Home/Daniel Larison/The Saudi Coalition Slaughters More Yemenis With U.S. Support

The Saudi Coalition Slaughters More Yemenis With U.S. Support

Rubble aftermath of a Saudi airstrike on a Yemeni neighborhood in 2015. Almigdad Mojalli/Voice of America

Two more Saudi coalition airstrikes struck civilian targets in Yemen this week, killing at least seven people in an attack on a mosque in northwestern Yemen and as many as 16 killed in the bombing of a residential building in the southern province of Dhale:

Yemen’s rebels and tribal leaders say an airstrike by the Saudi-led coalition has killed at least seven people including children, when it hit a mosque in the northwestern Amran province.

The tribal leaders say the airstrike took place earlier on Monday in the district of Sawd.

The Houthi-run al-Masirah satellite TV has said the dead were from one family and included two children.

Airstrikes by the Saudi-led coalition fighting Yemen’s rebels on Tuesday killed at least 13 civilians, including children, when they hit a residential building in southern Dhale province, tribal leaders and health officials said.

The Houthis had previously said they would launch no further drone and missile attacks into Saudi Arabia if the Saudis stopped their attacks. These bombings were Riyadh’s answer.

Dozens of innocent civilians were killed in these attacks, but these Yemeni deaths still barely register in Western media. The war on Yemen will have been raging for four and a half years this week. For fifty-four months, the U.S. has armed, supported, and shielded the Saudi coalition as it commits thousands upon thousands of war crimes and creates the world’s worst humanitarian crisis, and this president has gone out of his way to make sure the arms and support continue to flow.

While the war on Yemen has once again faded from view, the Saudi coalition continues to slaughter Yemeni civilians with impunity using U.S. weapons and assistance. Even as the U.S.-backed bombing campaign takes more lives, the president has the gall to go in front of the U.N. General Assembly and accuse Iran of fueling the war in Yemen when it is our government and the governments of our client states that are responsible. The same administration that is quick to blame Iran for everything in the region will never say anything against their beloved Saudi clients when they murder defenseless people in their homes and at prayer.

Former U.S. ambassador to Saudi Arabia Robert Jordan urges Congress to put a stop to all U.S. support, and chastises the president for his ongoing role in enabling this atrocious war:

Ideally, Congress and the president would work together on foreign policy, but the president’s unwillingness to rein in Saudi misconduct means Congress now has a responsibility to act; Yemen can’t wait for a course correction by a future administration.

The stakes are too great for Congress to be cowed by calls for sympathy with Saudi Arabia after this month’s attacks. If Congress fails to act, U.S. arms will kill more innocent civilians in Yemen as the chance for peace dwindles, impunity for Khashoggi’s murder will embolden tyrants around the world, and the war in Yemen will continue empowering terrorists and destabilizing an already risky region.

The current relationship with Riyadh is bad for the U.S. and it has been catastrophic for Yemen. Having the Saudis as a client has not only involved the U.S. in the disgraceful war on Yemen for almost half a decade, but it threatens to involve our country in a new war with Iran. We owe the Saudis nothing, and it is about time that we stopped indulging them and catering to their wishes. The president won’t put American interests first, so Congress will have to force him.

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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