Pat Buchanan

Last year also, a Kurdish woman killed several Iranian officers and soldiers in a suicide bombing. According to Daragahi, "Iraqi Kurds say perceived U.S. support for PEJAK and other anti-Iranian groups prompted Iranians to reactivate Ansar al Islam, a Sunni Muslim group with ties to al-Qaida that has been launching attacks against Kurdish officials."

The danger here is that these proxy wars could explode into U.S. air attacks on the Quds Force, followed by Iranian retaliation against U.S. troops, followed by U.S. strikes on Iran's nuclear facilities and a third U.S. war in the Middle East, dropped into the lap of an overstretched U.S. military and onto the desk of the next president.

In his speech last week, Bush warned that the regime in Tehran "has a choice to make," and if "Iran makes the wrong choice, America will act to protect our interests, and our troops and our Iraqi partners" -- i.e., this is Tehran's last warning.

Query: Where is the Congress of the United States? It alone has the power to authorize or declare a war of the magnitude toward which we may be headed because of proxy wars about which the American people know next to nothing.

Up on Capitol Hill, GOP Rep. Walter Jones of North Carolina is seeking to rewrite the War Powers Act to ensure that -- if the United States goes to war again -- it be the "collective judgment" of both elected branches, as the Founding Fathers intended.

Needed now are congressional hearings to determine if President Bush has authorized a proxy war against Iran -- by funding or arming guerrillas to attack the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, and if that is what is behind the IRG-backed attacks on U.S. forces.

Even before such hearings, both Houses should pass a joint resolution declaring that no appropriated funds may be used for any pre-emptive U.S. air strikes on Iran -- unless and until Congress has authorized such acts of war. If we are headed for war with Iran, it should be the collective judgment of all the nation's elected leadership, and not done on the whim of a lame-duck president unsure about his place in history.

Pat Buchanan

Pat Buchanan is a founding editor of The American Conservative magazine, and the author of many books including State of Emergency: The Third World Invasion and Conquest of America .
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