T.he Honorable Charles E. Schumer
U.S. Senator, State of New York
The Senate of the United States
January 8, 2008
We have met on numerous occasions, and I have followed your career
since you joined Congress as a U.S. representative. We are both from
the same hometown, Brooklyn, N.Y. I grew up in Park Slope, the
neighborhood where you now reside.
You have often made yourself accessible to the public, and it is this
quality, along with the position you occupy as a representative of the
people of New York State in the U.S. Sentate, that has prompted me to
submit the following inquiry and request.
It is said that our nation is at war, but no declaration of war has
been made. It is Congress that has the power and responsibility to
declare war (U.S. Constitution, Article I, Section 8). The United
States have initiated and persisted in engaging in acts of war in Iraq,
Afghanistan, Pakistan, the Balkans and other countries since the 1990s
without a declaration of war. I am wondering if your office is
dedicated to upholding the U.S. Constitution, as you pledged to do in
your oath of office, which you have taken many times now as a U.S.
representative and a U.S. senator. Congress cannot cede the war-making
power to the executive without a constitutional amendment. I deserve an
explanation as to why the United States is involved in acts of war in
sovereign nations without a formal declaration of war by the U.S.
You are my senator. I respectfully request a full explanation. If it is
found that the current sitting congress and past congresses have
violated the constitution by ceding to the executive, powers that the
executive is not entitled to under the constitution, such as using the
U.S. armed forces and/or various surrogates to engage in acts of war
absent a formal declaration of war by the U.S. Congress, an
investigation of this matter should be initiated by your office.
I ask your immediate attention on this matter, as the invasions of two
countries by U.S. troops may constitute illegal acts of war. The United
States may be involved in war crimes and crimes against humanity as
defined in U.S. domestic law and international treaties of which they
are a signatory. I therefore ask that you clarify our status as to
1. the constitutionality of acts of war the United States have been, or
are currently, engaged in, since the invasion of Afghanistan in 2001,
including the invasion and occupation of Iraq beginning in 2003;
2. the current status of the United States with respect to war crimes
and crimes against humanity that the U.S. armed forces and/or
surrogates under its direction, and/or U.S. intelligence agencies, may
have committed since the invasion of Afghanistan in 2001.
I respectfully request that this information be sent promptly, as I
wish to disseminate it to the public in my capacity as a journalist.
Thank you in advance for your assistance in this important matter.
cc: U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, U.S. Representative Scott Murphy
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