by Scott Creighton
If you were a doctor, a patient or a school-kid in Yemen this past weekend, you had a bad time. A real bad time.
If you were a Big Businessman associated with the Military Industrial Complex here in the land of the Big PX, you had a good weekend. A really good weekend.
And it’s all thanks to Saudi Arabia.
Three events took place this past weekend that folks should be paying more attention to. I know if George W. Bush were still in the White House, we would be. But as it turns out we are ruled by President Left Cover, so, no one hardly noticed.
On Saturday, coalition forces bombed a school in Yemen killing 10 children and wounding another 28. Coalition spokesman Gen. Ahmad Assiri said that the school they bombed was “a major training camp for militia” adding later a rather Israeli-sounding defense for their brutality:
“They [Houthi government in Yemen] use civilian installations as the command and control centers of their organization. Don’t focus on the technical details. This is a war. Collateral damage could happen, mistakes could happen.” Gen. Ahmad “Learning from the IDF Spin Doctors” Assiri
So government schools in Yemen are actually training centers for terrorism, huh? That’s why they say they bombed them. Then they say the collateral damage is not their fault, but rather the fault of the government in the area that put those training facilities so close to the children. If that doesn’t remind you of what the IDF said about targeting UN schools in Gaza, you need to brush up on your history.
Apparently targeting schools (and the children in them) is a new thing for coalition forces bombing Yemen back into submission. According to the New York Times, this seems to be a growing trend.
One bombardment in the village of Birken in the Razih District, near Yemen’s northern border with Saudi Arabia, struck the home of Ali Okri, a school principal, killing his wife and four of their children.
Then, in what has become known in the war here as a double tap, a second airstrike killed four more of Mr. Okri’s relatives as rescuers were trying to free them from the rubble.
As disturbing as this potentially developing trend is, it simply follows suit of another Saudi coalition trademark: bombing hospitals.
“But for the Saudi coalition, bombing medical facilities has become business as usual. In October, the coalition bombed an MSF-supported hospital in Yemen’s Haydan district, destroying the only emergency medical facility serving 200,000 people. (Doctors Without Borders is also known as Médecins Sans Frontières, or MSF.) In December, airstrikes destroyed an MSF clinic in Taiz while doctors were treating the wounded from a nearby Saudi airstrike in a park. And in January, the coalition destroyed a hospital in Razeh district, killing five people — and killing an ambulance driver working for MSF later that month.
Those strikes have been widely reported because they targeted a prominent Western charity, but the coalition has likely carried out far more attacks on Yemeni-run hospitals. During the first eight months of the war, between March and November 2015, the International Red Cross received hundreds of reports on attacks on health facilities throughout the country.” Alex Emmons, The Intercept
Yesterday the Saudis continued in their efforts to destroy medical facilities in Yemen when they attacked yet another Doctor’s Without Borders facility in the Abs district of Hajja province killing 11 people and wounding 19 more.
“A witness said the attack on the clinic, located in the Abs district in Yemen’s northern Hajja province and supported by Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), could not be immediately evacuated because rescue crews feared more bombings were coming as warplanes continued flying over the area.” Common Dreams
They feared the now all-to-common “double tap” strike, so they had to let victims suffer in the rubble. Nice huh?
In a rare move, State Department spokesman Elizabeth Trudeau condemned the Saudi attack on the medical facility. But that doesn’t mean anything will change. We are still refueling Saudi Arabia’s US-made warplanes at record-setting rates and still signing billion dollar weapons deals with the brutal dictatorship as they kill civilians, children, doctors and patients with impunity.
Since coming to office, President Peace Prize has signed 48 billion dollars worth of weapons deals with Saudi Arabia which is 3 times what George Bush sold them during his 8 years in office. Twenty billion of that was sold to the Saudis since Obama got them to head his “Regime Change Yemen” project.
And this weekend, in the wake of all this terror being unleashed by the Saudi dictators on the people of Yemen, Obama signed yet another deal.
“The U.S. State Department announced last week that it has approved a $1.15 billion deal to ship military equipment and weapons to Saudi Arabia, including tanks, machine guns and grenade launchers. This deal comes on top of the more than $20 billion in weapons that the U.S. has shipped to Saudi Arabia since March 2015, when the coalition began its military campaign.” Alter Net
A few in the Senate have decided to push back on Obama on this deal. They figure enough is enough I guess.
“Congressional opposition to the arms sale came as the Saudi-led, U.S.-backed military coalition broke an unsteady five-month ceasefire in Yemen last week and resumed bombing in the capital city of Sana’a—prompting immediate reports of civilian deaths. On Saturday, Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) reported that an airstrike on a school in northern Yemen killed 10 children and wounded 28 others.
Paul and Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), both of whom sit on the Foreign Relations Committee, are outspoken critics of the coalition.
“If you talk to Yemeni Americans, they will tell you in Yemen this isn’t a Saudi bombing campaign, it’s a U.S. bombing campaign,” Murphy said in June. “Every single civilian death inside Yemen is attributable to the United States.” Common Dreams
Saudi Arabia would not be attacking Yemen were the United States not instructing them, and even paying them, to do so. So yes, every single civilian death inside Yemen is directly attributable not just to the United States, but more to the point, to President Barack Obama.
Years ago the Houthis got tired of living under the repression of our installed dictator Ali Abdullah Saleh (1990 to 2012) so they overthrew him with the help of a popular uprising. At first, Hillary Clinton supported the idea of keeping the billionaire Saleh in power but when it became clear that he needed to go, she orchestrated a “one candidate election” in the country featuring Saleh’s Vice Dictator, former President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi. Hillary said the election was wonderfully “democratic”
That didn’t last long and the Houthis decided to take power themselves because Hadi was no different that Saleh in that he was just another version of a brutal dictator working on behalf of U.S. interests.
President Obama doesn’t wish to go down in history as the leader who lost Yemen. Our “national interests” wont like that. So he decided to get the Saudis to do him a solid and attack the Houthi government in Yemen on his behalf.
The Saudis (under the guidance of US military advisors) are basically running a state-backed campaign of terror in Yemen. They are targeting soft-targets of opportunity in the country in the hopes that they can deteriorate the quality of life for the average citizen so much that they will turn against the Houthis and desire to go back to living under a U.S.-backed dictatorship rather than continue with the suffering we are causing them now. It is a despicable tactic of war and reasonably understood by most to be a war-crime.
That’s the idea behind targeting schools and hospitals and electric plants and community market places. Make the people suffer for the crime of rejecting our rule.
This past weekend has been horrific for the people of Yemen. But they know horrific. We provided them with horrific dictators for decades. We made them tough so they’ll get over it.
What the Obama administration and the monsters who work for them don’t seem to understand is that this kind of protracted terrorism doesn’t win hearts and minds and it doesn’t break them. It steels them against our influence. Like the senator said, they know it’s us, they know we bear the responsibility for each and every one of those civilian deaths.
It’s time the Democrats over here understood that and acknowledged the fact that their hero, Barack Obama, has hands literally dripping with the blood of all those children who died this weekend and the many more likely to die unless they stand up and take a stand against his brutal adventurism in Yemen just like would do in a heart beat if it were George W. Bush doing it.
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