Jeremy Konyndyk explains how the Trump administration’s unsuccessful full-court press to kill S.J.Res.54 today exposes their earlier claims to want an end to the war to be hollow:

When Mattis and Pompeo made their statements at the end of last month, I was very skeptical that their calls for a ceasefire meant anything:

Konyndyk responded:

I suppose it was a fairly cynical interpretation of the administration’s position, but especially on Yemen the administration has proven that it can’t be trusted and will say or do just about anything to continue U.S. support for the coalition. If it means feigning interest in peace in order to keep the war going, that is what they will do. If it means telling senators that ending U.S. involvement in the war will hurt peace negotiations, that is what they’ll say. Indeed, Mattis made exactly that claim in the absurd briefing that he and Pompeo gave earlier today. The message that the administration delivered today was that the U.S. must keep enabling war to facilitate peace. Paired with their opposition to a new resolution at the U.N., this was obviously nonsense intended to make some senators waver in their support for the Senate resolution. Fortunately for the U.S. and for the people of Yemen, it didn’t work.

The last few days have proven that the administration’s call for a ceasefire was not part of a genuine effort to bring the war to a conclusion, and when confronted with a draft resolution that would have supported the demand for a ceasefire the administration balked because they didn’t want to anger the Saudis. Pompeo and Mattis even had the gall to argue that ending U.S. involvement in the war would make things worse in Yemen, as if the Saudi coalition hasn’t already driven the country to the brink of famine with our help. Meanwhile, all of their statements and actions show that their primary and perhaps only concern is preserving the relationship with Riyadh. Yemen can’t wait for an end to the war, and the Trump administration is doing what it can to make sure that the war doesn’t end.

Konyndyk adds:

The Trump administration is so consumed with its Iran obsession and so wedded to its dishonest pro-Saudi propaganda at this point that they are determined to shift the blame for the massive humanitarian disaster to hide the fact that the Saudi coalition and the U.S. that bear most of the responsibility for it. They have opposed every attempt to disentangle the U.S. from this disaster, and they have repeatedly chosen to assist the Saudi coalition with the full knowledge that in doing so they are potentially sentencing millions and millions of innocent people to hunger and death.

Konyndyk concludes:

The Trump administration is a willing party to the deliberate starvation of up to half the population of Yemen, and they have fought tooth and nail against every effort to put an end to U.S. complicity in this horror. Today they were beaten by opponents of the war, and we have to ensure that they lose their fight to continue enabling the destruction and starvation of Yemen.