I wish I could make this channel about Yemen all the time. But I can’t. It would just get too depressing. It’s important to hit this topic as often as I can though. This doesn’t just come from my opposition to Saudi Arabia’s government, and the way they destabilize the region. Yemen is truly in the midst of a catastrophe. One of my regrets from the early stages of my Yemen series is the way that I use the UN’s blanket “12,000 people killed” language. The UN stopped counting the dead in Yemen years ago. A recent report puts the figures at over 55,000 dead.
And those are just the figures for the people who were killed directly by fighting. Large scale starvation is now reckoned to have killed 85,000 children in Yemen as well. The bodycount is mounting and the violence is getting worse. For nothing. For less than nothing. The Iran excuse the Trump administration keeps reaching for is a fantasy. It’s important for folks to know about this, because it’s not a difficult problem. The US could stop the war almost immediately, and it would lose nothing by doing so. Information is the key to the end of the tragedy in Yemen. That’s why I’ll keep making vids like today’s video, and why I’m quite proud of my series on the topic.
Video Transcript after the jump…
Hey there. Today I would like to issue a very concrete warning. Do not trust the Trump administration on Yemen. Last week something very exciting happened. The US Senate finally took a shred of self respect back, and moved a resolution against the war on Yemen to the next step. I have talked a lot about how weak the war in Yemen makes the Congress look, and it’s great to see them start to stand up. But this is taking too long. The US Saudi invasion of Yemen has already cost at least 100000 lives. Trump and the Saudis will try to convince us this problem is being solved. We can’t let them get away with it.
On paper this shouldn’t be a difficult fight. On the keep murdering Yemenis side we have Trump and his Administration, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. That’s it. Nobody else thinks this is a good idea. Oh yeah except for defense contractors. People who sell bombs love this war. On the Stop killing Yemenis side we have the US Senate, and probably next year’s new US House of Representatives as well. As I talked about before we have almost everybody at the State Department other than Secretary of State. Mike Pompeo. We have also got any decent human being on the planet who knows anything about the conflict on Yemen. This should be a slam dunk! Unfortunately its not. Thats because the bad guys are unified, and focused on keeping the killing going. Everybody on the other side is easily distracted, and has other things to worry about. So the killing continues.
The folks who want to keep the war going also have the most information about the killing, because they’re the ones doing it. The US-Saudi coalition has done everything it can to bar journalists from the country. Too much of what we know about this conflict comes through Saudi and US government sources. And they’re doing their best to manipulate what we know about it.
The most visible aspect of US support for this horror show has been the refueling of Saudi planes on their way to bomb school buses. About a month back the US announced that it will no longer participate in this one aspect of the Saudi war effort. This is Great, but if you read the fine print at all it’s clear that the US military finally took this step because Saudi Arabia no longer needs their services. The move is a political ploy, not a real attempt to help the Yemeni people.
Last week’s Senate vote made it clear that public opinion is finally waking up and turning against this horrific war. But this means the fight is just starting. The Trump administration will do everything in its power to keep helping the Saudis. Those rooms in Trumps hotels aren’t going to rent themselves. The US-Saudi coalition is more constrained now, but it’s going to use it’s monopoly on information and violence to get away with everything it can.
Last week we saw a victory in the Senate but a loss at the United Nations. The United Kingdom had proposed a fairly mild and both sidesy resolution for the Security Council. The Saudis really didn’t like the fact that it called for them to stop bombing Yemen’s main source of food and medical supplies. Last week The U.S. squashed the resolution, on the ridiculous pretext that it would somehow make the Saudis less willing to negotiate.
Thirty years ago, when the US Congress stood up to Ronald Reagan’s significantly less horrific war in Nicaragua, they had to intervene multiple times, with multiple pieces of legislation. It’s not going to be any different this time around. We can’t trust the Trump administration to do the right thing on Yemen.
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