Michigan congressman worries about future U.S. military action in Iraq

Aug 15, 2014

Michigan Congressman Fred Upton, R-St. Joseph, says President Obama should be more open about his plans for U.S. military involvement in Iraq.

“I think that before we would ever commit troops again (in Iraq) the president would have to present a case that we would have to sign off on,” says Rep. Fred Upton (MI-R)
“I think that before we would ever commit troops again (in Iraq) the president would have to present a case that we would have to sign off on,” says Rep. Fred Upton (MI-R)
Credit Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

The U.S. has been dropping bombs on Islamic militants in northern Iraq for a week.

The group, commonly known as ISIS, has been expanding its hold on the region and destabilizing the Iraqi government and forcing Christians to flee.

Congressman Fred Upton is concerned President Obama may expand the U.S. role in Iraq without congressional approval.

“I think that before we would ever commit troops again the president would have to present a case that we would have to sign off on,” says Upton.

Upton wants President Obama to comply with the provisions of the War Powers Act.

The Republican congressman does not want to see the U.S. “put boots on the ground” to deal with ISIS.

“We are in a far worse position today than we were in two, three years ago,” says Upton.

Upton expects the situation in Iraq will be a major agenda item when Congress returns to work next month.

Meanwhile, Iraq's new prime minister-designate says he is committed to fighting corruption and uniting the Iraqi people in the face of terrorism.

In a statement released by his media office Friday, Haider al-Abadi says his Cabinet will be based on "efficiency and integrity, to salvage the country from security, political and economic problems."

Incumbent Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki announced late Thursday that he will not seek a third term in office, moving to defuse a political crisis that had plunged the country into uncertainty as it fights a Sunni insurgency.

France's decision to arm Kurdish fighters in the battle against Islamic militants has marked a turning point in Europe's wavering stance on Iraq, with an EU emergency meeting on Friday seeking to forge a unified response to the Sunni insurgents' advance.

The 2003 U.S.-led Iraq invasion created a bitter rift across the European Union and the bloc has since been loath to get involved in the country, but the militants in Iraq and Syria who threaten to reshape the Middle East have raised the stakes by drawing more than 1,500 European radicals to their ranks.

The plight of refugees and the threat of Islamic State militants overrunning more of Iraq prompted the 28-nation bloc to cut short a holiday weekend and convene an emergency meeting of its foreign ministers.