the legislature’s power to cut off funds to end the war in
I believe that Congress can and should act decisively
immediately after the inauguration, In the first instance
Mr. Kissinger, or Secretary Rogers, should appear before
appropriate Congressional committees in the first days of
the new session to explain the breakdown of the peace talks.
They were invited to meet with the Foreign Relations Committee
in advance of the new session, on January 2, but both declined.
Should the Administration refuse to allow its spokesmen to
testify, the Congress should proceed on an urgent basis to
consider legislation to regulate the practice of so-called
"executive privilege." Congress and the American people have
not only the right, but the responsibility, to call their
leaders to explain and -- if they can -- justify in public
the extraordinary actions of the last two months. These actions,
couched in secrecy, represent a blatant repudiation of the
explicit assurances of peace which were given to the American
people before the election.
But beyond the regulation of "executive privilege," and
most urgent and important of all, Congress can and should
proceed, through its appropriations power, to bring the war
to an immediate end. Should it fail to do so, we may have
to wait for the election of 1976 before the war can be ended.
By that time, Mr. Nixon's Indiscriminate terror bombing could
well have destroyed North Vietnam as an organized society,
while also inflicting incalculable injury upon our own society
Mr. Nixon has shown himself to be psychologically
incapacitated for the task of restoring peace. He came to the brink
of peace before the election but then, in the wake of the
election, repudiated Mr. Kissinger's agreement. That agreement
would have given the Thieu regime the reasonable chance for
survival on which Mr. Nixon has insisted; it would have left
Mr. Thieu with armed forces many times larger and far better
equipped than the forces of his adversaries, But a "reasonable
chance" is apparently not enough for President Thieu -- or for
President Nixon. They insist upon a guarantee of the Saigon
Regime’s predominance in South Vietnam -- a predominance they
have not been able to establish even with the help of an army
of half a million Americans, or with the pulverizing power of
Mr. Nixon's fleets of bombers.
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