This is a novel argument:
“We are acting lawfully,” said Harold Koh, the State Department legal adviser, who expanded on the administration’s reasoning in a joint interview with White House Counsel Robert Bauer.
The two senior administration lawyers contended that American forces have not been in “hostilities” at least since April 7, when NATO took over leadership in maintaining a no-flight zone in Libya, and the United States took up what is mainly a supporting role — providing surveillance and refueling for allied warplanes — although unmanned drones operated by the United States periodically fire missiles as well.
They argued that United States forces are at little risk in the operation because there are no American troops on the ground and Libyan forces are unable to exchange meaningful fire with American forces. They said that there was little risk of the military mission escalating, because it is constrained by the United Nations Security Counsel resolution that authorized use of air power to defend civilians.
“We are not saying the president can take the country into war on his own,” Mr. Koh said. “We are not saying the War Powers Resolution is unconstitutional or should be scrapped, or that we can refuse to consult Congress. We are saying the limited nature of this particular mission is not the kind of ‘hostilities’ envisioned by the War Powers Resolution.”
We’re not engaged in hostilities, we’re just launching courtesy bombs! They’re cuddly metal ambassadors of good will with a high explosive tip! Apparently, you are only at war when you have troops at high risk- launching drones into other nations isn’t war, it’s just aggressive foreign policy!
I don’t care if you think what we are doing in Libya is right or wrong, my main beef is it isn’t clear what the hell we are doing, and got dragged into another mess with a bunch of bullshit. And it’s this kind of crap- “We’re not in hostilities, we’re just launching missiles and helping others launch missiles” that makes me hate all lawyers and politicians.
Just admit we and our NATO allies are at war with Libya, and make the god damned case for what we are doing. But spare me this bullshit.