WASHINGTON, U.S (Caasimada Online) – Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) has put forth a war powers resolution aimed at ending the United States military involvement in Somalia, with the sole exception of personnel safeguarding the U.S. Embassy.
This comes on the heels of Gaetz’s unsuccessful effort to recall American troops from Syria, which encountered resistance from both parties and was ultimately defeated in a 321-103 vote.
Evaluating military presence in foreign territories
In an official statement, Gaetz called into question the American public’s trust in military leaders and their rationale for occupying Somalia.
He demanded transparency, asking, “How do they expect Americans to believe their justification of occupying Somalia when they can’t even determine who in their own training programs will lead a violent coup afterward?”
Gaetz urged the Congressional War Machine to clarify the benefits of maintaining a military presence in Somalia for the American people.
If no adequate explanation is provided, Gaetz insisted, it is the responsibility of Congress to repatriate the troops stationed in Somalia.
The war powers resolution and potential outcomes
Under the proposed resolution, the House of Representatives would be required to vote on the matter within 18 days of its introduction.
Should it pass, U.S. armed forces would be mandated to leave Somalia by 365 days after the resolution’s adoption.
Gaetz expects opponents to cite the 2001 Authorization for using Military Force (AUMF) against Afghanistan as grounds for the continued deployment of troops in Somalia.
In a previous vote, House Republicans and Democrats united to block Gaetz’s resolution regarding the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Syria.
Critics claimed that the small force in Syria lacked proper congressional authorization, relying instead on the outdated 2001 AUMF enacted more than two decades ago.
‘Modernized authority and reduced global intervention’
Gaetz and other congressional members argue that an updated authority is necessary for deploying troops overseas and that the United States should cease its role as a “global police force.”
Gaetz expressed skepticism about the efficacy of the 900 American soldiers currently stationed in Syria.
“I do not believe that what stands between a caliphate and not a caliphate are the 900 Americans who have been sent to this hellscape with no definition of victory, with no clear objective and purely existing as a vestige to the regime change failed foreign policies of multiple former presidents,” he said.
As a House Armed Services Committee member, Gaetz submitted the resolution concerning Syria in late February following a U.S. Central Command report detailing a U.S. and Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) helicopter raid in northeastern Syria.
The operation left four U.S. service members injured and resulted in the elimination of a high-ranking ISIS leader.