Will Congress Resist Obama's Warmaking Plans?

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Obama's plan will raise the number of U.S. troops in Afghanistan to about 100,000. Will that hasten the end of the war? Is the Karzai government, widely seen as corrupt, worth fighting for? Is victory possible? And what defines victory?

There are many questions; fewer answers.

More important, many Democrats are demanding a say in the process. Only five times in the nation's history, and not since World War II, has Congress used its power to declare war.

In the past half-century, U.S. troops have been fighting, and dying, in faraway places like Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan — all without a declaration of war by Congress. And as familiar as it is to hear a president sending Americans overseas to fight, it is equally familiar to hear lawmakers demanding a say in the process. And that goes back as far as Vietnam.


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