Monday, January 25, 2021

Stop the Lucrative Cruelty in Yemen

There was an online rally with some impressive speeches about the war on Yemen today, what Yanis Varoufakis referred as a form of "lucrative cruelty." Here's the full video, and below are some of the words I found most impactful.

Biden was front and center when the US got involved in 2015 as the US war machine aided a unilateral attack on Yemen led by Saudi Arabia and UAE with American military support. Trump made it all much worse, but Biden is back with promises to stop it. (A good run-down of the beginning is here by Al-Adeimi.) "Biden needs to stop the logistical, intelligence, and military support to Saudis and lift the blockade so food and medical services can enter Yemen" (Ro Khanna). 

A third of bombing missions strike hit non-military targets, and 9.5 million children have no access to water, food, or basic sanitation (Finucane).

Ahmed Al-Babati, a soldier who was arrested for protesting the war, said we "must sacrifice our comfort for others' survival."

Cornel West gave an impassioned speech linking the police murders in the US with Wall Street crime and the Pentagon militarism. "It doesn't matter the color or gender of the President or Vice President. The poor, the workers, the hungry, must be the center of their focus."

Esa Mighty followed that with some spoken word that is worth hearing at 27 minutes in. 

Daniele Obono: "It's complicated, but not inevitable. These are the fruits of political choices. Don't complicate what is simple. 250,000 are dead. 80% are living in poverty. Two-thirds depend on aid."

Shireen Al-Adeimi: "In Canada, we need to stop arms manufacturing in London, Ontario [GM Defense]. In the U.S., Biden must lift the blockades. Every ten minutes a child under five is starved to death."

Jeremy Corbyn ended it: "$90 billion of arms have been sold to Saudi Arabia, and even more to neighbouring countries. We must act to stop the supply. In the U.S. Senate, Sanders helped passed the War Powers Resolution. In Britain, the government refused to act, but a lawsuit suspended sales temporarily. But the War Powers Act is not enough. It means that parliament can decide IF we go to war. Profits are being made from the killing of children. . . . We need a global movement with the confidence of a vision of a world without conflict. The U.S. can afford anything except levels of inequality that exist. . . . No child's life should be ended by bombs raining down on them from worldwide companies."

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