1. Press Release
  2. U.S. Wars & Militarism

FCNL Welcomes Bill to Repeal Post-9/11 Military Legislation

By Timothy McHugh, March 13, 2019

Washington, DC – A coalition of 42 organization from across the ideological spectrum called on House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Eliot Engel (NY-16) and Ranking Member Michael McCaul (TX-10) to take up Rep. Barbara Lee’s (CA-13) bill to repeal the 2001 Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF).

Contact: Tim McHugh, Friends Committee on National Legislation, media@fcnl.org; 202-903-2515

The Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL) supports the Lee bill, introduced late last month. Passed just three days after the 9/11 attacks, the 2001 AUMF set the stage for the invasion of Afghanistan and the War on Terror which continues today.

“A 17-year-old, nearly limitless authorization for war is not a responsible nor a sustainable foundation for our national security or national security policy,” said FCNL Executive Secretary Diane Randall. “Repealing the 2001 AUMF would serve as a significant step forward toward reining in never-ending war and militarism abroad.”

As the coalition’s letter makes clear, since 2001, the AUMF has been used to justify military interventions, indefinite detention, and lethal drone attacks worldwide. It has no geographic restrictions, no time limit, and no constraints on which kinds of force may be used. Most problematic of all, it fails to clearly name the groups with whom the U.S is at war. Three administrations have cited the 2001 AUMF as the legal basis for rampant military operations abroad without congressional approval.

“While it is the president’s duty to conduct war, Congress is responsible for determining when and where to go to war. And they must conduct proper oversight of all wars,” said Heather Brandon-Smith, FCNL’s legislative director for militarism and human rights. “The outdated AUMF has resulted in Congress abdicating its constitutional war authority and becoming complicit in endless, ever-expanding global warfare.”

Global warfare has cost over $5.6 trillion and more than 250,000 civilian deaths.

The United States has conducted counterterrorism operations in 80 countries since 2001—including combat in 14. During that same period of time, 15,000 American service members and contractors have been killed. Representative Lee’s bill would end the 2001 AUMF after eight months and would help bring to an end more than 17 years of never-ending war.

To learn more, please visit www.fcnl.org.


Timothy McHugh

  • Director of Media Relations

Tim leads organizational efforts to communicate about issues, victories, priorities, and updates through all available news channels – specifically the major media outlets. He is responsible for providing FCNL staff with opportunities to convey our message – in print and through the airways – to the public and throughout the country. He keeps FCNL issues and staff on the collective radars of reporters and journalists nationwide. Lastly, he runs FCNL several media-focused social media channels.