Anti-War Committee Statement Against the US/Saudi War on Yemen
Fight Back News Service is circulating the following statement from the Twin Cites based Anti-War Committee.
The Anti-War Committee calls on its supporters to demand Congress and the Trump administration immediately cease all support for Saudi Arabia’s military assault on Yemen.
In March 2015, Saudi Arabia, with the support of President Obama, began waging a ruthless war against Yemen, with the goal of protecting Saudi and U.S. shipping, oil, and imperialist interests in the Middle East. The invasion began in reaction to the September 21 Revolution of 2014, when the Houthi movement for Yemeni self-determination, which for years had protested growing Saudi influence over Yemeni society, led a takeover of the most populous areas of Yemen including government institutions in the capital Sanaa. The war has been waged by a so-called “coalition” of Saudi-aligned governments in the region, together with the United States, and has involved a brutal aerial bombing campaign, a ground invasion and a blockade of Yemeni seaports.
While the ground assault has failed to capture significant territory from the Houthi-aligned forces, the aerial assaults—which have persisted for nearly four years—have destroyed much of the country’s infrastructure along with countless lives.
War on Yemen has Created a Grave Human Rights Crisis
International monitors have documented Saudi bombings of Yemeni refugee camps, hospitals, funeral processions, school buses, and many other civilian targets. Casualties from individual bombings have climbed into the hundreds; tens of thousands of Yemenis are estimated to have been killed overall.
The U.S./Saudi coalition has also blockaded seaports of the Houthi-held areas of Yemen, preventing food and medical supplies from reaching millions of people. As a result, famine has spread across Yemen, with international aid organizations estimating that hundreds of children die of malnutrition daily, and that 14 million Yemenis—half of the pre-war population—are at risk of starvation.
Adding to the carnage, the U.S./Saudi war and blockade have caused what international medical groups have deemed the worst cholera outbreak in human history, with over one million cases and thousands of deaths.
End U.S. Military Intervention!
None of this could have taken place without the initiative, weapons, intelligence, and approval of the United States. The U.S. supplies targeting information and intelligence for Saudi attacks, refuels Saudi planes in the air, has deployed Navy destroyers in the blockade, and supplies arms and training to Saudi forces. There are even U.S. “boots on the ground” near the Yemeni border. As of early 2018, about a dozen Green Beret commandos were stationed in Saudi Arabia along the Yemen border.
Historically the Saudi regime has proven itself a willing partner of NATO powers, chiefly of the United States. The war on Yemen is no exception, as it willingly aids the US in its bid to cement its domination of the oil-rich Middle East and the strategic Gulf of Aden shipping lanes, where Yemen’s southwest coastline forms a narrow choke point connecting Europe to Asia’s ports. Both the US and Saudi Arabia have also been eager to portray the war on Yemen as part of their long-standing beleaguerment of the Islamic Republic of Iran, which neoconservative warmongers and regime-changers for decades have sought to punish for its rejection of Washington’s diktats.
In 2017, Trump and Saudi rulers crafted a US arms sales deal totaling $350 billion, all to fuel the profits of CEOs and shareholders of big corporations like Raytheon, Lockheed Martin and Boeing. These arms sales continue the direct complicity of the United States government in Saudi war crimes against Yemen.
Khashoggi’s Case Sheds Light on Horrors of War in Yemen
Meanwhile, the outcry from U.S. media and political leaders about the brutal murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi has been naive at best, and hypocritical and deceitful at worst. While his murder has led to some increased scrutiny of the war on Yemen, the shock being expressed belies the U.S. government’s years-long collusion in exactly the sort of violence and human rights abuses Khashoggi was silenced for writing about. Unsurprisingly, on November 14, House Republicans moved to block a vote to end US military involvement in Yemen under the War Powers Act. While a separate bill in the Senate would end arms sales for Saudi use in Yemen, the bill simultaneously threatens to levy even more sanctions on Iran—sanctions that are already choking off medical and humanitarian supplies—over its alleged support for the Houthi movement. We demand an end to US wars and blockades, with no exceptions!
No Ban, No Bombs, No War!
While continuing the war on Yemen, President Trump has outlawed Yemenis from traveling to the U.S. under his racist Muslim ban. It is criminal for the U.S. to bomb and attack other countries and then turn away refugees when the U.S. has destroyed their homelands! It is outrageous for Trump to ban Yemenis from traveling to the U.S. while destroying their country and starving their people. Trump, since the campaign trail, has painted the Middle East and Muslims in general as “terrorists” and this anti-Muslim rhetoric and this racist travel ban are legitimizing the increase in hate crimes and hate speech against our Muslim neighbors. We cannot be silent in the face of this bigotry! We need to speak out against the racist Muslim ban and the foreign policies which cause refugees to flee.
We at the Anti-War Committee know that the Congress will only end US support for Saudi Arabia if we demand with a united voice: STOP SUPPORTING THE WAR ON YEMEN!
Call Senator Amy Klobuchar at 202-224-3244 and Senator Tina Smith at 202- 224-5641 to tell them to vote against all aid to Saudi Arabia and to voice opposition to US coordination in the war on Yemen.