Trump Intends to Follow Up Botched Yemen Military Raid By Helping Saudis Target Civilians
Alex Emmons, Intercept, Feb 10 2017
Donald Trump’s first concrete decision as commander in chief was a major fiasco that killed nine children, eight women, and a Pindo grunt in a botched raid on AQAP. The operation, which Trump reportedly approved over dinner, also failed to catch its reported target and severely damaged a local clinic, mosque and school. It’s hard to imagine Donald Trump making the situation worse in Yemen, but he did. The Pindo-supplied bombing campaign has turned schools, hospitals, essential infrastructure and ancient heritage sites into rubble. And a Pindo-backed blockade is preventing the trade of food and basic goods, starving a country that previously relied on imports for 90% of its food. As a result, the UN this week declared that Yemen is on the brink of famine. Officials held a news conference Wednesday to announce that 19 million Yemenis, more than two-thirds of the country’s population, need some form of humanitarian assistance, 7.3 million people do not know where their next meal will come, and more than half of the country’s medical facilities have closed. Jan Egeland, a former UN official and chair of the Norwegian Refugee Council, described the situation by saying:
If bombs don’t kill you, a slow and painful death by starvation is now an increasing threat.
Even so, the toll of Trump’s botched raid was so high that it drew criticism from the ousted Hadi government, supported by Pindostan and the Toads in Yemen’s civil war. The NYT reported Tuesday that Hadi’s ministers had withdrawn their support for Pindostan to conduct ground missions in Yemen. The Pentagon and the Hadi government quickly denied the report, but Hadi’s foreign minister then said the government is conducting a “reassessment” of the raid. Trump is evidently so sensitive to the criticism that he has tried to smother it by shamefully smearing critics and trying to stifle dissent. Sean Spicer accused critics of being disrespectful of the memory of the Navy SEAL Trump sent to his death.
On Thursday, after Walnuts McCain described the raid as “a failure,” Trump, who repeatedly insisted it was a success, lashed out on Twitter likening congressional truth-telling to sedition:
And signs are that Yemen is in for more suffering at Trump’s hands. Trump’s DoD is reportedly considering a proposal to designate Yemen a formal battlefield in the GWOT, which would allow for an “intensified pace of operations, rather than one-off raids or drone strikes.” Yemen is one of seven countries included in Trump’s immigration ban. In NYC, Yemeni-Pindosis have led strikes and large protests against the ban, which separates many from their extended families. And the Washington Times reported on Wednesday that the administration is set to approve an arms transfer to the Toads that the Obama administration denied to them on human rights grounds. The shipment contains hundreds of millions of dollars worth of weapons guidance systems that would allow the Toads to convert dumb bombs into precision missiles. Targeted bombing is normally safer for civilians than indiscriminate bombing. In fact, Sec State Rex Tillerson said during his confirmation hearing that Pindoastan should provide the Toads with “better targeting intelligence” and “better targeting capability” in order to minimize “collateral damage.” But the Obama administration, despite its reluctance to offend the the Toads, halted the guidance-systems sales after concluding that the Toads were targeting civilians deliberately. The Toads began bombing Yemen in Mar 2015 after the Houthis overran Sanaa and deposed Hadi, who now splits his time between Riyadh and Aden. Pindostan has been a silent partner in the Toad campaign against the Houthis, refueling warplanes, supplying targeting intelligence and resupplying the coalition with more than $20b in weapons. Since the beginning of their campaign, the Toads have destroyed vital civilian infrastructure including farms, fisheries, water infrastructure, roads and hospitals. Other targeting decisions have sparked global outrage: the bombing of a children’s school and a school for the blind, and the October attack that turned a funeral at a community center into a “lake of blood.” Congress has not yet been notified of the weapons shipment, and the Pentagon declined to comment on it. The Toad bombing campaign has also allowed AQAP, the target of Trump’s botched raid, to grow exponentially in personnel and finances. According to State Dept reports, the group quadrupled in size the year that the Toads started bombing. The same year, AQAP seized a prominent port city which netted them an estimated $5m/day off customs tariffs and smuggled goods. AQAP is also fighting the Houthis. While Trump ramps up Pindo militarism in Yemen,
Democrats Demagogs have largely ignored the plight of the Yemenis. When a Yemeni refugee who had lost her father to Saudi bombing questioned Nancy Pelosi at a CNN town hall on Jan 31, Pelosi condemned Trump’s Muslim travel ban, but said nothing about Pindo support for the Toad war. She said;
Your family is suffering because our president is reckless.