Ron Paul
1999 Ron Paul Chapter 40

Kosovo War Is Illegal

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5 May 1999

The SPEAKER pro tempore (Mrs. NORTHUP). Under a previous order of the House, the gentleman from Texas (Mr. PAUL) is recognized for 5 minutes.

1999 Ron Paul 40:1
Mr. PAUL. Madam Speaker, it is time to stop the bombing. NATO’s war against Serbia left the Congress and the American people in a quandary, and no wonder. The official excuse for NATO’s bombing war is that Milosevic would not sign a treaty drawn up by NATO, which would have taken Kosovo away from the Serbs after the KLA demanded independence from Serbia.

1999 Ron Paul 40:2
This war is immoral because Serbia did not commit aggression against us. We were not attacked and there has been no threat to our national security. This war is illegal. It is undeclared. There has been no congressional authorization and no money has been appropriated for it. The war is pursued by the U.S. under NATO’s terms, yet it is illegal even according to NATO’s treaty as well as the U.N. charter. The internationalists do not even follow their own laws and do not care about the U.S. Constitution.

1999 Ron Paul 40:3
The humanitarian excuse for the war is suspect. Economic interests are involved, as they so often are in most armed conflicts. NATO’s vaguely stated goals have not been achieved. For the most part, the opposite has. Let me give my colleagues a few examples.

1999 Ron Paul 40:4
Number one. Milosevic is now more powerful than ever; the Serb’s more unified.

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Number two. Russia is now alienated from the west. Their hold on a nuclear arsenal is ignored. Along with Russia’s economic desperation and political instability, NATO is pushing Russia into a new alliance against the west.

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Number three. Innocent Serbs and Albanian citizens are routinely being killed by our bombs.

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Number four. Civilian targets are deliberately hit, including water, power and sewer plants, fuel storage and TV stations.

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Number five. An economic embargo is now being instituted to starve children and prevent medications from reaching the sick, just as we have been doing for a decade against Iraq.

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Number six. This war institutionalizes foreign control over our troops. Tony Blair now tells Bill Clinton how to fight a NATO war, while the U.S. taxpayers pay for it.

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Number seven. Greater instability in the region has resulted.

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Number eight. We are once again supporting Osama bin Laden and his friends in the KLA.

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Number nine. We have bombed Bulgaria. By mistake, of course. Sorry.

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Number ten. Our weapons are being depleted, our troops spread too thin, resulting in further undermining of our national defense.

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Number eleven. Billions of dollars are thrown down a rat hole and Congress is about to vote for more.

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Number twelve. The massive refugee problem, which is essentially a result of NATO’s bombing, continues.

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Up until now, general defense funds have been spent to wage this war without permission. The President wants to catch up and is asking for $6 billion, but Congress, in its infinite wisdom, wants to give him $13 billion for a war Congress rejects. Once we directly fund the war we will be partners in this mis-adventure. The votes last week were symbolic. They had no effect of law, but appropriations do.

1999 Ron Paul 40:17
Saying the new appropriations will be used to beef up a neglected defense does not make it so. Defense funds are fungible. The President has proven this by waging a war for a month without any authorization or appropriation. Congress will no more control the next $13 billion than the money the President has already spent on the war.

1999 Ron Paul 40:18
Appropriating funds to fight a war, even without a declaration, provides a much more powerful legal and political endorsement of the war than the public statements made against it by non-binding resolutions passed by the House last week. Declaring war and funding war are two powerful tools of the Congress to restrain a president from waging an unwise and illegal war. If the President pursues an undeclared war and we fund it, we become partners, no matter what justification is given for the spending.

1999 Ron Paul 40:19
Only chaos can come from ignoring the strict prohibition by the Constitution of a president unilaterally waging war. If a president ignores the absence of a declaration, and we are serious, the only option left to Congress is the power of the purse, which is clearly the responsibility of the Congress. We should not fund this illegal and immoral NATO war.

1999 Ron Paul 40:4 the Serb’s more unified probably should be the plural and not the possessive form: the Serbs more unified.

1999 Ron Paul 40:16 Here, the original does not make clear whether it is misadventure or the hyphenated mis-adventure, because the word is hyphenated at the end of a line of text.

1999 Ron Paul 40:18 Here, non-binding is hyphenated at the end of a line of text, and it is unclear whether it should be hyphenated or not.

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