At the Britannica Blog today, I ask, What ever happened to the antiwar movement?
Maybe antiwar organizers assumed that they had elected the man who would stop the war. After all, Barack Obama rose to power on the basis of his early opposition to the Iraq war and his promise to end it. But after two years in the White House he has made both of George Bush’s wars his wars….
And now Libya. In various recent polls more than two-thirds of Americans have opposed military intervention in Libya. No doubt many of them voted for President Obama….
It’s hard to escape the conclusion that antiwar activity in the United States and around the world was driven as much by antipathy to George W. Bush as by actual opposition to war and intervention. Indeed, a University of Michigan study of antiwar protesters found that Democrats tended to withdraw from antiwar activity as Obama found increasing political success and then took office. Independents and members of third parties came to make up a larger share of a smaller movement. Reason.tv looked at the dwindling antiwar movement two months ago.
Like Gene Healy, I also reflect on these words from Senator Barack Obama in his campaign for president:
The President does not have power under the Constitution to unilaterally authorize a military attack in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat to the nation.