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Ken Buck on War & Peace

 

 


No deadline for withdrawal from Afghanistan

Q: If President Obama and General Petraeus were to determine that they need a significant number of troops to stay in Afghanistan beyond the July 2011 deadline, is that a position that you'd be able to support?

BUCK: Well, I don't think we set artificial deadlines. I think that we set realistic goals, and, and try to accomplish those goals. I don't think we should be nation-building, I don't think we should be staying there over the long-term

Q: What if General Petraeus says, "You know what, it's July 2011, but if we're going to achieve our goals, we can't pull any troops out. May need more troops, may need to surge up again here." Well, you could support that because you don't believe in deadlines?

BUCK: No, I didn't say I could support that. I don't believe in deadlines, I don't believe in telling the enemy when we're going to withdraw. I need to know what he thinks the goals are. And if I agree with those goals, then evaluate at that point.

Source: NBC's Meet the Press: 2010 Colorado Senate debate , Oct 17, 2010

Don't allow Iran to obtain nukes, even via military

As for Iran, Buck said it should not be allowed to obtain nuclear weapons. "And we should take appropriate action if necessary," he added, a reference to a possible military strike.

Buck challenged Bennet, saying he'd voted against imposing sanctions on companies doing business with Iran, a claim Bennet denied, but Buck insisted was accurate.

Source: Pueblo Chieftan coverage of 2010 Colorado Senate Debate , Oct 8, 2010

Afghanistan war ok; nation-building not ok

While endorsing the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan, Buck said it was a mistake to attempt to build a democratic nation there. He said U.S. policy should be limited to three goals--to prevent the country from becoming a haven for terrorists; to disrupt the illegal drugs coming out of Afghanistan; and to promote peace in the area by leaving a minimal force behind.

Bennet's view was even briefer, saying U.S. goals in Afghanistan should be to destroy al-Qaida groups on the Pakistan border and then to support the Pakistan military to make certain that country's nuclear weapons are secure from terrorists. Then U.S. troops should be brought home.

Source: Pueblo Chieftan coverage of 2010 Colorado Senate Debate , Oct 8, 2010

Get out of the nation-building business in Afghanistan

Q: Is the current strategy the right strategy in Afghanistan?

A: I think it is the right strategy for a short period of time. I think overall we have to get out of the nation-building business. In my view, we have three goals in Afghanistan. The first is to make sure that Afghanistan is not a safe haven for terrorists. The second thing to do is to make sure that we are disrupting, dismantling the drug trade as much as possible. And the third thing we need to do is promote regional stability in Central Asia. The idea that we are going to create a Western-style democracy in Afghanistan is pure folly. We're not going to get that done in 10 years, in 50 years. And we're going to lose thousands of lives and we're going spend billions of dollars.

Source: The Denver Post, "A conversation with Ken Buck" , Jul 18, 2010

Opposes timetable for troop withdrawal from Afghanistan.

Buck opposes the F2A survey question on troop withdrawal

Faith2Action.org is "the nation's largest network of pro-family groups." They provide election resources for each state, including Voter Guides and Congressional Scorecards excerpted here. The Faith2Action survey summarizes candidate stances on the following topic: 'Set a timetable for withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan '

Source: Faith2Action Survey 10-FF-q17 on Sep 19, 2010

Sponsored bill to remove US forces from Yemen.

Buck voted YEA Remove US Forces from Hostilities Against Yemen

Congressional Summary: H.J.Res.37 directs the President to remove U.S. Armed Forces from hostilities in or affecting Yemen within 30 days unless Congress authorizes a later withdrawal date, issues a declaration of war, or specifically authorizes the use of the Armed Forces. Prohibited activities include providing in-flight fueling for non-U.S. aircraft conducting missions as part of the conflict in Yemen.

Statement in opposition by Rep. Phil Roe (R-TN-1): This legislation would hamper the ability of our military commanders to limit terrorist activity in Yemen, and would create a vacuum for Iran to fill. I believe that the withdrawal of our forces from the region should be done in a way that ensures long term security and stability

Statement in support by Rep. Adam David Smith (D-WA-9): The civil war in Yemen has led to the world's worst humanitarian crisis with over half of the population facing severe food insecurity and 24 million Yemenis in need of humanitarian assistance. Passage of this resolution in the House sends a clear message to this Administration that Congress does not support de facto support for the Saudi-led coalition in this conflict. The US should be focused on working towards a peaceful resolution to this conflict and taking measures to alleviate the devastating humanitarian situation."

Statement in opposition by Rep. George Holding (R-NC-02): As part of their expansive campaign to destabilize the region, Iran is providing extensive support and aid to the Houthi rebel forces responsible for precipitating this conflict in the first place. Thankfully, Saudi Arabia has stepped up and taken a key leadership role in combating the Iranian-backed rebels. We should be supporting their efforts.

Legislative outcome: House Bill Passed 248-177-6 on rollcall #577. No action in Senate [died in Committee].

Source: Congressional vote 19-HJR37 on Jan 30, 2019

President ok to use military force against Iran.

Buck voted NAY the Iran War Powers Resolution

Axios.com summary: The House passed a symbolic war powers resolution directing President Trump to halt the use of military force against Iran unless he obtains approval from Congress.

The big picture: A classified briefing on the killing of Iranian general Qasem Soleimani [by the US military] left Democrats and even some Republicans deeply skeptical, with many claiming that officials did not provide evidence that there was an "imminent" threat from Iran. Sens. Mike Lee (R-UT) and Rand Paul (R-KY) said they will vote in favor of a similar resolution in the Senate [S J Res 68].

What opponents are saying: Former national security adviser and notorious Iran hawk John Bolton tweeted: "The 1973 War Powers Resolution is unconstitutional. It reflects a fundamental misunderstanding of how the Constitution allocated foreign affairs authority between the President and Congress. The Resolution should be repealed." Pres. Trump quote tweeted Bolton and added: "Smart analysis, I fully agree!"

What supporters are saying: Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) was one of the few Republicans to vote in favor of the resolution, stating on the House floor: "Killing Soleimani was the right decision, but engaging in another forever war in the Middle East would be the wrong decision." Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) introduced legislation that would block funding for offensive military force against Iran without congressional authorization. Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA) is also seeking to repeal the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF), which has been used repeatedly to justify war in the Middle East in the wake of 9/11. Lee was the only member of Congress to vote against the AUMF in 2001, criticizing it as a "blank check."

Legislative outcome: H Con Res 83 Passed House 224-194-13 on 1/9/20; S J Res 68 passed Senate 55-45-0 on 2/13/20. Vetoed 5/6; Senate veto override failed 5/7/20.

Source: Congressional vote 20-SCR33 on Jan 9, 2020

Other candidates on War & Peace: Ken Buck on other issues:
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