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Encyclopedia > Declaration of war by the United States

A declaration of war is a formal declaration issued by a national government indicating that a state of war exists between that nation and another. For the United States, Article One, Section Eight of the Constitution says "Congress shall have power to ... declare War;" however, that passage provides no specific format for what form legislation text must have to be considered a "Declaration of War" nor does the Constitution itself use this term. Many have postulated "Declaration(s) of War" must contain that phrase as or within the title. Many oppose that reasoning. The postulate has not been tested in court; however, this article will use the term "formal Declaration of War" to mean Congressional legislation that uses the phrase "Declaration of War" in the title. President Franklin D. Roosevelt signs a declaration of war against the Empire of Japan on December 8, 1941, one day after the attack on Pearl Harbor. ... -1... Wikisource has original text related to this article: Article One of the United States Constitution Article One of the United States Constitution describes the powers of the legislative branch of the United States government, known as Congress, which includes the House of Representatives and the Senate. ... Type Bicameral Houses Senate House of Representatives President of the Senate President pro tempore Dick Cheney, (R) since January 20, 2001 Robert C. Byrd, (D) since January 4, 2007 Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, (D) since January 4, 2007 Members 535 plus 4 Delegates and 1 Resident Commissioner Political... Legislation (or statutory law) is law which has been promulgated (or enacted) by a legislature or other governing body. ...


Despite the constitutional requirement that Congress declare war, in practice, formal Declarations of War have occurred only upon prior request by the President. And contrary to the popular opinion that the framers of the Constitution intended that the President cannot engage in war without an act of Congress, in fact the framers chose the final wording with the intent of "leaving to the Executive the power to repel sudden attacks" without the explicit approval of Congress.[1] However, debate continues as to the legal extent of the President's authority in this regard. The War Powers Resolution of 1973 (Pub.L. 93-148) limits the power of the President to wage war without the approval of the Congress. The United States of America has formally declared war against foreign nations five separate times. Federal courts Supreme Court Circuit Courts of Appeal District Courts Elections Presidential elections Midterm elections Political Parties Democratic Republican Third parties State & Local government Governors Legislatures (List) State Courts Local Government Other countries Atlas  US Government Portal      For other uses, see President of the United States (disambiguation). ... Scene at the Signing of the Constitution of the United States, by Howard Chandler Christy. ... The War Powers Act of 1973 (Pub. ... For the song by James Blunt, see 1973 (song). ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ...

Contents

Formal declarations of war

The table below gives the five separate wars in which the United States has formally declared war against foreign nations. The only country against which the United States has declared war more than once is Germany, against which the United States has declared war twice (though a case could be made for Hungary as a successor state to Austria-Hungary). It has been suggested that this article or section be merged into Succession of states. ... Austria-Hungary, also known as the Dual monarchy (or: the k. ...


In World War II, the Japanese had attacked Pearl Harbor on the previous day, December 7, 1941. On December 11, Hitler and Mussolini declared war on America and the U.S. Congress responded in kind.[2][3] Combatants Allied powers: China France Great Britain Soviet Union United States and others Axis powers: Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Chiang Kai-shek Charles de Gaulle Winston Churchill Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tōjō Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead: 33,000... This article is about the actual attack. ... is the 341st day of the year (342nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ... is the 345th day of the year (346th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...

War or conflict Opponent(s) Initial authorization Votes President Conclusion
Senate House
War of 1812 British Empire June 18, 1812 19-13 79-49 Madison Treaty of Ghent (December 24, 1814)
Mexican-American War Mexico May 11, 1846 40-2 174-14 Polk Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo (February 2, 1848)
Spanish-American War Spain April 24, 1898 42-35 310-6 McKinley Treaty of Paris (December 10, 1898)
World War I Germany April 6, 1917 82-6 373-50 Wilson Treaty of Berlin (August 25, 1921)
Austria-Hungary December 7, 1917 74-0 365-1 Treaty of Trianon (in part)
World War II Japan December 8, 1941 82-0 388-1 F. Roosevelt, Truman Treaty of San Francisco (September 8, 1951)
Germany December 11, 1941 88-0 393-0 Treaty on the Final Settlement with Respect to Germany (September 12, 1990), Treaty of Vienna with Austria (May 15, 1955)
Italy 90-0 399-0 Paris Peace Treaty (February 10, 1947)
Bulgaria June 5, 1942 73-0 357-0
Hungary 360-0
Romania 361-0

Type Upper House President of the Senate Richard B. Cheney, R since January 20, 2001 President pro tempore Robert C. Byrd, D since January 4, 2007 Members 100 Political groups Democratic Party Republican Party Last elections November 7, 2006 Meeting place Senate Chamber United States Capitol Washington, DC United States... Type Bicameral Speaker of the House of Representatives House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi, (D) since January 4, 2007 Steny Hoyer, (D) since January 4, 2007 House Minority Leader John Boehner, (R) since January 4, 2007 Members 435 plus 4 Delegates and 1 Resident Commissioner Political groups Democratic Party Republican Party... This article is about the U.S.–U.K. war. ... For a comprehensive list of the territories that formed the British Empire, see Evolution of the British Empire. ... is the 169th day of the year (170th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For the overture by Tchaikovsky, see 1812 Overture; For the wars, see War of 1812 (USA - United Kingdom) or Patriotic War of 1812 (France - Russia) For the Siberia Airlines plane crashed over the Black Sea on October 4, 2001, see Siberia Airlines Flight 1812 1812 was a leap year starting... For other persons named James Madison, see James Madison (disambiguation). ... Signing of the Treaty of Ghent. ... is the 358th day of the year (359th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1814 (MDCCCXIV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Thursday of the 12-day slower Julian calendar). ... Combatants United States Mexico Commanders Zachary Taylor Winfield Scott Stephen W. Kearney Antonio López de Santa Anna Mariano Arista Pedro de Ampudia José Mariá Flores Strength 78,790 soldiers 25,000–40,000 soldiers Casualties KIA: 1733 Total dead: 13,271 Wounded: 4,152 AWOL: 9,200+ 25,000... is the 131st day of the year (132nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1846 was a common year starting on Thursday (see link for calendar). ... James Knox Polk (November 2, 1795–June 15, 1849) was an American politician and the eleventh U.S. President, serving from March 4, 1845 to March 4, 1849. ... The Mexican Cession (red) and the Gadsden Purchase (orange). ... is the 33rd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1848 (MDCCCXLVIII) was a leap year starting on Saturday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian Calendar (or a leap year starting on Monday of the 12-day slower Julian calendar). ... Belligerents United States Republic of Cuba Philippine Republic Kingdom of Spain Commanders Nelson A. Miles William R. Shafter George Dewey Máximo Gómez Emilio Aguinaldo Patricio Montojo Pascual Cervera Arsenio Linares Manuel Macías y Casado Ramón Blanco y Erenas Casualties and losses 385 KIA USA 5,000... is the 114th day of the year (115th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1898 (MDCCCXCVIII) was a common year starting on Saturday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Monday of the 12-day-slower Julian calendar). ... This article is about the 25th President of the United States; for other people named William McKinley, see William McKinley (disambiguation). ... The Treaty of Paris of 1898, signed on December 10, 1898, ended the Spanish-American War. ... is the 344th day of the year (345th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1898 (MDCCCXCVIII) was a common year starting on Saturday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Monday of the 12-day-slower Julian calendar). ... “The Great War ” redirects here. ... is the 96th day of the year (97th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1917 (MCMXVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar (see link for calendar) or a common year starting on Tuesday of the 13-day slower Julian calendar (see: 1917 Julian calendar). ... Thomas Woodrow Wilson (December 28, 1856—February 3, 1924), was the twenty-eighth President of the United States. ... The term Treaty of Berlin is often used for the separate post-World War I peace accord of August 25, 1921 between the United States and Germany following the U.S. Senates rejection of parts of the 1919 Treaty of Versailles and Warren G. Hardings defeat of League... is the 237th day of the year (238th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1921 (MCMXXI) was a common year starting on Saturday (link will display the full calendar). ... Austria-Hungary, also known as the Dual monarchy (or: the k. ... is the 341st day of the year (342nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1917 (MCMXVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar (see link for calendar) or a common year starting on Tuesday of the 13-day slower Julian calendar (see: 1917 Julian calendar). ... The negotiations on June 4, 1920. ... Combatants Allied powers: China France Great Britain Soviet Union United States and others Axis powers: Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Chiang Kai-shek Charles de Gaulle Winston Churchill Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tōjō Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead: 33,000... is the 342nd day of the year (343rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ... FDR redirects here. ... For the victim of Mt. ... Prime Minister Yoshida Shigeru gives a speech on reconciliation and rapport ) at the San Francisco Peace conference. ... is the 251st day of the year (252nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1951 (MCMLI) was a common year starting on Monday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 345th day of the year (346th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see 1941 (disambiguation). ... The Treaty on the Final Settlement With Respect to Germany is the final peace treaty negotiated between the Federal Republic of Germany, the German Democratic Republic, and the Four Powers which occupied Germany at the end of World War II in Europe: France, the United Kingdom, the United States and... is the 255th day of the year (256th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... This article is about the year. ... Occupation zones in Austria, 1945-1955 The Austrian Independence Treaty (complete form: Treaty for the re-establishment of an independent and democratic Austria, signed in Vienna on the 15 May 1955), more commonly referred to as the Austrian State Treaty (German Staatsvertrag), was signed on May 15, 1955 in Vienna... is the 135th day of the year (136th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1955 (MCMLV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays the 1955 Gregorian calendar). ... The Paris Peace Conference (July 29 to October 15, 1946) resulted in the Paris peace treaties signed on February 10, 1947. ... is the 41st day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1947 (MCMXLVII) was a common year starting on Wednesday (link will display full 1947 calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 156th day of the year (157th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1942 (MCMXLII) was a common year starting on Thursday (the link will display the full 1942 calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ...

Military engagements authorized by Congress

Many times, the United States has engaged in extended military engagements that, while not formally declared wars, were explicitly authorized by Congress, short of a formal declaration of war.

War or conflict Opponent(s) Initial authorization Votes President Conclusion
Senate House
Quasi-War France Act Further to Protect the Commerce of the United States
July 9, 1798
J. Adams Convention of 1800 (Treaty of Mortefontaine)
First Barbary War Barbary States 1801[citation needed] Jefferson
Second Barbary War Barbary States 1815[citation needed] Madison
Raid of slave traffic Africa 1820[citation needed]
Redress for attack on U.S. Navy vessel Paraguay 1859[citation needed] Buchanan
Intervention during the Russian Civil War Bolshevist Russia 1918[citation needed] Wilson
Lebanon crisis of 1958 Rebels 1958[citation needed] Eisenhower
Vietnam War National Liberation Front, later Democratic Republic of Vietnam Gulf of Tonkin Resolution, August 7, 1964 88-2 416-0 Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon American Force withdrew.
Multinational Force in Lebanon Shia and Druze miltias; Syria S.J.R. 159
September 29, 1983
54-46 253-156 Reagan Force withdrew in 1984
Persian Gulf War, also known as Operation Desert Storm Iraq H.R.J. Res. 77
January 12, 1991
52-47 250-183 George H. W. Bush The United Nations Security Council drew up terms for the cease-fire, April 3, 1991
2001 war in Afghanistan, also known as Operation Enduring Freedom Taliban government of Afghanistan and al-Qaida S.J. Res. 23
September 14, 2001
98-0 420-1 George W. Bush Ongoing, disputed
Iraq War, also known as Operation Iraqi Freedom Iraq H.J. Res. 114,
October 16, 2002
77-23 296-133 Ongoing, disputed

Type Upper House President of the Senate Richard B. Cheney, R since January 20, 2001 President pro tempore Robert C. Byrd, D since January 4, 2007 Members 100 Political groups Democratic Party Republican Party Last elections November 7, 2006 Meeting place Senate Chamber United States Capitol Washington, DC United States... Type Bicameral Speaker of the House of Representatives House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi, (D) since January 4, 2007 Steny Hoyer, (D) since January 4, 2007 House Minority Leader John Boehner, (R) since January 4, 2007 Members 435 plus 4 Delegates and 1 Resident Commissioner Political groups Democratic Party Republican Party... The Quasi-War was an undeclared war fought entirely at sea between the United States and France from 1798 to 1801. ... is the 190th day of the year (191st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1798 (MDCCXCVIII) was a common year starting on Monday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Friday of the 11-day slower Julian calendar). ... For other persons named John Adams, see John Adams (disambiguation). ... The Convention of 1800, also known as the Treaty of Mortefontaine, ended the Quasi-War. ... Belligerents United States Sweden(until 1802) Barbary States (Ottoman Empire regencies) Commanders Richard Dale William Eaton Edward Preble Hassan Bey Murad Reis Strength 7 Ships 10 US Marines and Soldiers Christian Mercenaries Arab Mercenaries 4000 Casualties and losses 2 Ships destroyed 2 Marines killed, 3 wounded Christian/Arab Mercenaries killed... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Thomas Jefferson (13 April 1743 N.S.–4 July 1826) was the third President of the United States (1801–09), the principal author of the Declaration of Independence (1776), and one of the most influential Founding Fathers for his promotion of the ideals of Republicanism in the United States. ... Combatants United States British Empire (from 1815) Barbary states: Algiers Tripoli Tunis Commanders Stephen Decatur, Jr. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... For other persons named James Madison, see James Madison (disambiguation). ... A world map showing the continent of Africa Africa is the worlds second-largest and second most-populous continent, after Asia. ... The United States Navy (USN) is the branch of the United States armed forces responsible for naval operations. ... For other persons named James Buchanan, see James Buchanan (disambiguation). ... Combatants Local Soviet powers led by Russian SFSR and Red Army Chinese mercenaries White Movement Central Powers (1917-1918): Austria-Hungary Ottoman Empire German Empire Allied Intervention: (1918-1922) Japan Czechoslovakia Greece  United States  Canada Serbia Romania UK  France Foreign volunteers: Polish Italian Local nationalist movements, national states, and decentralist... Bolshevist Russia is a common term that refers to the Bolshevik side in the Russian Civil War, or more specifically the Russian government between the October Revolution (November 7, 1917) and the constitution of the Soviet Union (December 30, 1922). ... Thomas Woodrow Wilson (December 28, 1856—February 3, 1924), was the twenty-eighth President of the United States. ... The Lebanon crisis of 1958 was a Lebanese political crisis caused by political and religious tensions in the country. ... Dwight David Ike Eisenhower (October 14, 1890–March 28, 1969), American soldier and politician, was the 34th President of the United States (1953–1961) and supreme commander of the Allied forces in Europe during World War II, with the rank of General of the Army. ... Combatants Republic of Vietnam United States Republic of Korea Thailand Australia New Zealand The Philippines National Front for the Liberation of South Vietnam Democratic Republic of Vietnam People’s Republic of China Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea Strength US 1,000,000 South Korea 300,000 Australia 48,000... Viet Cong (NLF) flag The Viet Cong, also known as the National Front for the Liberation of Southern Vietnam (Vietnamese Mặt Trận Dân Tá»™c Giải Phóng Miền Nam), VC, or the National Liberation Front (NLF), was an insurgent (partisan) organization fighting the Republic... The Democratic Republic of Vietnam (Vietnamese Việt Nam Dân Chủ Cộng Hòa), also known as North Vietnam, was founded by Ho Chi Minh and was recognized by China and the USSR in 1950. ... The Gulf of Tonkin Resolution was a joint resolution of the U.S. Congress passed in August 1964 in direct response to a minor naval engagement known as the Gulf of Tonkin Incident. ... is the 219th day of the year (220th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Also Nintendo emulator: 1964 (emulator). ... There have been several John Kennedys: John F. Kennedy, American president John F. Kennedy, Jr. ... Lyndon Baines Johnson (August 27, 1908–January 22, 1973), often referred to as LBJ, was an American politician. ... Nixon redirects here. ... The Multinational Force in Lebanon (also MNF) was an international peacekeeping force created in 1982 and sent to Lebanon to oversee the withdrawal of the Palestinian Liberation Organization. ... Shia may refer to a denomination of Islam, or related items, such as: Shia Islam, the second largest denomination of Islam, after Sunni Islam. ... Religions Druzism Scriptures Rasail al-hikmah (Epistles of Wisdom), Quran Languages Arabic. ... is the 272nd day of the year (273rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For the Jimi Hendrix song, see 1983. ... Reagan redirects here. ... For other uses, see Iraq war (disambiguation). ... is the 12th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1991 (MCMXCI) was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will display full calendar) of the Gregorian Calendar. ... George Herbert Walker Bush (born June 12, 1924) was the 41st President of the United States, serving from 1989 to 1993. ... “Security Council” redirects here. ... is the 93rd day of the year (94th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1991 (MCMXCI) was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will display full calendar) of the Gregorian Calendar. ... For other uses of War in Afghanistan, see War in Afghanistan. ... Combatants United States, Poland, France, Canada, Pakistan, India, Australia, United Kingdom, Germany, Netherlands, New Zealand, Philippines (in the Philippines theatre only), Northern Alliance, Italy, Czech Republic, Hungary, Ethiopia, Somalia, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Croatia, Albania, Macedonia, Romania, Portugal, Bulgaria, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Georgia Taliban, al-Qaeda, Abu Sayyaf, Jemaah... The Taliban (Pashto: - , also anglicised as Taleban) are a Sunni Islamist and Pashtun nationalist movement[2] that ruled most of Afghanistan from 1996 until 2001, when their leaders were removed from power by a cooperative military effort between the Northern Alliance and NATO countries. ... Al-Qaeda (Arabic: القاعدة, the foundation or the base) is the name given to a worldwide network of militant Islamist organizations under the leadership of Osama bin Laden. ... Note: AUMF may refer to several authorizations granted by the United States Congress. ... is the 257th day of the year (258th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... This article is about the year. ... George Walker Bush (born July 6, 1946) is the forty-third and current President of the United States of America, originally inaugurated on January 20, 2001. ... For other uses, see Iraq war (disambiguation). ... NOONE CARES Headline text The Joint Resolution to Authorize the Use of United States Armed Forces Against Iraq (H.J.Res. ... is the 289th day of the year (290th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Also see: 2002 (number). ...

United Nations resolutions

The Korean War was not a war authorized by the U.S. Congress. President Harry S. Truman cited authority under United Nations resolutions. Major US Military involvement began with Task Force Smith on July 5, 1950. A cease fire agreement was signed on July 27, 1953; however no formal treaty has been signed to this date. Belligerents United Nations: Republic of Korea Australia Belgium Canada Colombia Ethiopia France Greece Luxembourg Netherlands New Zealand Philippines South Africa Thailand Turkey United Kingdom United States Naval Support and Military Servicing/Repairs: Japan Medical staff: Denmark Italy Norway India Sweden DPR Korea PR China Soviet Union Commanders Syngman Rhee Chung... For other persons named Harry Truman, see Harry Truman (disambiguation). ... UN redirects here. ... The Korean War (Korean: 한국전쟁), from June 25, 1950 to July 27, 1953, was a conflict between North Korea and South Korea. ... is the 186th day of the year (187th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1950 (MCML) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 208th day of the year (209th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1953 (MCMLIII) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will display full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ...


Other undeclared wars

On at least 125 occasions, the President has acted without prior express military authorization from Congress.[4] These include instances in which the United States fought in Korea in 1950, the Philippine-American War from 1898-1903, and in Nicaragua in 1927. This article is about the Korean civilization. ... Belligerents United States Philippine Constabulary Philippine Scouts First Philippine Republic several groups post-1902 Commanders William McKinley Theodore Roosevelt Emilio Aguinaldo Miguel Malvar several unofficial leaders post-1902 Strength 126,000 soldiers[1] First Philippine Republic: 80,000 soldiers Casualties and losses ~5,000-7,000[1][2] ~12,000...


The United States' longest war was fought between approximately 1840 and 1886 against the Apache Nation. During that entire 46-year period, there were never more than 90 days of "peace." For other uses, see Apache (disambiguation). ...


At least 28 conflicts and campaigns comprise the Indian Wars. These conflicts began with Europeans immigrating to North America long before the establishment of the United States of America. For the purpose of this discussion, the Indian Wars are defined as conflicts with the United States of America. They begin as one front in the American Revolutionary War in 1775 and are generally agreed upon as concluding with the surrender of the Apache chief Geronimo in 1886. For wars involving India, see Military history of India. ... Motto: (traditional) In God We Trust (official, 1956–present) Anthem: The Star-Spangled Banner Capital Washington, D.C. Largest city New York City Official language(s) None at the federal level; English de facto Government Federal Republic  - President George W. Bush (R)  - Vice President Dick Cheney (R) Independence - Declared - Recognized... This article is about military actions only. ... For other uses, see Geronimo (disambiguation). ...


The American Civil War was not a true war in the sense that the Union Government held the position that secession from the Union was illegal and military force was used to restore the union by defeating in battle the military forces of the illegally rebelling states. No Southern ambassador or diplomat was accorded any status by the Union so an armistice or peace treaty was never an option because that would legitimize the Confederacy as an actual Nation. The legal right for armed force lay with the Constitution of the United States, which the Union interpreted as unbreakable. The actions of the Southern states were therefore illegal (according to the Union) because they were attempting to drop the Union as their form of Government, which is considered rebellion or insurrection.


The War Powers Resolution

In 1973, following the withdrawal of most American troops from the Vietnam War, a debate emerged about the extent of presidential power in deploying troops without a declaration of war. A compromise in the debate was reached with the War Powers Resolution. This act clearly defined how many soldiers could be deployed by the President of the United States and for how long. It also required formal reports by the President to Congress regarding the status of such deployments, and limited the total amount of time that American forces could be employed without a formal declaration of war. The War Powers Act of 1973 (Pub. ...


Although the constitutionality of the act has never been tested, it is usually followed, most notably during the Grenada Conflict, the Panamanian Conflict, the Somalia Conflict, the Gulf War, and the Iraq War. The only exception was President Clinton's use of U.S. troops in the 78-day NATO air campaign against Serbia during the Kosovo War.[citation needed] In all other cases, the President asserted the constitutional authority to commit troops without the necessity of Congressional approval, but in each case the President received Congressional authorization that satisfied the provisions of the War Powers Act. Combatants  United States  Antigua and Barbuda  Barbados  Dominica  Jamaica  Saint Lucia  Saint Vincent and the Grenadines  Grenada  Cuba Commanders Ronald Reagan Joseph Metcalf H. Norman Schwarzkopf Hudson Austin Pedro Tortolo Strength 7,300 Grenada: 1,500 regulars Cuba: about 722 (mostly military engineers)[1] Casualties 19 killed; 116 wounded[2... Combatants United States Panama Commanders General Carl W. Stiner Manuel Noriega Strength 27,684+ 3,000+ Casualties 23 Dead, 324 Wounded 450 Military, 200-4,000 Civilian U.S. Army 7th Infantry Division (light) soldiers prepare to take La Comandancia in the El Chorrillo neighborhood of Panama City, December 1989. ... For other uses, see Iraq war (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Iraq war (disambiguation). ... Anthem:  Serbia() on the European continent()  —  [] Capital (and largest city) Belgrade Official languages Serbian Recognised regional languages Hungarian, Slovak, Romanian, Croatian, Rusyn 1 Albanian 2 Demonym Serbian Government Parliamentary Democracy  -  President Boris Tadić  -  Prime Minister Vojislav KoÅ¡tunica    -  First state 7th century   -  Serbian Kingdom3 1217   -  Serbian Empire 1345   -  Independence lost... For other uses, see Kosovo (disambiguation). ...


Controversy regarding U.S. declarations of war

Those who oppose waging war without declaration point to Article I of the Constitution, which reads The Congress shall have the power to declare war., as well as the Tenth Amendment which limits Congress to those powers specifically enumerated in the Constitution. For Ireland, see Tenth Amendment of the Constitution of Ireland. ...


In the case of smaller conflicts not requiring large commitments of manpower and money, some people may believe that precedents have already been set for acting without the need for declarations of war.[citation needed] In the case of major conflicts, however, debate is centered around the aforesaid words of the United States Constitution.


Those who believe that formal declarations of war are not necessary, argue that since the Constitution expressly prohibits the states from engaging in war without consent of Congress unless actually invaded or in imminent danger, that if a similar prohibition had been intended for the President, then such words would have also been written to effect it.[citation needed] They also point to the military connotations of the phrases engaging in war (used in the aforesaid prohibition) and levying war (used in the definition of treason) as opposed to the diplomatic connotations of the phrase declare war. Further historical arguments point to the decisions to not issue a formal declaration of war preceding either the Civil War or the Revolutionary War, the latter decision being made by a Continental Congress comprising a number of those who went on to write the Constitution. Moreover, the term "Declaration of War" is not, in fact, mentioned by the US Constitution. Instead the Constitution says "Congress shall have the power to ... declare War, ..." without defining the form such declarations will take. Therefore, many have argued congressionally passed authorizations to use military force are "Declarations of War."


There are also diplomatic reasons for a dislike of "declaring war" on a country, as it can often be perceived as holding an entire nation responsible for the actions of a few of its citizens.[citation needed] In the case of the most recent public opposition, those who support such actions have noted that, in the case of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, there was no 'target' for a legal declaration of war, rather political groups or individuals. On the other hand, many argue that since an invading army seeks to, or at least actually does, occupy and cause havoc to an entire target country and its population (as opposed to the target political groups or individuals), the aforementioned justifications are tenuous at best. For other uses of the term, see Iraq war (disambiguation) The 2003 invasion of Iraq (also called the 2nd or 3rd Persian Gulf War) began on March 20, 2003, when forces belonging primarily to the United States and the United Kingdom invaded Iraq arguably without the explicit backing of the...


Many against formal declarations of war also argue that such declarations "acknowledge sovereignty" of a target government often contended by the United States to be an illegitimate regime.[citation needed] By declaring war, the United States must acknowledge diplomatically that the target of hostilities are, in fact, the recognized leaders of the country with which the war is declared, therefore often weakening the argument for "liberating" a people of the said country from a tyrannical or illegitimate regime. However, the historical record disagrees somewhat on this point.[citation needed] The Barbary Coast War was clearly waged against a political entity not regarded as the legitimate government of its nation of operation; the Border War, quietly declared as it was, was waged against a single person, Pancho Villa.[citation needed] Needless to say, in both instances many hundreds if not thousands of people neither belonging to a political entity nor being Pancho Villa also died in the event. (It should be noted that in both of the above-cited cases, Congress did not actually declare war.) Furthermore, it is sometimes argued that there is nothing particularly wrong with acknowledging diplomatically that a target government is actually in power, be it through legitimate means or not. Belligerents United States Sweden(until 1802) Barbary States (Ottoman Empire regencies) Commanders Richard Dale William Eaton Edward Preble Hassan Bey Murad Reis Strength 7 Ships 10 US Marines and Soldiers Christian Mercenaries Arab Mercenaries 4000 Casualties and losses 2 Ships destroyed 2 Marines killed, 3 wounded Christian/Arab Mercenaries killed... For the Filipino boxer, see Francisco Guilledo. ...


Current status of the U.S. debate

Extremely heated debate developed in the United States beginning on or around September 11, 2001. Opponents of the uses of military force since began to argue, chiefly, that the Iraq War was unconstitutional, because it lacked a clear declaration of war, and was waged over the objection of a significantly sized demographic in the United States. The World Trade Center on fire The September 11, 2001 attacks were a series of coordinated terrorist attacks against the United States on September 11, 2001. ...


Instead of formal war declarations, the United States Congress has begun issuing authorizations of force. Such authorizations have included the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution that greatly increased American participation in the Vietnam War, and the recent "Authorization of the Use of Military Force" (AUMF) resolution that started the War in Iraq. Some question the legality of these authorizations of force. Many who support declarations of war argue that they keep administrations honest by forcing them to lay out their case to the American people while, at the same time, honoring the constitutional role of the United States Congress. The Gulf of Tonkin Resolution was a joint resolution of the U.S. Congress passed in August 1964 in direct response to a minor naval engagement known as the Gulf of Tonkin Incident. ...


Those who oppose requiring formal declarations of war argue that AUMFs satisfy constitutional requirements and have an established historical precedent (see Quasi-War). Furthermore, some have argued that the constitutional powers of the president as commander-in-chief invest him with broad powers specific to "waging" and "commencing" war. The Quasi-War was an undeclared war fought entirely at sea between the United States and France from 1798 to 1801. ...


The February 6, 2006, testimony of Alberto Gonzales to the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing on Wartime Executive Power and the National Security Agency's Surveillance Authority, however indicates otherwise:

GONZALES: There was not a war declaration, either in connection with Al Qaida or in Iraq. It was an authorization to use military force. I only want to clarify that, because there are implications. Obviously, when you talk about a war declaration, you're possibly talking about affecting treaties, diplomatic relations. And so there is a distinction in law and in practice. And we're not talking about a war declaration. This is an authorization only to use military force.

The courts have consistently refused to intervene in this matter -- examples being Holmes v. United States and United States v. O'Brien -- and in practice presidents have the power to commit forces with congressional approval but without a declaration of war. Holding Court membership Case opinions Holmes v. ... Holding A criminal prohibition against burning draft cards did not violate the First Amendment, because its effect on speech was only incidental, and it was justified by the significant government interest in maintaining an efficient and effective military draft system. ...


See also

NOONE CARES Headline text The Joint Resolution to Authorize the Use of United States Armed Forces Against Iraq (H.J.Res. ... President Franklin D. Roosevelt signs a declaration of war against the Empire of Japan on December 8, 1941, one day after the attack on Pearl Harbor. ... This article is about the U.S.-led campaign against the spread of terrorism. ... From 1776 to 2007, there have been hundreds of instances of the deployment of United States military forces abroad and domestically. ...

References

  1. ^ The Debates in the Federal Convention of 1787 reported by James Madison : August 17,The Avalon Project, Yale Law School, retrieved 13 Feb 2008
  2. ^ BBC News, On This Day
  3. ^ Whereas the Government of Germany has formally declared war against the government and the people of the United States of America... the state of war between the United States and the Government of Germany which has thus been thrust upon the United States is hereby formally declared. The War Resolution
  4. ^ THE PRESIDENT'S CONSTITUTIONAL AUTHORITY TO CONDUCT MILITARY OPERATIONS AGAINST TERRORISTS AND NATIONS SUPPORTING THEM

External links


  Results from FactBites:
 
The Avalon Project : The German Declaration of War with the United States : December 11, 1941 (600 words)
German Declaration of War with the United States : December 11, 1941
Thomsen said that Germany considers herself in a state of war with the United States.
Although Germany on her part has strictly adhered to the rules of international law in her relations with the United States during every period of the present war, the Government of the United States from initial violations of neutrality has finally proceeded to open acts of war against Germany.
War Powers Act or how to avoid declaring war on another nation! (1574 words)
A declaration of war by the United States is the statement of purpose traditionally requested by the President of the United States and granted by United States Congress to engage military force against another nation.
Those who believe that formal declarations of war are not necessary say that an absence of a formal declaration does not necessary mean that a military conflict will be chaotic and unlawful; in many cases the rules of war are now well enough accepted to make formal declarations unnecessary.
A significant percentage of Americans were found by polls to favor formal declarations of war against the Taliban regime of Afghanistan and the Al Qaeda terror network; their requests were largely pushed aside as "uninformed" by the White House.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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