RSN Fundraising Banner
FB Share
Email This Page
add comment
Print

Boardman writes: "Turns out the United States and the Islamic State, ISIS, are de facto allies of Saudi Arabia and its alliance of dictator states, all bent on exterminating Yemeni Houthis and pretty much any other Yemeni in the neighborhood. This Yemenicide started in earnest in March 2015."

Yemeni men visit the new cemetery in Al Joob, dug specifically to accommodate the 30 men, women and children who were killed between two strikes on a public market and along a roadside. (photo: Alex Potter/The Intercept)
Yemeni men visit the new cemetery in Al Joob, dug specifically to accommodate the 30 men, women and children who were killed between two strikes on a public market and along a roadside. (photo: Alex Potter/The Intercept)


Yemeni Genocide Proceeds Apace, Enjoying World’s Silence

By William Boardman, Reader Supported News

10 July 15

 

[NOTE: Shortly after this story was filed, the UN announced a “humanitarian pause in the country’s ongoing conflict” starting July 10 and expected to last a week. As framed by the UN, the “pause” was agreed to by “Yemen’s President Hadi” as well as the Houthis and “other parties” in Yemen, as if there were no other significant combatants. This deceitful framing omits the most aggressive, undeclared war-making carried out against Yemen by the US, Saudi Arabia, and sundry other UN members. The UN missive makes no mention of the months of Saudi-American bombing, even though the bombers must have agreed to a “pause” to make it happen. In the author’s view, the pause is a good thing from a humanitarian perspective, although the previous 5-day pause in May was relatively ineffective. From the perspective of policy and politics, the “pause” is a sham and a delusion that will have the effect of keeping some Yemenis from starving long enough so they can be bombed. In other words, the UN continues to collude in a complex of continuing war crimes and crimes against humanity, as the article that follows argues.]

US and ISIS join efforts to kill Yemenis

urns out the United States and the Islamic State, ISIS, are de facto allies of Saudi Arabia and its alliance of dictator states, all bent on exterminating Yemeni Houthis and pretty much any other Yemeni in the neighborhood. This Yemenicide started in earnest in March 2015. After years of US drone strikes proved too slow and ineffective at wiping out people in the poorest country in the Arab world, it was time to expand the arsenal of war crimes. Rarely, in discussions of Yemen, does one hear much about the violations of international law that have reduced the country to its present war-torn and devastated condition.  

Failing to acknowledge a foreign policy disaster in Yemen, the Obama administration has chosen instead to trash international law by supporting the criminal, aggressive war that Saudi Arabia’s coalition of police states launched on Yemen on March 26. Now, despite more than three months of Saudi-American terror bombing, the Houthis remain in control of northwest Yemen, their tribal homeland, as well as much of the southeast of Yemen, having overthrown the internationally-installed puppet government, later “elected” without any opponents, of President Abd Rhabbuh Mansur Hadi.

President Obama praised Hadi as his “successful” partner in attacking terrorists, by which Obama meant he was grateful to Hadi for not objecting to the US drone attacks against his own people. Hadi’s legitimacy always depended on foreign puppeteers, and it still does. Having resigned as president, fled the capital, and rescinded his resignation, Hadi fled again, to Saudi Arabia the day before the Saudi blitz began. The official story is that Hadi requested the undeclared Saudi attack on his own country. Hadi remains in the Saudi capital of Riyadh, free to go nowhere while he pretends to head a government-in-exile that is the presently desired fiction of his captor-protectors.

On July 8, from Riyadh, Hadi reportedly proposed a ceasefire in Yemen to start before the month of Ramadan ends July 17. On July 1, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon had called for a “humanitarian halt” in combat “until the end of the holy month of Ramadan.” So far, Hadi’s Saudi controllers have used the muslim holy month to rain increased terror on populated areas of Yemen, killing hundreds of civilians and Houthi fighters, with no accurate count available. July 7 saw the highest death toll in Yemen since the Saudi bombing campaign began. This bland-seeming coverage of the carnage by Reuters is riddled by propaganda deceits:

The United Nations has been pushing for a halt to air raids and intensified fighting that began on March 26. More than 3,000 people have been killed since then as the Arab coalition tries stop the Houthis spreading across the country from the north.

The Iran-allied Shi’ite Houthis say they are rebelling against a corrupt government, while local fighters say they are defending their homes from Houthi incursions. Sunni Saudi Arabia says it is bombing the Houthis to protect the Yemeni state. 

The Reuters perspective represents the mainstream consensus, which also typically includes some of the same threads of deceit as these: 

  • “The UN has been pushing …” No it hasn’t. The UN as a body has done little to protect the Yemenis, but the Security Council has done less for a country in which civil war has spanned generations. Security Council resolutions are determinedly “evenhanded” in their equal treatment of aggressors and victims. In June 2015, after two months of Saudi bombing, the Security Council expressed its “full support” for an impossibility: “a peaceful, inclusive, orderly and Yemeni-led political transition process that meets the legitimate demands and aspirations of the Yemeni people.” 

  • “pushing for a halt to air raids …” No it hasn’t. The air raids are being carried out by the nine UN member states in the Saudi Coalition, including Security Council member Jordan. The US, a permanent Security Council member, has supported the aerial war crime campaign with logistics, in-flight refueling of bombers, intelligence, air-sea rescue, and naval support for the blockade (which is also an act of war). 

  • “intensified fighting that began on March 26 …”Intensified fighting began long before March 26. Yemen’s civil war has waxed and waned over several decades. What began March 26 was the war crime nexus of bombing civilian targets by the nine-member Saudi Coalition that includes Egypt, Morocco, Jordan, Sudan, UAE, Kuwait, Bahrain, and Qatar. The Houthi rebellion is more than a decade old and gained intensity in the fall of 2014. The Houthis drove out the Yemeni government and now control the western half of the country, where most of the population lived and most of the bombing takes place. 

  • “the Arab coalition tries to stop the Houthis spreading across the country from the north …” Reuters is just wrong on this. The Houthi spread was a fact, and the “Arab coalition” failed in an ill-conceived campaign. Faced with an army advancing on the ground, the “Arab coalition” has not deployed ground troops. Without serious objection from the international community, the “Arab coalition” attacks military forces in another country with which they are not at war, as well as terror-bombing that country’s civilians with US-made cluster bombs.

  • As for spreading “from the north,” that is at best wrong, if not duplicitous. Saudi Arabia has declared the northernmost province of Yemen, Saada, a military zone in which every civilian is a presumed combatant. This is the same bloodthirsty policy that leads the US to count every drone victim as a combatant until proven otherwise. This is the same moral numbness that led the US to establish free fire zones in Viet-Nam, where every living thing was deemed an enemy. This is total war as waged by the powerful, at a distance, against the weak and almost defenseless. This is as bad as any Nazi onslaught of World War II. 

  • The absurdity of the Reuters characterization is illustrated by another UN Security Council position in support of a political solution to Yemen’s crisis in accordance with the Gulf Cooperation Council Initiative.” The Gulf Cooperation Council is an oxymoron, in that it includes six of the seven Arab states (not Iraq) on the Persian Gulf who allied determinedly NOT to cooperate with the other Persian Gulf state, Iran. Further, the Security Council absurdly supports the “Gulf Cooperation Council Initiative” when five of the six Gulf Council members (not Oman) are busily bombing Yemen in violation of international law. 

  • “The Iran-allied Shi’ite Houthis …” There is no evidence of an alliance between Iran and the Houthis, certainly not in any sense equivalent to the overt alliances waging undeclared war on Yemen. The Houthis are Shi’ite muslims, and Iran has almost surely supported them to some extent, but most claims of Iranian involvement in the current fighting are patently over-stated and lack supporting evidence. Reuters here is parroting Arab, American, and Israeli propaganda about the “threat” from Iran.

  • “say they are rebelling against a corrupt government …” Who says? Reuters doesn’t say. This is specious journalism. Yemen has a long history of corrupt government, but perhaps the Hadi government allowing US troops to wage war on Yemeni territory, killing Yemenis at will, raised the corruption bar to a new level. 

  • “local fighters say they are defending their homes …” is worse than specious journalism, it’s pretty much a lie since the main opposition to the Houthis comprises forces loyal to Hadi, as well as cohorts of both Al Qaeda and ISIS. 

  • “Sunni Saudi Arabia says it is bombing the Houthis to protect the Yemeni state”would be a laugh line were it not such a dark lie. Saudi bombing is destroying the Yemeni state in order to “save” it. The Saudis may be “protecting” the Hadi government, but only in the sense that the Mafia provides protection in a protection racket. The Saudis have longstanding territorial conflicts with the Houthis along the northwest Saudi-Yemeni border. And the Saudis are acting as if they believe their own demonizing propaganda about Iran. Saudi Arabia is more likely bombing the Houthis because they are defenseless and Saudi Arabia doesn’t dare bomb Iran.

Nobody seems to care about Yemen, not even The New Yorker

The widespread, bland disinterest in the unending victimization of Yemenis facing unrelenting, daily crimes against humanity is hardly unique to obtuse observers like Reuters. The New Yorker, which eventually distinguished itself in opposition to the horrors of Viet-Nam, last published a piece on Yemen on May 1 (according to a site search). That piece conveys the American denial of its own terrorism with a tone of mild distaste suitable to Eustace Tilley, whose monocled default opinion is to blame the victim, as Robin Wright wrote little more than a month after the Saudi-American bombardment began:    

The current Houthi rebellion – the seventh – is only the latest. The Houthi clan are Zaydi Muslims, who make up about a third of Yemen’s twenty-six million people. A once powerful people from the rugged northern highlands, they ruled an imamate for a millennium and deeply resented their reduced influence under [former President] Saleh [now a Houthi ally]. Between 2004 and 2010, they fought six other wars against his government….

The quarter-century experiment in uniting Yemen has definitively failed. There is no military solution, and there are unlikely to be any winners out of such a multilayered conflict, whatever the territorial gains….

Last week, the United States dispatched the aircraft carrier U.S.S. Teddy Roosevelt to supplement seven American warships off the Yemen coast. Washington strongly supports a political solution to the conflict in Yemen, but without interested players the risks of unintended consequences increase.

Rhetorically the US may support a “political solution” (to its own liking) and gullible reporters may accept that as some sort of reality. The reality on the ground (and on the water) is that the US supports and participates in endless terror bombing and a naval blockade. That is to say, the US supports and participates in the war crimes that are leading toward mass starvation and human devastation, what the discreet Ban Ki-moon refers to as a humanitarian crisis” or a “catastrophe,” as if there were no agency causing it. 

An editorial July 7 in The New York Times takes the same concerned-but-oblivious-to-the-genocidal-actors tone that reinforces the general pretense that no one is responsible:

Yemen has now been added to the United Nations’ list of most severe humanitarian emergencies, along with South Sudan, Syria and Iraq. It is a tragic distinction, highlighting the peril to 80 percent of the country’s 25 million citizens. The international community, including the United States, is not doing enough to push for an immediate cease-fire in the war that is ravaging the country to make it possible to deliver aid.

Yemen, a poor country, was deeply unstable even before a coalition, led by Saudi Arabia and backed by the United States, started bombing the Houthi rebel movement in late March. Last week, Ban Ki-moon, the United Nations secretary general, declared the situation a “catastrophe.”

Is it possible to commit a long string of war crimes in self-defense?

Having tiptoed up to the edge of US war crimes, the Times retreated. The rest of the editorial comprises little more than helpless handwringing, without even hinting at the most effective way to save Yemeni lives: stop the bombing. That means you, “Saudi Arabia … backed by the United States.” Like most of the rest of the world, the Times settled for asking for a reasonable-sounding impossibility, which it then undercut with another wisp of Saudi reality:      

What is needed is a permanent political solution that will ensure the Houthis, who have some legitimate grievances and are unlikely to give up, get a significant role in any new government. Negotiations should be started without preconditions. But Saudi Arabia and its allies have appeared intent on forcing the Houthis to surrender, no matter what the cost to civilians and Yemen’s cities and villages.

Well, “Saudi Arabia and its allies” includes the US and others. The Times needs to look in the mirror without flinching. Saudi Arabia and its allies need to stop their bombing. 

Ironically, they are not bombing Al Qaeda or ISIS forces in Yemen with anything like the same intensity they’re bombing Yemenis. In fact, Al Qaeda and ISIS are supplementing Saudi-American bombing with their own terror-bombing of Yemenis. For whatever reason, if there is one, the Saudi-American aerial genocide against Yeminis is making most of Yemen a much safer haven for terrorists. Yet this lunatic policy continues without serious opposition apparent anywhere. Who decided that Yemen should be treated as if it were the Haiti of the Arab world?   

If any of the umpteen candidates for president of the United States has said anything humane, useful, or even dimly relevant about Yemen, it is hard to find (and I have found nothing). And nowhere have I found any call to establish the appropriate International War Crimes Tribunal to judge the illegality of the multiple, heinous predations of the United States, Saudi Arabia, and their sundry allies, all members in good standing of the world peacekeeping authority.   



William M. Boardman has over 40 years experience in theatre, radio, TV, print journalism, and non-fiction, including 20 years in the Vermont judiciary. He has received honors from Writers Guild of America, Corporation for Public Broadcasting, Vermont Life magazine, and an Emmy Award nomination from the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.

Reader Supported News is the Publication of Origin for this work. Permission to republish is freely granted with credit and a link back to Reader Supported News.

e-max.it: your social media marketing partner
 

Comments   

We are concerned about a recent drift towards vitriol in the RSN Reader comments section. There is a fine line between moderation and censorship. No one likes a harsh or confrontational forum atmosphere. At the same time everyone wants to be able to express themselves freely. We'll start by encouraging good judgment. If that doesn't work we'll have to ramp up the moderation.

General guidelines: Avoid personal attacks on other forum members; Avoid remarks that are ethnically derogatory; Do not advocate violence, or any illegal activity.

Remember that making the world better begins with responsible action.

- The RSN Team

 
+12 # jdd 2015-07-10 13:31
Obama, who is committed to an alliance with the Saudis, is complicit in their war crimes, but so often gets a free pass from the "liberal" media. He has been protecting the evil Saudi royals since day one, and has reneged on each promise to release the 28-page chapter of the 911 Joint Commission Report, classified by Bush and detailing their direct involvement in 911, despite bi-partisan calls for its release.
 
 
+6 # lewagner 2015-07-10 18:16
If the pages have not been released, how does anyone know that they "detail Saudi involvement in 911"? Just because everybody keeps saying it doesn't make it make sense. We DON'T KNOW what those 28 pages detail, they haven't been released.
It seems what we DO already know is that the people who played the part of "hi-jackers" were almost all Saudis, and we DO already know that Bin-Laden was Saudi and that his family has long been friends with the Bush family.
I suggest that the 28 pages detail the involvement of some other country than Saudi Arabia in 9/11, not a Muslim country, but a country that every member of Congress signs a pledge to support, and the ONLY country that ONLY profited from 9/11 and these wars against Muslims.
It's also a mid-eastern country, but if you name its name, they started calling you all kinds of filthy names like "anti-Semite" and "holocaust-deni er", etc., though THAT COUNTRY is backing and profiting from all the genocide that is now going on in several countries neighboring it. And the U.S.A. is paying for it.
Yeah, release those 28 pages, and please, people, stop saying you know what's in them until they HAVE been released.
 
 
-6 # SalzburgStan 2015-07-11 05:25
A covert suggestion that Israel was behind 9-11. It is a popular theory among Muslims and Antisemites/Jew haters. As Wagner is unlikely to be Muslim that leaves the other likelihood. And he's getting likes here on RSN too. So despite all denials it is clear that the left (at least RSN commentators who are presumed leftists) does have an Antisemitism problem.
 
 
+4 # WBoardman 2015-07-11 12:30
SalsburgStan goes for the discussion stopper,
cry "Antisemitism," which does not help and
for which there is no evidence here beyond the simplistic equation: anti-Israel policy = anti-semitism.

That's just not true.
All positions need to be argued on their merits.
Not mindlessly challenged with ad hominem slurs.

One does not have to agree with everything lewagner writes
to know that there are a host of unanswered questions
about 9/11. To be persuasive, lewagner needs to lay out
a more documented argument. Meanwhile, everyone should
note that lewagner makes clear that the post is
deliberately speculative.

More to the point in this thread is the question:
how complicit is Israel in the current Saudi-American led
Yemenicide?

When I asked who decided that Yemen should be
treated like the Haiti of the Arab world, I should have
added: isn't that Gaza's job?

War crimes and crimes against humanity seem now so
commonplace and widespread that there isn't time
or energy enough to object to them all.
 
 
+13 # Farafalla 2015-07-10 13:31
Interesting the US sides with the country that funded the 9-11 attacks. We go to war with countries that have not attacked the US while cozy with those who have. The 28 pages of censored text from the 9-11 Commission demonstrate Saudi complicity in funding 9-11. Saudi Arabia funds ISIS. Pakistanis and Saudis were most the hijackers, not Iraqis, Afghans, Yemenis, Syrians or Iranians. Even our good friends the Israelis have intervened in our presidential elections, attacked a US warship, and killed American citizens in Israel and the occupied territories.

This is a true Kafkaesque mindfuck.
 
 
-5 # lewagner 2015-07-10 18:25
And HOW do you know that Saudi Arabia "funded the 9/11 attacks"?
Those 28 pages again?
Those "5 dancing Saudis" arrested in New Jersey on 9/11 with explosives in a van? Oh wait, it was "5 dancing Israelis 9/11" everybody should google-search and read up on, instead of reporting what is to be found in 28 pages that no one has seen.
Yeah, there's a mindfuck going on, and it's becoming more and more clear to me that these "progressive" news sites are a big part of it.
 
 
+2 # WBoardman 2015-07-11 12:35
Having come to lewagner's defense above,
now I find lewagner using the same sort of
unacceptable ad hominem irrelevance as
SalzburgStan.

Shame on both.
 
 
-10 # MidwestTom 2015-07-10 14:14
Remember that Obama was funded by a Saudi Prince. Nobody else with a C average can get into Harvard. Obama owes the Saudi's. That is why we are sending troops to help the fight against Assad in Syria, an enemy of the Saudi royal family.

http://www.wnd.com/2012/09/1979-article-ties-obamas-real-father-to-saudi-financier/
 
 
+12 # Merlin 2015-07-10 15:32
MidwestTom 2015-07-10 14:14

Tom,
Once again your sources are not the kind of sources to believe or even read.
James Corsi, who wrote the garbage you referenced, wrote the book against Kerry in 2004, “Unfit for Command,” touting the swiftboaters and here is the report on him by Factcheck:

Factcheck.org called Corsi's The Obama Nation "a mishmash of unsupported conjecture, half-truths, logical fallacies and outright falsehoods"

You really need to change your reading material.
 
 
-5 # MidwestTom 2015-07-10 21:41
Merlin, find below a better reference. I read your Snopes article which concentrates on Obama's expensive house, but only guesses that he got student loans to pay for Columbia and Harvard. No proof that I can see. The point is that SOMEBODY with a lot of money and power got a C student from Occidental College with visible means of support into an Ivy League School. When a Saudi Prince says he did it, and I see Obama bowing to Saudi royals, I can believe it.

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/2445630/posts
 
 
-4 # MidwestTom 2015-07-10 21:45
I am not particularly a Trump fan, but if he gains traction we may start getting answers to a lot of questions that our Obama cheerleaders, know as our mass media, have been afraid to ask. I am sure that there are many in both parties who fear the rise of Trump. He might just give us the missing 28 pages, I am dam sure none of the others will.
 
 
0 # BKnowswhitt2 2015-07-11 22:37
Please Tom to even suggest that Obama is dumb and didn't get into Harvard because he needed help from Saudi's? Come on man you have to do better! Support that with some facts .. ah you have NONE on that one. It in fact was W' Bush who needed help getting into Harvard and his silver spoon status ultimately got him there. Now i dont' HATE 'W .. though i admit i once did .. he correctly addressed what happened on 9/11 as Pure Evil something i did not agree with at the time and now totally agree with. I call him DumbYa due to the Iraq invasion and policy Hawks he cowtowed to .. but he is not Dumb .. as well Obama very bright and due to his lack of communication skills of his administration suffers to the Right Wings claims of .. Elitism .. which i don't think he is but that's why they make that claim and work to the end to get people on their sides ... W' a regular guy .. Obamma an 'elitist .... both inaccurate ....
 
 
-11 # MidwestTom 2015-07-10 14:14
Do a search under "Obama funded by Saudi Prince" and you will find many references.
 
 
+9 # WBoardman 2015-07-10 17:43
Quoting MidwestTom:
Do a search under "Obama funded by Saudi Prince" and you will find many references.


So I did the search as directed and there were links, indeed,
mostly from dubious/unrelia ble sources.

The first trusted source I came across was Snopes.com,
which rebuts MidwestTom at length:

http://www.snopes.com/politics/obama/money.asp
 
 
+1 # lewagner 2015-07-10 18:42
Oh, yes, if snopes says so, it's the Bible. (snark)
But no matter, Obama was funded by basically the same big money that Bush was funded by and that the next president will be funded by. It's not hard to look up (check out Opensecrets.org for a candidate's funding sources in any given election year). Many sources fund both candidates.
And lets not forget, talking about sources that are dubious/unrelia ble, Mr. Boardman, why do you allow the quoting of the contents of 28 pages nobody has ever seen without calling THAT "dubious/unreli able"?
 
 
+2 # WBoardman 2015-07-11 12:50
lewagner is right, as I averred before, that
to assert knowledge of those 28 unreleased pages
is inherently dubious/unrelia ble and requires
serious sourcing to be credible.

Snark is not a rebuttal of Snopes, which may or may not
have it right. Better sources on point are welcome.

More precision is needed always (almost).

Lewagner assumes a falsehood: that the next president
will be funded by the same (assumed) nefarious sources
as previous presidents.

Not so with President Sanders.

Oh, but Sanders can't win, the chorus repeats trying to
make its self-fulfilling prophecy come true. That's a different
argument with a hidden agenda that vitiates the prediction.

And predictions aren't worth anything real until after the
fact when their level of accuracy can be assessed.

And, should someone accuse me of making a prediction,
I am not.

I am, in an effort to start from a point of intellectual honesty,
allowing for the POSSIBILITY of a President Sanders,
however remote that possibility might be, just as I allow
for the possibility of a President Graham or President Trump,
or President Carson or President Perry or President Stein,
by now you get the point ;-)))
 
 
-3 # BKnowswhitt2 2015-07-11 22:40
He might have gotten dough from him no doubt the Saudi's are our allie! They believe in democracy independant of their sometimes corrupt 'leadership' .. Bush et al in Bed wiht Saudi's from DAy one! you think Obama is isolated in this regard? Give me a break ...
 
 
+7 # danireland46 2015-07-10 14:53
Shia v Sunni in the Muslim world, like the history of Catholics v Protestant in Ireland, brings one to question the value of religion in the world... just saying.
 
 
-5 # BKnowswhitt2 2015-07-10 15:23
Boardman if this is true then why did the US attack ISSIS in Syria the other day by air bombing the shit out of them?
 
 
+5 # WBoardman 2015-07-10 17:45
In answer to BKnowswhitt2's question,
didn't I say the policy was incoherent or
lunatic or some other such characterizatio n?
 
 
-1 # BKnowswhitt2 2015-07-11 15:46
O.K. you make points. And remember Rwanda? Clinton ant the USA did nothing. Also Darfur Obama et al did nothing. The exchange there was for exchange of info on terrorism against the west vs. muslim extremies .. with the US agreeing to not intervene in Darfur. Though i don't agree with either lack in some ways the reality is that we as USA have to pick and choose where how and why we intervene .. then we have different 'elected' leadership with different foreign policy approaches .. in regard to the great mess there between ISSIs in Iraq and the corrupt regimes that we end up supporting and almost always come back to bite us on the ass later ... sometimes it is the lesser of the two evils to choose from .. but in the big question Who was EVIL first .. we certainly try to represent the other side overall in my view .. though it's worth pointing out these dicotomies as you do in this case ...
 
 
-7 # Candroid 2015-07-10 15:29
Leaving aside the important dicussion about whether US policies and actions in Yemen or elsehwere are brutal/ warmongering/ counterproducti ve/ disproportionat e/ unjust/ unwise (or not), is the author seriously alleging that it is Presidential or US military *intent* to exterminate or destroy the Houthis?
The crime of "genocide" has a strict definition, requiring intent. Genocide is defined in international law in the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Genocide:
"Article II: In the present Convention, genocide means any of the following acts committed *with intent* to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such:
(a) Killing members of the group;
(b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;
(c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;
(d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;
(e) Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group." (Emphasis added.)
Seems to me that in his enthusiasm to condemn US policy and action in Yemen, the author onevertheless fails to meet the test of genocide. If he were only a journalist, this kind of sloganeering might be forgiveable. But he is a former jurist, and should be aware of the dangers of bandying around such terms as genocide... it becomes harder to prosecute real genocides when any and all unjustfied killings are called genocides.
 
 
+11 # Radscal 2015-07-10 17:00
"(a) Killing members of the group;
(b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;
(c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part; "

That sounds EXACTLY like what the US-backed assault on Yemen is doing.
 
 
+11 # WBoardman 2015-07-10 18:00
Radscal seems on point to me.

Intent is clear: everyone intends to kill Houthis.
The purpose behind the intent, either conscious or
unconscious, remains to be determined.

Radscal is right to cite "in whole or in part" since
a perfect genocide is extremely challenging.

Candroid somewhat misreads my argument, since
the role of the US so far is more like handmaiden to
genocide, probably wrapped in denial (fighting the
Iranians, the war on terror, mythical monsters, whatever).

While I don't know one way or another, it would not
surprise me to discover that the Saudis did indeed
have cold-blooded genocidal thoughts in some quarters.
Certainly Saudi actions are consistent with genocidal
intent, since, even officially, they're killing only one fighter
for each murdered civilian.

Candroid is sensible to suggest caution when using
"genocide" – but using Article II, how are the attacks on
the Houthis NOT genocidal?

I would look forward to the war crimes trial
if I thought there would ever be one.
 
 
+9 # Radscal 2015-07-10 18:20
Thanks Mr. B.

Folks often seem to believe that "Genocide" means the attempted total extermination of a people. Even in quoting the law, Candroid seemed to miss that the quote perfectly described the situation in Yemen.

In the Big Picture, the geographically- challenged need to understand that Yemen, Somalia and Djoubati squeeze the Gulf of Aden/Red Sea into an extremely narrow strait through which all shipping passing through the Suez Canal must pass.

Djoubati is basically a wholly-owned subsidiary of the U.S. military, while the other two have been rendered into failed states incapable of exerting any influence on this economically crucial dot on the global map.

Puppet regimes might be better for the 0.01%, but genocidal neutering serves their purposes.
 
 
-5 # SalzburgStan 2015-07-11 05:28
Last time I looked that was normal in wars. this may be a particularly nasty one, but I've yet to see any evidence of genocide.
 
 
+4 # WBoardman 2015-07-11 12:51
The evidence is all over the ground.

(see Article II exchange above.)
 
 
+11 # Vardoz 2015-07-10 17:29
This mindset- the silence as genocide takes place, whoever it is, Rowanda, blacks here, our killing a million Iraqis the whole ugly slaughter house that mankind perpetrates on one another is why humans as a species are on our way to extinction. We cannot rise up to address the serious problems murder,
genocide, we have hit our limit when it comes to the amount of destruction and savagery we allow ourselves to tolerate and stand by in silence as our planet is dying all around us. Like army ants blindly carrying out their programming, we cannot grasp the bigger picture.
 
 
-1 # Candroid 2015-07-10 20:09
1 of 2 ~ Importantly, the US is a 'hedged' (by reservations to the Convention) and thus not a full signatory to the Genocide Convention, and also does not accept the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court (ICC) at which prosecutions for the crime of genocide can be brought against political and military leaders or others.
The Convention, like all civilized criminal law, reqires proving intention to commit the crime and having carried it out (or, possibly, conspiring to do so). Intent can be inferred in the absence of genocidal orders and propaganda, but the threshold is correctly high for inferring intent. See for example www.ushmm.org/confront-genocide/justice-and-accountability/introduction-to-the-definition-of-genocide.
The comments focus on the *acts* involved here, which may or may not 'fit' the definition, but is WBoardman alleging that Obama or the Chiefs of Staff are now ordering, or are hell-bent on, the elimination of the Houthis?
 
 
-4 # Candroid 2015-07-10 20:09
2 of 2 ~ I believe there are no such US official orders AND that notwithstanding high body counts it would challenging at the least to infer genocidal intent on the part of the US.
Mr Boardman's retires to probably's and accessory to's, and then to saying that because lots of people are being killed so it must be genocide (or he would not be surprised if it was). He also retreats to the *acts* of the killing 'in part or in whole' of the Houthis.
US action vs Yemen/Houthis may be abhorrent, unlawful and even a war crime or crime againt humanity (or not). Hard to determine through the current fog of war and lies. But genocide on the part of the US? At best, very, very unlikely.
 
 
+1 # WBoardman 2015-07-11 13:12
In post #2 of 2, Candroid misrepresents my argument.

The Houthis have been targeted by name again and again
by all the combatants against them, usually with the
cover story that they are some sort of "agents of Iran."

The slipperiness of Candroid's argument is apparent when
he says I "retreat" when I am in fact citing the precise
language of the Genocide Convention brought to this
table by Candroid.

The fact that Candriod is not persuaded by my argument
has little relevance to whether it's accurate.

And Candroid's insistence on calling it "US action" distorts
reality and gives Cacdroid a false premise to buid his
argument on. As I went to greats lengths to explain in the
article, the US is enabling war crimes by other nations
[see list in article], creating what I just realized, could
fairly be described as a "nexus of evil."

Bit I prefer to call the activity war crimes and crimes
against humanity.
 
 
+3 # Radscal 2015-07-11 10:50
" Importantly, the US is a 'hedged' (by reservations to the Convention) and thus not a full signatory to the Genocide Convention, and also does not accept the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court (ICC) "

Yep.

Also, at the UN the US, with its permanent Security Council seat, can veto any Resolutions it opposes.

The U.S.and Israel are rogue states that accept no responsibility to the International Community, regardless of how heinous their actions.

And unless you believe that the U.S. is accidentally fulfilling those descriptions of genocide you quoted, intent is obvious.
 
 
+2 # WBoardman 2015-07-11 13:03
Candroid's question to me (in post #1) has already
been asked and answered.

Nowhere have I intended to make such a claim.

The role of the US appears to be as a genocide enabler
that doesn't care who gets killed as long as it's not
Americans.

That is a morally squalid position, but wholly consistent with
Candroid's description of the US lack of commitment
to the Genocide Convention, ICC, and so on.

Just because the US may be clever enough not to have
Yemeni blood on its hands doesn't absolve it from
some responsibility for the blood on the ground.

Ultimately, one does not know what is in the minds of
those in the White House or the Pentagon, but Candroid
chooses to assume an unprovable decency. And that's fine as an assumption, with no apparent support.

What is not an assumption is US behavior: since the beginning
of Saudi-alliance bombing, the US has provided material support and continues to do so.

At the same time, US policy calls for a"political settlement"
that is made less likely with every bomb.

Or put another way, Candroid assumes US leadership is
peaceful or some such – which is why one is inundated
with the cries of American leaders to stop the carnage?

Let's be real.
 
 
+2 # Radscal 2015-07-11 18:58
Some other interesting connections:

The bin Laden family are from Yemen.

al Qaeda took "credit" for the attack on the USS Cole while anchored of Yemen.

Both Bush II and Obama have ordered scores of "targeted assassinations" of "al Qaeda linked terrorists" in Yemen.

al Qaeda in the Arabia Peninsula (AQAP) took "credit" for the Charlie Hebdo massacre/event.

And yet, the US/Saudi "war" in Yemen is fighting the Houthis, who are enemies of al Qaeda.
 
 
-2 # Candroid 2015-07-11 17:27
My focussed and only point, made to a jurist, is that the international *crime* of genocide has a statute, and that statute (the Convention) necessarily does two things, namely define the acts that constitute the crime (actus rea), and require that intent be present (mens rea). Mr Boardman's article accused the US, i.e. its Commander in Chief and/or military leaders sufficiently senior to be worthy of being accused of the crime (i.e. not mere grunts), of the crime of genocide. Some facts on the ground described by Mr B. do appear to support elements of the *act* of genocide, but the element of US intent is not established by its 'merely' supplying weapons, or being allied with, or funding those who may be committing the crime of genocide. Pls re-read my comments: I did say that the US may have committed, or be responsible for, war crimes or crimes against humanity here (as it has been elsewhere in past decades). But imprecise, inapplicable and/or sloganeering use of the term "genocide" devalues and denudes this critically important term, with the net, bad effect that genocide may well become harder to prosecute. Which notwithstanding the US's appalling self-exemption from the ICC règime, would be a great pity. Concerned US citizens and thought leaders have a duty to join their international confères in bringing an end to international impunity wherever it occurs, and basic precision with respect to whom we accuse of what is an essential part of that effort. O&O.
 
 
0 # Candroid 2015-07-11 17:33
Oops typos... read "régime" and "confrère".
 
 
0 # WBoardman 2015-07-12 11:16
Candroid seems to share my opinion on substance,
but takes issue with calling our appalling behavior
equivalent to participating in genocide.

Candroid characterizes my article as a sort of final
judgment, but the better legal analogy is to see it
as an indictment. Or is there someone out there who does
NOT believe there is ample evidence to support a
finding of probably cause?

Again, I ask, in what way is the multi-national attack
on Yemen NOT genocide?
 
 
-1 # BKnowswhitt2 2015-07-11 22:46
Independant of facts Boardman identifies in this article. We need Saudi's and other Middle Eastern countries to fight the fight against the imperialism of the extremie Sunni's fighting alongside the Muslim Extremies to take over and kill innocents in Iraq and kill any chance of Democracy happening there. The Middle East is a complex place. For the greater part of the past century we were able to co exist with them given our differences. The change came with imperialist crazies like Kadaffy and Hussein coming into power and yea we did some wrong and still have taht history with Iran .. however there have been democratic elements running through it all .. the great mistake we made was invading occupying and trying to run Iraq ... this is what comes home to roost today .. it was an unnecessary intervention by the USA. However that being said now there is no turning back we are beholden to what we have created and now are responsible to a great degree about it's outcome ..
 
 
0 # WBoardman 2015-07-12 11:25
"Independent of facts" says BKnowswhitt2 –
and that about sums up US policy for decades.
How many decades? Minimally two, maybe seven or more.

The Saudis ARE extreme Sunnis.
Wahhabism is at the heart of fundamentalist uprisings,
actively promoted by the Saudis for decades.

Sadly, Hussein and Qaddafi represented a level of
stability that the US has broken, for no discernible
legitimate reason.

This is the Empire of Chaos.
The trick is to understand it.

"There is no turning back" is not a policy.
There was no turning back in Viet-Nam, until we turned back.
There is ALWAYS turning back.
There is not always the wisdom and courage to turn back.
 

THE NEW STREAMLINED RSN LOGIN PROCESS: Register once, then login and you are ready to comment. All you need is a Username and a Password of your choosing and you are free to comment whenever you like! Welcome to the Reader Supported News community.

RSNRSN