Army Captain Sues Obama Over ISIS Strategy


An Army captain filed a lawsuit against President Barack Obama on May 4, saying the president has been engaging in an "illegal war" with ISIS, also known as the Islamic State.

Plaintiff Nathan Michael Smith, a 28-year-old captain and intelligence officer stationed in Kuwait, said in the suit that he supports the fight against ISIS but believes Obama’s current strategy lacks authorization from Congress.

"To honor my oath, I am asking the court to tell the president that he must get proper authority from Congress, under the War Powers Resolution, to wage the war against ISIS in Iraq and Syria," the suit reads, according to the New York Times.

According to Smith, the Obama administration failed to get congressional authorization under the War Powers Resolution of 1973 for the U.S.'s campaign against the terrorist organization.

"In waging war against ISIS, President Obama is misusing limited congressional authorizations for the use of military force as a blank check to conduct a war against enemies of his own choosing, without geographical or temporal boundaries," the lawsuit reads, the Washington Post reported.

"Congress passed the 1973 War Powers Resolution in response to just such presidential overreach in the Vietnam War, and to protect against such abuses of presidential power in the future," the suit continues.

Smith added that his "conscious" led him to file the suit.

"How could I honor my oath when I am fighting a war, even a good war, that the Constitution does not allow, or Congress has not approved?" the lawsuit states.

Yale Law School professor Bruce Ackerman, a consultant in the suit, said it came as a result of conversations he had with Smith. 

" ... Captain Smith ... was troubled by what was going on, and then we started talking,” Ackerman told the Washington Post. 

The suit came just a month after Obama announced plans to expand the U.S. military presence in Syria as a way to apply pressure to ISIS. 

Sources: Washington Post, New York Times / Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons

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