PDD 25 - a coup d' etat in American government by Daniel New
In 1994, President William Clinton authorized himself to place
American soldiers under United Nations control by a completely new set of
rules. Because he knew that this radical and unconstitutional
policy would bring about demands for his impeachment, he then classified
the document, so that not even your Senator or Representative in Congress
can read it! Indeed, Madeleine Albright argued before a
Congressional hearing that it was an "Executive Branch
document" and, "...in order to preserve the Constitutional
balance of powers between the branches of government," it would not
be made available to them. And they accepted that
The difficulty in situations like this is in knowing where to start with
The government did release a "public version" (available at
http://mikenew.com/pdd25.html), which is a fluff piece.
Alleging to be a condensation, it is actually several pages longer than
the original. Here is the government's own summary of Presidential
Decision Directive #25.
When Army Specialist Michael New requested to see the legal basis for the
order for him to wear a United Nations uniform, his officers informed him
that it was based upon PDD 25. When he asked to see it, they
informed him, "No, you cannot see it. It is classified.
You will just have to trust us." Michael New laughed out loud,
and said, "What is this? The Soviet Union? You can't
just make up secret laws, then put people in jail for not obeying
them!" Ah, but they
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: The Clinton Administration's Policy on
Multilateral Peace Operations
Last year, President Clinton ordered an inter-agency review of our
nation's peacekeeping policies and programs in order to develop a
comprehensive policy framework suited to the realities of the post-Cold
War period. This policy review has resulted in a Presidential Decision
Directive (PDD). The President signed this directive, following the
completion of extensive consultations with Members of Congress. This
paper summarizes the key elements of that directive.
As specified in the "Bottom-Up Review," the primary
mission of the U.S. Armed Forces remains to be prepared to fight and win
nearly two simultaneous regional conflicts. In this context, peacekeeping
can be one useful tool to help prevent and resolve such conflicts before
they pose direct threats to our national security. Peacekeeping can also
serve U.S. interests by promoting democracy, regional security, and
The policy directive (PDD) addresses six major issues of reform
1. Making disciplined and coherent choices about which peace
operations to support -- both when we vote in the Security Council for UN
peace operations and when we participate in such operations with U.S.
-- To achieve this goal, the policy directive sets forth three
increasingly rigorous standards of review for U.S. support for or
participation in peace operations, with the most stringent applying to
U.S. participation in missions that may involve combat. The policy
directive affirms that peacekeeping can be a useful tool for advancing
U.S. national security interests in some circumstances, but both U.S. and
UN involvement in peacekeeping must be selective and more effective.
2. Reducing U.S. costs for UN peace operations, both the
percentage our nation pays for each operation and the cost of the
-- To achieve this goal, the policy directive orders that we work
to reduce our peacekeeping assessment percentage from the current 31.7%
to 25% by January 1, 1996, and proposes a number of specific steps to
reduce the cost of UN peace operations.
3. Defining clearly our policy regarding the command and control
of American military forces in UN peace operations.
-- The policy directive underscores the fact that the President
will never relinquish command of U.S. forces. However, as Commander-in-
Chief, the President has the authority to place U.S. forces under the
operational control of a foreign commander when doing so serves American
security interests, just as American leaders have done numerous times
since the Revolutionary War, including in Operation Desert Storm.
-- The greater the anticipated U.S. military role, the less likely
it will be that the U.S. will agree to have a UN commander exercise
overall operational control over U.S. forces. Any large scale
participation of U.S. forces in a major peace enforcement operation that
is likely to involve combat should ordinarily be conducted under U.S.
command and operational control or through competent regional
organizations such as NATO or ad hoc coalitions.
4. Reforming and improving the UN's capability to manage peace
-- The policy recommends 11 steps to strengthen UN management of
peace operations and directs U.S. support for strengthening the UN's
planning, logistics, information and command and control
5. Improving the way the U.S. government manages and funds peace
-- The policy directive creates a new "shared
responsibility" approach to managing and funding UN peace operations
within the U.S. Government. Under this approach, the Department of
Defense will take lead management and funding responsibility for those UN
operations that involve U.S. combat units and those that are likely to
involve combat, whether or not U.S. troops are involved. This approach
will ensure that military expertise is brought to bear on those
operations that have a significant military component.
-- The State Department will retain lead management and funding
responsibility for traditional peacekeeping operations that do not
involve U.S. combat units. In all cases, the State Department remains
responsible for the conduct of diplomacy and instructions to embassies
and our UN Mission in New York.
6. Creating better forms of cooperation between the Executive, the
Congress and the American public on peace operations.
-- The policy directive sets out seven proposals for increasing
and regularizing the flow of information and consultation between the
executive branch and Congress; the President believes U.S. support for
and participation in UN peace operations can only succeed over the long
term with the bipartisan support of Congress and the American people.
When the president of the United States takes it upon himself to
authorize himself to do anything, outside the authority of the
Constitution (the document he took an oath to support and defend), it can
only be regarded as an act of rebellion to the rule of Law, an act of
Tyranny, and an act of dictatorship.
Then Chairman of the Armed Forces Committee of the House, Bob Dornan, was
shocked when I told him about PDD 25, in 1996. We were sitting in a
restaurant at Tyson's Corner, near Alexandria, Virginia. He almost
choked. The he said, "By God, I can get that
document!" Then he turned to his aide and said, "You get
that document on my desk, by tomorrow, if at all possible."
His aide made a note. And not another sputter came from Bob Dornan
or his office on the subject. Upon inquiry, all we could learn was
that, "The document is not available."
The White House may make all the noise it likes about the difference in
"operational control" and "command control", but when
all is said and done, it is an act of sophistry. The terms are not
recognized by the Constitution, and a sad day it is that we have to
remind the president that we are a nation under that Constitution, not
merely under the whims of a political hack. When our government
leaders decide that the Constitution is out of date, (as did Speaker
Dennis Hastert, when he gavelled down Rep. Ron Paul on the question of a
declaration of war in Iraq), then we have government that has run amok,
and will always find ourselves in untenable foreign policy situations
that may please the crowds back home, for a while, but are outside the
legal bounds of what we can do. Contrary to the popular mindset
today, it is not true that "rules were made to be
If the Guardians of the Gate do not do their duty, what happens?
Two things are predictable. First, those in authority will begin to
assume more and more power to themselves, ignoring those who object,
because they have leaders above them who are doing the same thing.
This results in tyranny. The other is that the People acquire a
disrespect for law and order, because those who are supposed to enforce
it are actually running roughshod over it. Historically, this
creates a breakdown in law and order, and tends to lead toward the most
unpleasant and dangerous mentality of revolution.
For these reasons, it is imperative that we expose the abuse of power
that occurs, no matter how high the office where it is found, and
reprimand or discipline those who commit such acts.
The first step in this process is for Congress to demand to see the
original document, Presidential Decision Directive #25, and all other
classified Executive Orders, and if necessary, for either Congress or the
courts to revoke them. If a court needs to decide if national
security might be threatened, that would be understandable, but if the
court decides to provide legal cover to support a political agenda, then
it is all over for this nation as a Republic. We may well survive
for centuries as an Empire, but it won't be the same. What am I
saying?! It's already not the same!!
When President Bill Clinton invoked PDD 25 with the stroke of a
pen, he pulled off a coup d'etat and Congress snored.
President George W. Bush, who could revoke PDD 25 with the stroke
of a pen, has ignored the subject, and leaves PDD 25 in place for future
presidents to use as precedent for further eroding the foundations of our
The same can be said for a People who continue to elect senators and
representatives who care nothing about the Constitution that they take an
oath to support and defend, and who know so little about it that they
could not protect it if they wanted to. They have no clue what it
says, much less what it means.