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

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