'Criminal Carnage': New York Times Editorial Board Lambasts Trump's Support for the 'Horror' in Yemen
While it largely remains off the front pages of the newspapers, President Donald Trump's continued support for the Saudi Arabian regime's attacks on Yemen may be one of his most significant and consequential acts in office yet.
The New York Times editorial board argued in a new piece Tuesday night that the United States, along with allies Britain and France, must end their support for Saudi Arabia's military aggression.
"Again and again, Saudi-led airstrikes have struck civilian targets, slaughtering innumerable innocents," it wrote. "Last Friday, the United Nations said the coalition killed at least 22 children and four women as they fled a battle zone. Two weeks earlier, on Aug. 9, a coalition air assault struck a school bus, killing dozens of children. Countless more civilians have been killed by bombs at markets, weddings, funerals — more than 6,500 by the official count, but certainly many, many more. Millions more civilians are suffering from shortages of food and medical care."
The American support for these campaigns was shamefully spotlighted when it was revealed that the bomb that hit the school bus had been provided by the United States. The editorial board notes that President Barack Obama, who initiated American support in the conflict, blocked the sale of these types of bombs to the Saudis after one was used to destroy a funeral hall. President Donald Trump revoked that ban shortly after taking office.
The United Nations made clear that the Saudi airstrikes constitute "criminal carnage." And, the board notes, Human Rights Watch recently issued a report condemning extensive war crimes.
"The report also disparaged claims by the United States, which provides operational, logistical and intelligence support to the coalition, that the coalition has 'improved' targeting practices," the board wrote. "In fact, the report said, the United States, Britain and France, all of which sell weapons to Saudi Arabia, risk complicity in unlawful attacks."
Though it called for an end to American support for Saudi Arabia in the conflict, the board acknowledges that Trump is unlikely to comply. It notes that Congress has made some measured efforts toward addressing the catastrophe, but it has not gone far enough.
It’s time for the United States and its Western allies to stop selling arms or giving any military assistance to Saudi Arabia and its coalition partners.
The horror in Yemen has gone way past any discussion of who’s right and who’s wrong, and it has become clear that only a negotiated peace agreement can bring the killings to an end. Saudi Arabia and its allies seem to have little compunction about slaughtering children as long as more bombs can be bought, so it’s up to the enablers to call a halt.