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Can the President of USA declare war by himself'

 
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Can the President of USA declare war by himself' - 8/8/2010 7:45:58 AM   
Zecke


Posts: 208
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From: Spain
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Hello to everybody;

Since more than a year, i didnt came into the forums, and since more than two years a dont play WITP; (for medical reasons) its nice to comeback and see that the best game strategy ever made is still very active and growing in popularity.

I remenber it was a OFF TOPIC Thread, but i dont see it, so This question must be in the off topic forums, sorry about this; but i will aprreciate if someone can answerd this question;

The question in fact is; Can the president of united states declare war to another country for example in an public speach?.. I know that the congress of USA has the righ to do it and allow the president to do it, but i was wondering if without congress firts approval, can the president declare, just spontaneously.

I am writing an article about pearl harbour japan attack, and all the information will be great, because i want to know if President Roosvelt did declare war on japan, or he wait until the USA congress approval..

Any help about this question will be great¡¡

Nice to read everybody and see the comunity again.

Post #: 1
RE: Can the President of USA declare war by himself' - 8/8/2010 3:34:17 PM   
vettim89


Posts: 3321
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From: Toledo, Ohio
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Zecke

Hello to everybody;

Since more than a year, i didnt came into the forums, and since more than two years a dont play WITP; (for medical reasons) its nice to comeback and see that the best game strategy ever made is still very active and growing in popularity.

I remenber it was a OFF TOPIC Thread, but i dont see it, so This question must be in the off topic forums, sorry about this; but i will aprreciate if someone can answerd this question;

The question in fact is; Can the president of united states declare war to another country for example in an public speach?.. I know that the congress of USA has the righ to do it and allow the president to do it, but i was wondering if without congress firts approval, can the president declare, just spontaneously.

I am writing an article about pearl harbour japan attack, and all the information will be great, because i want to know if President Roosvelt did declare war on japan, or he wait until the USA congress approval..

Any help about this question will be great¡¡

Nice to read everybody and see the comunity again.




Well that's a sticky question. The simple answer is no. The US Constitution reserves the power to declare war to Congress alone. That said, the president has considerable latitude to undertake military action without a Declaration of War. The US never declared war in Korea, Vietnam, Grenada, Panama, Desert Storm, Somalia, Iraqi Freedom, Afghanistan, etc. Now a lot has changed between now and WWII but even then USN ships were engaged in Neutrality Patrol even though the US was not at war with Germany

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RE: Can the President of USA declare war by himself' - 8/8/2010 3:36:49 PM   
Alfred

 

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President Roosevelt did not have the power to declare war. Only Congress has that power. That is consistent with the constitutional reqirement that any treaty be approved by the Senate. So the specific answer to your question is NO, the President could not just declare war spontaneously.

What commonly leads Europeans to misunderstand the process is that since the Gulf of Tonkin incident and subsequent Congressional resolution (IIRC in 1964) the President has the authority to deploy the military for a limited period before needing the approval of Congress. But that is still not a declaration of war. Nor could the deployment be sustained for any lengthy period of time without the Congress approving the necessary additional budget bills to pay for the additional expenditure.

In fact the last formal declaration of war in the world occurred in 1945 when the Soviet Union declared war on Japan. Avoidance by countries of formally declaring wars is largely to avoid international law stricture.

Alfred

(in reply to Zecke)
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RE: Can the President of USA declare war by himself' - 8/8/2010 8:08:10 PM   
rtrapasso


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quote:


In fact the last formal declaration of war in the world occurred in 1945 when the Soviet Union declared war on Japan.


Not sure this is strictly true... i can still remember the newscast of Manuel Noriega (leader of Panama) declaring war on the United States (and waving around/banging a machete) for emphasis... i am not sure how legal his authority was, but since he was military dictator of Panama, it seemed pretty official... strangely (or perhaps not), i can find no reference to this on Wikipedia.

EDIT: Wikipedia says that the Panamanian legislature had said that a "state of war" existed between the US and Panama... the newscast i saw wasn't from the legislature, but from Noriega himself, and from the translation (and my admittedly poor spanish) he said he declared war on the US (and whacked the flat of his machete on some furniture for emphasis)... i suppose something could have been lost in the translation.

RE-EDIT: This happened (best i can determine) on 15 Dec 1989.

< Message edited by rtrapasso -- 8/8/2010 8:20:37 PM >

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RE: Can the President of USA declare war by himself' - 8/9/2010 12:07:59 AM   
vettim89


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From: Toledo, Ohio
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Have to wonder if some of the subtleties of this matter are lost on us who live in the post-modern era. I think prior to WWI and even up to WWII, what nations said was as important as their actions. To us the outcome of the Munich Conference was a foregone conclusion considering how things played out. At the time though, the Western European Allies took Hitler at his word because that is what nations did at that time.

The intricaies and nuances of international diplomacy are a mystery to those that have not experienced it first hand to this day. A perfect example of this is the US "One China Policy". Try to explain that rationally. Before you do that, come up with a way where it will make sense to a diplomat from the PRC, nationalist China, and say Equador. Bah. More power to those that do this stuff professionally

There was a hot debate on the AE Forum about FDR and PH. I don't want to reopen that debate but would only point out that as strange as it may seem to our modern ears (or post-modern as it were), it really mattered who fired the first shot. Truth be told police officers still do this every day. Gun toting bad guys cannot be shot at by police unless they either fire first or there is iminent danger to innocents.

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RE: Can the President of USA declare war by himself' - 8/9/2010 4:44:54 AM   
Alfred

 

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There is a subtle difference between making a formal declaration of war and stating that a state of war exists. In part this stems from the wording in the UN Charter which does not, contrary to what most people think, actually comprehensively ban war because it expressly allows each signatory the right to defend themselves or operate under Security Council resolution.

To claim that a state of war exists is merely to acknowledge the reality that war like actions are occurring without accepting the responsibility for initiating those actions. It is a way to maintain the legal argument that you were only engaged in self defence action. That legal argument is much harder to make if a formal declaration of war is made which prima facie would contravene international law.

This of course sidesteps the issue of who in Panama would have had the legal authority to declare war, were the proper procedures followed, or whether the translation was accurate. A formal declaration of war entails many more actions than simply uttering the words.

Alfred

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RE: Can the President of USA declare war by himself' - 8/9/2010 9:25:46 AM   
Zecke


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Joined: 1/15/2005
From: Spain
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Wow¡¡ Thank you very much to everybody, it helpfull me a lot,, now i have a good starting point to invistigate in diferent ways, also i will still swinming into the witp and AE forums as mentioned some of you.

Thanks a lot

Regards

(in reply to Alfred)
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RE: Can the President of USA declare war by himself' - 8/9/2010 10:24:03 PM   
steverodgers80

 

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There is a conflict, the president does not need congressional approval to use troops, but only congress can declare war and fund the troops.

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RE: Can the President of USA declare war by himself' - 8/18/2010 8:37:46 PM   
mdiehl

 

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quote:

without congress firts approval, can the president declare, just spontaneously?


The short answer is "no." In practice, US Presidents have avoided that little inconvenience by deploying US forces for the purpose of just dicking around in other nations without declaring war. Of course, the US Congress makes the budgets, so without some sort of Congressional resolution (such as the Gulf of Tonkin resolution), the scale of those presidential adventures must be kept small. That is why the US can dick around in places like Bosnia, Panama, Guatemala, Nicaragua, and Grenada, and get away with it, and why the US doesn't try to dick around directly with major powers.

< Message edited by mdiehl -- 8/18/2010 8:38:11 PM >


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RE: Can the President of USA declare war by himself' - 8/18/2010 9:45:27 PM   
tocaff


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"Dicking around" with major powers would result in political suicide. Unless the USA was attacked the populace wouldn't stand for a major conflict with US loses running at a high level.  

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www.matrixgames.com/forum/tm.asp?m=2080768

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RE: Can the President of USA declare war by himself' - 9/18/2010 6:02:21 PM   
RUDOLF


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The US never declared war in Korea, Vietnam, Grenada, Panama, Desert Storm, Somalia, Iraqi Freedom, Afghanistan.

In Practical terns the US President is far more a King then any European King are today or have been the past 100 years.


The Political power he posess are obsolete, and I find it absourd that 400 Million people can put so much faith into the hands of one single man.
He indeed has a limited power, but it is not the slightest limited compared to what it should be.. Think about it, he can decide what Laws that are passed and not, and he can set the conditions for who lives and dies (through programs like the Phinex Program.. or directlly by saying the name of a political leder or individual that in his wievs poses a thret to the USA).. He can Divide and concur nations, and him personally can pick what Oil companys that are less and more suited to recive contracts in a specific arera (like Bush did..)..

So.. The President is definetlly the closest the modern society has to a 1700 century King.

Ironically the so called "land of the free" are lead by this King, rather then by a parliement.




< Message edited by RUDOLF -- 9/18/2010 6:05:08 PM >

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RE: Can the President of USA declare war by himself' - 9/18/2010 6:38:26 PM   
Alfred

 

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Joined: 9/28/2006
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quote:

ORIGINAL: RUDOLF

The US never declared war in Korea, Vietnam, Grenada, Panama, Desert Storm, Somalia, Iraqi Freedom, Afghanistan.

In Practical terns the US President is far more a King then any European King are today or have been the past 100 years.


The Political power he posess are obsolete, and I find it absourd that 400 Million people can put so much faith into the hands of one single man.
He indeed has a limited power, but it is not the slightest limited compared to what it should be.. Think about it, he can decide what Laws that are passed and not, and he can set the conditions for who lives and dies (through programs like the Phinex Program.. or directlly by saying the name of a political leder or individual that in his wievs poses a thret to the USA).. He can Divide and concur nations, and him personally can pick what Oil companys that are less and more suited to recive contracts in a specific arera (like Bush did..)..

So.. The President is definetlly the closest the modern society has to a 1700 century King.

Ironically the so called "land of the free" are lead by this King, rather then by a parliement.





I take it you were aware of Montesquies (sp) separation of power doctrine before you posted and how that influenced the governmental structure set up by the Founding Fathers.

Alfred

(in reply to RUDOLF)
Post #: 12
RE: Can the President of USA declare war by himself' - 9/18/2010 11:34:49 PM   
RUDOLF


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Joined: 4/29/2010
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Alfred


I take it you were aware of Montesquies (sp) separation of power doctrine before you posted and how that influenced the governmental structure set up by the Founding Fathers.

Alfred



Of Course I was, it does unfortunately not change anything.

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Post #: 13
RE: Can the President of USA declare war by himself' - 9/20/2010 5:22:59 PM   
jwilkerson


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From: San Jose, CA
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quote:

ORIGINAL: RUDOLF


quote:

ORIGINAL: Alfred


I take it you were aware of Montesquies (sp) separation of power doctrine before you posted and how that influenced the governmental structure set up by the Founding Fathers.

Alfred



Of Course I was, it does unfortunately not change anything.



Somehow you guys managed to hide a political discussion on the matrix forums for a while - I'll have to increase my dilligence!


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Post #: 14
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