“My conscience bothered me. When I was commissioned by the President in May 2010, I took an oath to ‘preserve, protect, and defend’ the Constitution of the United States. The Constitution gives Congress the power to declare war…. 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?”
These are the words of Army Captain Nathan Michael Smith (shown in inset), who has filed suit in the U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C., against President Barack Obama. Captain Smith is challenging the president’s decision to deploy additional special operations forces to the Middle East, to combat ISIS.
The legal challenge was filed one day after a Navy SEAL was killed in combat in Iraq, the third since a coalition, led by the United States, began its military campaign against the “Islamic State” in 2014.
Smith actually supports military action against ISIS, calling them “an army of butchers.” But he believes it is unconstitutional for a president to go to war without authorization from Congress. And Smith contends that it is a violation of his own oath to the Constitution to fight such a war, without that authorization.
Read More: Army Captain Sues Obama Over War Powers