To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water;
That is one clause of the Constitutional powers granted the federal government.
Obviously war is unnecessary. Reprisal is off the table as well unless one or more of the kidnapped were Americans. Finally, we have the part of the clause about Congress making rules concerning captures on land and water. That means the Congress can set some ground rules on how to capture these people if it were to get involved. Obviously, sending in a SEAL team into a foreign nation might piss off a foreign nation so the US should secure permission to conduct such an affair with that nation. A treaty could be made for such a purpose, just as we have extradition treaties for the return of fugitives.
H.R. 3076 was written by RP to authorize the capture, dead or alive, of Osama Bin Laden. His reference for the authority to do so was the same clause above. This particular instance wouldn't be about reprisal but just about capture. Whether it is just for the nation to do so, is the heart of the question. If we can do so while maintaining the respect and with treaty signed by the host nation where the capture will take place, I think it would be just in that regards. Is it our fight, though?
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