Yemen Civil War


Joshua Elwess (12th), Reporter

Yemen, a country in the Middle East, is currently being demolished by a terrible civil war. A New York Times article stated, “experts say Yemen has become the worst humanitarian crisis in the world, and 14 million people could soon be on the brink of starvation, according to the United Nations.”

In 2011, Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi, President Ali Abdullah Saleh’s deputy, was given the power of the presidency. This happened because an Arab Spring uprising forced Saleh out of power.

During Hadi’s rule, attacks by jihadists, corruption, unemployment, a separatist movement in the south, and other problems happened. Many Yemenis that were disillusioned with the transition supported the Houthi movement that tried to take control of territory in Yemen.

In late 2014 and early 2015, the Houthis took over Sanaa (the capital of Yemen). They tried to take control over the whole country after that, making President Hadi flee from the country.

In response to this, Saudi Arabia and eight other countries made an air campaign that is meant to bring Hadi’s government back. According to a BBC article, the coalition receives logistical and intelligence support from France, the United States, and the United Kingdom.

According to an article from Al-Jazeera that was written in April 2019, more than 70,000 people have been killed in the civil war. The article states that the ACLED (Armed Conflict and Location Event Data Project) states, “The Saudi-led coalition was responsible for the highest number of civilian deaths – more than 4,800 since 2016, the group said. The Houthis, meanwhile, had killed 1,300 civilians in direct attacks, it added.”

The UN has described Yemen as having the worst humanitarian crisis “in the world.” According to a 2019 Human Needs Overview for Yemen report, 14.3 million people are classified as being in acute need.

A CBS News article that was written in the month of November in 2018, titled, “Yemen’s most innocent victims: 85,000 children under 5 may have died from starvation, report says,” has this statement: “‘Barriers to importing and distributing supplies contribute to and are compounded by a spiraling economic crisis that has seen the cost of food nearly double since the conflict escalated in 2015,’ the new report says, and when aid supplies reach the impoverished country, ‘armed checkpoints crisscross the country, delaying distribution’ in addition to ‘frequent attacks on food processing and distribution.’”

Bernie Sanders, a Democratic senator, has tweeted, “The people of Yemen desperately need humanitarian help, not more bombs.” Sanders is in support of ending U.S. support for the Saudi-led intervention in Yemen.

I interviewed a fellow senior about what he has to say about certain facts about Yemen and the civil war. I asked him if he knew much about the Yemen Civil War and told him to explain what he knew. He stated, “The Yemen Civil War is fueled by American greed.”

I asked him what he thought about the fact that many newspapers have reported that tens of thousands of people have died in the conflict. He said, “They should eat some fat burgers. Preferably from In-N-Out. Wendy’s sucks. I am not surprised that industrialization has caused so many deaths and it’s a shame that they can’t enjoy a fat and juicy In-N-Out Burger.”

I stated that Humans Right Watch has stated this: “The UN considers Yemen to be the world’s largest humanitarian crisis, with 14 million people at risk of starvation and repeated outbreaks of deadly diseases like cholera. This crisis is linked to the armed conflict.” I asked him what he thought about this quote.

He said, “Big deal, look at Venezuela. They don’t even have an In-N-Out. Weaklings. Its a real shame that corporate greed has led to mass armed conflicts and starvation of children and it is up to the United States to help and stop these Yemen bois from killing themselves.”

My last question for him was if he had any hope for the war to end. He stated, “I have very little hope that the United States will do the moral thing as their goal is money.”

President Trump has argued that if the US does not give weapons to Saudi Arabia, the country will get weapons from US adversaries. This contrasts with this statement made in the month of April in 2019 by The Intercept: “But a highly classified document produced by the French Directorate of Military Intelligence shows that Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are overwhelmingly dependent on Western-produced weapon systems to wage their devastating war in Yemen.”

According to a New York Times article in April of 2019, There was a bipartisan resolution in the US that would have ended “American military involvement in Saudi Arabia’s civil war in Yemen.” However, President Trump vetoed it. Hopefully, the war will end before major humanitarian disasters happen.