In many ways President Obama has not directly confronted the National Security STATE finding like all Presidents that he has quite a bit of freedom to operate internationally that he does not have domestically. There is a lot of US history behind the rise of the National Security State that I now largely believe is just a front for corporate socialists that prefer government contracting for defense with little real oversight and gross margins that amount to constructive fraud on the US. Congress also is complicit in this rise and corruption.
In an effort to check the so-called Imperial Presidency of Richard M. Nixon the Congress in its wisdom passed the War Powers Statute and I believe it was enacted over a Presidential veto. Whatever!
The CRS has continuously updated their product on this statutory enactment with the most recent being found at URL:
This version was released on February 11, 2011. NO, repeat NO, Congressional resolution was enacted authorizing the Libyan strikes by the US and the cover legality if I understand correctly is Section 7 of the UN charter and also an enacted resolution. But neither if I am correct allow the Presiden, even as Commander-I-Chief to authorize the Libyan strikes without Congressional approval. I understand this issue is now under active evaluation of staff for MEMBERS of Congresss! Hearings may well result. It is my belief that despite public expressions of opposition by GATES and the Uniformed Military the Navy and Air Force are glad to be able to show off their capability in the desert of Libya. Hope they are not must pounding sand.