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The War Powers Act : Contending Interpretations And The Challenge Of Realpolitik

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The War Powers Act – Contending Interpretations and the Challenge of Realpolitik Introduction This paper discusses the War Powers Act/Resolution of 1973. Though this resolution was passed by Congress to give it more say in declaration of war and the deployment of American troops to foreign countries promising hostilities, this aim has hardly been achieved. The War Powers Act remains as one of the most contentious legal provisions in the American constitution and has been the subject of several debates and interpretations. More often than not, one finds American soldiers actually engaged in hostilities in foreign lands without the explicit or even implied support of the US Congress. This paper discusses why this is so and hypothesizes that realpolitik has significantly contributed to the practical ineffectiveness of the War Powers Act. Structurally, this paper will first proceed to present a brief history of the War Powers Act and its intended purpose. Afterwards, the linkage between realpolitik and the Act will be discussed. History The hegemonic status of America in the world has been attained with the help of its largely successful indulgence in a number of wars over the years. However, as a country that was founded on democratic principles and ideals, it has sought to even not let its decisions regarding going to war or conducting warfare unaffected by its democratic ideals and institutions. A very good example of such an attempt to allow the ideals of democracy to
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