Home/Daniel Larison/The Appalling Idea of Increasing U.S. Support for the War on Yemen

The Appalling Idea of Increasing U.S. Support for the War on Yemen

Ibrahem Qasim/Flickr: air strike in Sana'a, May 2015

Dan de Luce reports that the Trump administration is considering increased support for the Saudi-led war on Yemen:

The Pentagon is looking to increase support for Saudi Arabia’s two-year-old war against Houthi rebels in Yemen, signaling a possible expansion of Washington’s controversial backing for a campaign that human rights groups say has killed hundreds of civilians and fueled a growing humanitarian crisis.

Two years ago, the Obama administration backed the Saudi-ledintervention even though our officers didn’t know what the coalition hoped to accomplish and many U.S. officials rightly didn’t think it would succeed. Now that the coalition has spent the last two years wrecking and starving Yemen without achieving any of their stated goals, it is even more absurd and irresponsible for the U.S. to continue support for the war, much less increase it. If the original decision to back the Saudis and their allies was shameful, giving them even more support now would be simply appalling. It was bad enough to make the terrible mistake of making the U.S. complicit in an atrocious war that has destabilized the region, ruined Yemen, and strengthened Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, but it would be deranged to commit the U.S. to an even larger role in enabling this disaster now that we know how much damage the intervention has already done.

The U.S. ought to be actively looking for ways to rein in the coalition, pressure them to lift their blockade, extricate the U.S. from the war, and try to repair some of the damage done by this horrific policy. I have no reason to think that the Trump administration will do any of that, but at the very least they should refrain from deepening U.S. involvement in a disgraceful and indefensible war.

about the author

Daniel Larison is a senior editor at TAC, where he also keeps a solo blog. He has been published in the New York Times Book Review, Dallas Morning News, World Politics Review, Politico Magazine, Orthodox Life, Front Porch Republic, The American Scene, and Culture11, and was a columnist for The Week. He holds a PhD in history from the University of Chicago, and resides in Lancaster, PA. Follow him on Twitter.

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