The US Senate has voted 56 to 41 to sorta-kinda eventually end America’s part in the Saudi-led war in Yemen, one step out of a great many that will need to happen in order to end the worst humanitarian crisis on the face of the earth.

The joint resolution still allows US drones to patrol Yemeni airspace and rain death from above in its “war on terror” against Al Qaeda, and it is unable to pass in the House this year due to an unbelievably sleazy rider that House Republicans attached to the unrelated Farm Bill. The resolution isn’t expected to change much in terms of actual US participation in the war besides some  intelligence and reconnaissance assistance to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates against the Houthi rebels, since the US has already ended its assistance in refueling Saudi jets on their bombing campaigns as of last month. Trump is expected to veto any Yemen resolutions, and the Senate resolution was not passed with a veto-proof supermajority.

Still, it’s a step. A step in the right direction, both toward congress imposing some checks and balances on the Executive Branch’s heretofore obscenely unchallenged war powers, and toward the US government moving into opposition to the brazen war crimes being inflicted upon the Yemeni people by America’s close ally Saudi Arabia. And I think that last bit is worth taking a moment to think about.

Research from the Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project indicates that up to 80,000 people have been killed in this war, which would be eight times more than the 10,000 figure we’ve been hearing from the mainstream media for years on those rare occasions they’ve felt like mentioning Yemen. And it is important to note that this number applies to deaths by military violence only, not to the other untold tens of thousands who have died of starvation and cholera as a result of Saudi Arabia’s inhuman blockades on imports and its deliberate targeting of farms, fishing boats, marketplaces, food storage sites and cholera treatment centers with airstrikes. Just for children under the age of five, the death toll due to starvation alone is believed to be around 85,000.

So that’s what’s going on while the bureaucrats on Capitol Hill are slowly pushing their pencils and the diplomats are making nicey nicey with theocratic Gulf state tyrants. If Saudi Arabia were not an ally of the United States, this matter would be treated very, very differently.

In May of last year, then-Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was given a memo by his assistant, virulent Iran hawk Brian Hook. The memo, intended to educate the struggling political neophyte Tillerson on the finer points of State Department manipulation, laid out the beltway’s standard protocol for dealing with Washington’s allies and its enemies. Hook said human rights issues are something the US government presses its enemies on but not its allies, naming China, Russia, North Korea, and Iran as examples of US enemies who violate human rights, and naming Egypt, the Philippines, and Saudi Arabia as examples of US allies who violate human rights.

“In the case of US allies such as Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and the Philippines, the Administration is fully justified in emphasizing good relations for a variety of important reasons, including counter-terrorism, and in honestly facing up to the difficult tradeoffs with regard to human rights,” Hook wrote. “One useful guideline for a realistic and successful foreign policy is that allies should be treated differently — and better — than adversaries. Otherwise, we end up with more adversaries, and fewer allies. The classic dilemma of balancing ideals and interests is with regard to America’s allies. In relation to our competitors, there is far less of a dilemma. We do not look to bolster America’s adversaries overseas; we look to pressure, compete with, and outmaneuver them. For this reason, we should consider human rights as an important issue in regard to US relations with China, Russia, North Korea, and Iran. And this is not only because of moral concern for practices inside those countries. It is also because pressing those regimes on human rights is one way to impose costs, apply counter-pressure, and regain the initiative from them strategically.”

And indeed this is exactly the sort of behavior we see from the US government, not just from its official branches like the State Department but from its unofficial ones as well, including the mainstream media. Just look at the France protests, which have seen mass arrests and protesters getting eyes shot out and hands blown off by brutal police responses while receiving nary a whisper of commentary from the plutocrat-owned talking heads, yet if this were happening in Russia we all know it would be forced into viral trends and pushed into public consciousness at every opportunity.

If Saudi Arabia existed in the “enemies” column instead of the “allies”, we’d have been seeing constant mass media coverage of its butchery in Yemen for almost four years now. MSNBC, which recently went more than a year without mentioning Yemen even a single time, would be tearfully depicting the dying children with the same urgency it covered the “uniquely horrific” sarin gas attack alleged to have taken place in Syria last year, and doing so regularly. The starving children of Yemen would be on the forefront of western consciousness instead of the back burner, and demands to make it stop would be screaming from coast to coast.

That’s seriously it. That one stupid, silly shift from the “allies” column to the “enemies” column would make the difference between night and day in the western world’s response to the slaughter in Yemen. The Saudi royals would be vilified, and that vilification would be used to manufacture support for sanctions and strategies to shove the KSA off the world stage. CIA covert ops would be implemented to sow discord, and starvation sanctions would target Saudi civilians to help stoke the flames of discontent. Regime change would take place via invasion or staged coup, and then a puppet regime would be installed which would quietly make the shift to selling all Saudi oil in US dollars.

And in the meantime, God help Trump if he was stupid enough to stay cozied up with the Saudis, because guess what? There’s a lot more evidence for Saudi collusion than there is for Russia collusion. The all-you-can-eat nothingburger of Russiagate would have been replaced by far more concrete and straightforward stories about direct financial ties to the Saudi government, an emissary for a Saudi prince who wanted to help Trump win the 2016 election, and remarks by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman that Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner is “in his pocket”. Trump’s creepy glowing orb picture alone would have mainstream Saudi-gate conspiracy theorists in intractable hysterics.

Of course none of this would ever have had a chance to happen, because if Saudi Arabia were not a US ally, it would have been invaded and forcibly regime changed immediately after 9/11.

But Saudi Arabia is a US ally, and a very close one indeed. Its petrodollar deal, its prime strategic location and its ability to move vast amounts of wealth around behind a veil of total government opacity in the facilitation of sociopathic agendas has made it a priceless asset in the US-centralized empire’s relentless quest for global domination. This remains true in spite of whatever particular quibbles that empire might happen to have with MBS, and in spite of any journalists’ unfortunate encounters with any bone saws.

The struggle to dominate the Middle East remains one of the foremost priorities of elite power in this world, and they’re going to do everything they can not to let a few piles of dead children interfere with an important alliance. The butchery in Yemen is the single worst thing that is happening in the world today, and because of the power dynamics that are at play, we’re going to need a whole lot more than a feel-good Senate vote to heal it. It’s a step. We must keep stepping.


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17 responses to “Imagine If Saudi Arabia Was Not A US Ally”

  1. BDS … Free Assange and other Truthtellers.

  2. “The other America, MSM wants to keep from you (and Australia.)

  3. No mention of the UN in all of this? The UN have PROVED bias and complicit in the murder of hundreds and thousand of innocent men women and children, NOT once has the UN taken the criminal US, Israel and it’s allies (that includes Australia) to trial or charge, why???
    Might I suggest because they are in bed together, the whole whoring bloody lot of em!

    Check out this short clip of WHAT HAPPENED TO AUSTRALIA”s 21 million given to the Clinton Foundation (Bounty Hunters) by DOWNER, a past Liberal WHORE who actually worked for the Globalists Agenda, and NOT for Australia. The very same deceit is being orchestrated by the current liberal whore, Morrison!

  4. With yet another US military withdrawal from the war-torn Middle East on the horizon, this time in Yemen, we can now see a clear pattern emerging:
    The US military coalition illegally invades Iraq based on lies, but it becomes a quagmire and then Iran moves in to take advantage of the power vacuum.
    US/NATO forces then send their terrorist proxy armies into Syria to topple the Assad regime, but the plan fails when Russia intervenes and so Iran’s Shiite proxy forces are able to move in again, and now occupy strategic areas of Syria.
    Hezbollah, probably Iran’s most notorious proxy, became a state within a state following its success in Lebanon’s war against US-backed Israel in 2006.
    And now, with the US withdrawing from Yemen another Iranian proxy, the Houthis are on the verge of dominating a country torn by tribal conflicts.

    So the upshot of over 15 years of the war on terror is that the US empire has only managed to further Iranian imperialist ambitions, for Tehran’s hegemony has now spread far beyond Baghdad, Beirut and Damascus into the emergence of a new Persian empire that seems destined to place much of the Middle East under the influence of a fervently anti-Western and anti-American Islamic theocratic Republic.

  5. United Sociopaths of America–seems about right.

  6. The US is effectively an Empire that is a manipulated vassal of the UK, Israel, and Saudi Arabia. Very weird.

    Image the good the US could do for the world if it regained its sovereignty? But it is no long sovereign and no longer a Republic. It can’t go back and keeps digging the hole deeper.

  7. Bernie Sanders was the real source of the Senate resolution, although Republican Senator Lee of iowa did consent to co-sponsor the measure in order to present a bipartisan face for it. (The seven Republican Senators who voted aye in effect confirmed Bernie’s savvy.) Say what you will about Bernie and the rest of the Senate, they did say no to a war that the military-industrial complex favors.

  8. This is largely a show vote and the Senators knew it was effectively meaningless.

    The rules of the US Congress state that actions in one Congress don’t carry over to the next. A Congress is the 2 year period between elections. If a law is completely passed and becomes law, that of course sticks around. But a Senate vote on a resolution does not carry over.

    The USA just had its congressional elections. Thus this is what is known as a ‘lame-duck’ session. Next month, a new Congress will convene and the winners of the recent elections will be sworn in.

    The current US House, with Republican control and some Democrat support has already refused to even consider a vote on this resolution. Thus, this was a meaningless vote by the Senate, as it will not be passed by the Congress as a whole and it will thus disappear when this Congress adjourns. It will have no effect on policy towards Saudi Arabia, the UAE or Yemen. There is of course no guarantee that Senators will vote the same way should a similar resolution come before the next Congress. It would be well within Senatorial ethics and the American version of democracy for Senators to vote completely differently should a more meaningful vote occur next year.

    Welcome to the twilight zone of American politics.

  9. I could rail on for hours, but haven’t the time. So, I’ll just say that I detest what my government does ‘in my name (as if I really mattered to them).

  10. The Clinton – Obama Democrats and MSM shell game, how to hoodwink gullible minorities, feminists and progressives for fun and profit. Sign on to progressive themes that can’t pass, or do so in a manner that makes them merely illusory, keep divisive issues as to which nothing can or will be done alive for maximum polarization, then blame the inept GOP for everything you just cleverly orchestrated, the pebble safely palmed.

    Better an opponent you honestly disagree with than a fake ally secretly working to make sure you fail while draining your resources.

    1. I agree that this apparent denunciation of the Saudi’s and our deadly role in supporting aggression in Yemen by the House was nothing more than a parlor magic trick to fool the “do-gooders” and again denounce Trump. This House bill has no chance of passage and is merely “eye wash” for the naive and gullible populace.
      Another demonstration of the cynicism and cleverness of the Clinton – Obama Democrats in enticing “progressives” to believe their party actually cares about the horror and humanitarian nightmare in Yemen. All the while, this was nothing more than a psych-op to help further the “remove Trump” agenda.

      1. Just you wait and see. When the dems take over congress in January they will put off their witch hunt on Trump until these wars are all resolved because nothing is more important to the peaceful left than ending wars.

  11. Keep them coming Caitlin. You’re the first thing I read each morning. You’ve got a special folder on my desktop.

  12. Wahhabism is Judaism?

    For such is the things unseen, where the small rule the many… Yet, the many have no say!

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