Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) is no happy camper when it comes to American foreign policy. Fresh off of a narrow defeat to partially stop President Trump’s Saudi weapons deal, Paul rallied against Syrian military intervention during a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing this afternoon.
“Are we going to limit the president’s power? Are we going to take back our power? I think a five-year sunset, is–you know, and I don’t mean to be mean, but–is essentially nothing. I mean, we’ve had millions of people die in five-year wars before, so I think it’s — it’s virtually meaningless,” Paul said.
Paul believes that proposed Senate’s reforms would do very little to change the status quo. Instead, they are mere token measures that would allow the military-industrial complex to continue its hegemonic policies abroad while Americans are lulled back to sleep in the homeland. Paul is especially livid about the abuse of the Authorization of Use of Military Force signed by George W. Bush in 2001, which has been used as an open-ended mandate for war in the Middle East by the federal government ever since.
“The document, as Senator Cardin said, was very, very specific to 9/11,” Paul said. “And we’ve had people just saying, “you can do anything you want” now for 15 years… The practical question is, is doing anything you want, killing every perceived enemy and every perceived leader or chieftain of five people in some misbegotten village, is it helping?”
Paul believes that it is not helping in any conceivable way. In addition to America being the cause of many humanitarian crises throughout the Middle East, the wars are unauthorized and have made a complete mockery of the Constitution.
“There’s nothing in the War Powers Act about unauthorized war, because we’re not supposed to be doing it… There’s supposed to be no war without an AUMF. We have been illegally at war for a long time now. This is illegal war, at this point,” Paul said.
Paul closed out his statements by mentioning that the foreign policy of endless war is all but assured to end in complete disaster for the American republic.
“For a hundred years, they’ll be talking about the time the Americans came and killed the people and killed our women and children. For a hundred years, they’re going to be talking about the Saudis dropping bombs on a funeral procession. That does not go away. These people remember the battle of Karbala in 680 A.D. They have long memories,” Paul said.
Even if it fell on deaf ears, Paul’s eloquent words demonstrated that his commitment to pursuing a non-interventionist foreign policy will not waver.