POLITICO reports that a group of progressive Democratic lawmakers responded furiously yesterday (1/11/2024) to President Joe Biden’s move, in cooperation with the United Kingdom, Canada, Bahrain, Australia and the Netherlands, to launch retaliatory strikes against the Iranian-backed Houthis in Yemen without first seeking congressional approval.

Several lawmakers argued that the move violated the U.S. Constitution, Article I, Section 8.[11] granting only the Congress the right to declare war, as President Biden notified Congress of the forthcoming military action, but did not request its approval.

Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal (D-WA), who chairs the Progressive Caucus, wrote on social media that “this is an unacceptable violation of the Constitution” and Progressive Congresspersons Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) and Cori Bush (D-MO) echoed this sentiment, decrying “endless war” and labeling President Biden’s actions unconstitutional.

On the other hand, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) released a statement saying that he welcomed the U.S. strikes and that the use of force was overdue.  “I am hopeful these operations mark an enduring shift in the Biden Administration’s approach to Iran and its proxies.  To restore deterrence and change Iran’s calculus, Iranian leaders themselves must believe that they will pay a meaningful price unless they abandon their worldwide campaign of terror.”

The POLITICO report may be read in full HERE.

My brothers and sisters, presidents have ignored Congressional approval pursuant to Article I of the U.S. Constitution for decades and decades.

The justification is typically that the sought-after military action is not intended to be the start of a formal war, but to send a message to another country or organization that its actions will not be tolerated, and accordingly, avoid an unnecessary war.  Justification also tends to include the view that operational security, timing and effectiveness are necessary to assure military success and to sufficiently protect U.S. assets – including military personnel.  All of this would be advertised to the world during congressional debate.

Regardless, the U.S. military can not simply stand by while its troops, bases and equipment (e.g., ships), and international shipping, are being attacked.  This is why on December 18, 2023, President Biden announced the formation of “Operation Prosperity Guardian” in response to Houthi attacks.  The current perception of military weakness and lack of political will within the U.S. tends to embolden terrorists (such as the Houthis) to continue threatening our military and international commerce unless there is an actual price to be paid for such actions.

Let’s continue to pray for God’s wisdom and that His hand of protection would rest upon our military and civilian leaders, and our country – and upon our allies as well (see 1 Timothy 2:1-3).

It’s easy to “close ourselves off” from the world in our internet-driven bubbles, even as much of the world is in complete turmoil; however, even in the face of evil, we should remind ourselves that the battle belongs to the Lord (see 1 Samuel 17:46-47) and that our Victor, Christ Jesus (see 1 Corinthians 15:56-57), has already prevailed at the cross of Calvary (see Hebrews 12:1-3)!  He has overcome the world (see John 16:32-33)!  Praise the Lord!

Here are the above-referenced scriptures:

1 Timothy 2:1-3 (ESV)
“First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions [emphasis mine], that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way.  This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior…”.

1 Samuel 17:46-47 (NKJV)
David and Goliath
“This day the Lord will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you and take your head from you.  And this day I will give the carcasses of the camp of the Philistines to the birds of the air and the wild beasts of the earth, that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel.  Then all this assembly shall know that the Lord does not save with sword and spear; for the battle is the Lord’s [emphasis mine], and He will give you into our hands.”

1 Corinthians 15:56-57 (NKJV)
Jesus is our Victor!
“The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Hebrews 12:1-3 (NKJV)
The Race of Faith
“Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross [emphasis mine], despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”

John 16:32-33 (ESV)
“Behold, the hour is coming, indeed it has come, when you will be scattered, each to his own home, and will leave [M]e alone.  Yet I am not alone, for the Father is with [M]e.  I have said these things to you, that in [M]e you may have peace.  In the world you will have tribulation.  But take heart; I have overcome the world [emphasis mine].”

And, let’s always remember to daily put on the whole armor of God:

Ephesians 6:11-13 (NKJV)
“Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.  For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, [and] against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.  Therefore[,] take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.”

Praise Jesus forevermore!

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