Saudi Arabia

NPR: Report UN Famine Warning for Yemen & US Role in the War

The United Nations has warned that Yemen is on the brink of famine. The primary cause of the impending famine is Saudi Arabia's war in Yemen. This war is supported by the United States - not only with U.S. weapons, but with direct U.S. military participation, including refueling of Saudi warplanes that are bombing Yemen. In particular, the U.S. is perceived to support the Saudi blockade of the Yemeni port of Hodeida, which has been the primary entry point for food, medicine, and humanitarian aid to northern Yemen. Stephen O'Brien, the UN's humanitarian aid coordinator and 53 Members of the House of Representatives have called for the port of Hodeida to be re-opened to humanitarian aid.

Urge NPR to fully report the UN's famine warning for Yemen by signing our petition at MoveOn.

No Arms Deal for Saudi Arabia's Mohammed bin Famine

While President Trump has lunch with Saudi prince Mohammed bin Salman, children in Yemen are starving to death. Stephen O'Brien, the United Nations top aid official, has demanded that Yemen's Hodeida port, currently blockaded and attacked by Saudi Arabia, be opened to food imports to avert famine. 53 Members of the House have urged Secretary of State Tillerson to "use all U.S. diplomatic tools to help open the Yemeni port of Hodeida to international aid humanitarian aid organizations to allow them to import food, fuel, and medicine into northern Yemen and save the lives of hundreds of thousands of Yemeni children who face starvation."

The Trump Administration wants to sell Saudi Arabia weapons that were put on hold by President Obama. Senator Rand Paul [R-KY] and Senator Chris Murphy [D-CT] oppose the sale. "I don't know why we would give them precision-guided munitions that allow them to target civilians more efficiently,” Senator Murphy said.

Urge your Representative and Senators to oppose the Saudi arms deal by signing our petition at MoveOn.

Demand UN Security Council Save Yemeni Children From Starvation

"Hundreds of thousands of Yemeni children languishing in refugee camps and remote villages are nearing starvation," the Washington Post reports. Airstrikes near the port of Hodeida - main entry point for food, medicine and humanitarian aid into northern Yemen - have slowed the delivery of supplies. Half a million children are severely acutely malnourished. The UN says Yemen is “on the brink of famine.”

U.S.-backed Saudi airstrikes have destroyed roads and bridges across Hodeida province. Unexploded rockets have landed inside the port, further reducing imports and the number of ships willing to come to Yemen. The Saudis are enforcing a blockade that is restricting food imports, and have told humanitarian agencies to redirect shipments to Aden. That would mean vital food and medicine would need to be trucked from Aden through war zones to reach the millions at risk of starvation in the north.

To save hundreds of thousands of Yemeni children from starvation, someone must stop the U.S.-backed Saudi attacks on Hodeida. Sadly, so far Washington has turned a deaf ear to the cries of Yemeni children. But any member of the UN Security Council can demand a meeting to discuss action to save Yemeni children from starvation. Of the fifteen current members of the Security Council, Bolivia and Russia are the most independent of the U.S.-Saudi alliance that is pushing Yemen into famine. A vigorous Security Council debate would put pressure on the U.S. to stop supporting the Saudi assault on Hodeida.

New York Times: Report the UN's Famine Warning for Yemen

United Nations and other international aid officials have been warning that Yemen is on the brink of famine. "Donald Trump’s Shift On Yemen Risks Plunging The Country Into Famine," the Huffington Post reports, warning that the Trump Administration may be giving Saudi Arabia a green light to attack and close the critical port of Hodeidah, blocking Yemen's food imports. "Yemen war causing world's worst food crisis," Vatican Radio reports. "'Time running out': 1.4 million children could die from famine in Africa & Yemen, says UNICEF," RT reports.

But a search of recent stories on the New York Times' website only turns up wire stories, not a regular New York Times article. [4]

Press NYT editors for prominent coverage of the UN's famine warning for Yemen by signing and sharing our petition at MoveOn.

Don't Help Saudi Arabia Cause Famine in Yemen

President Trump's ramped-up support of Saudi Arabia's war may cause a famine in Yemen, the Huffington Post reports. Aid workers fear Saudi Arabia is planning to attack and close the critical port of Hodeidah on Yemen’s west coast, where most of the country's food has come in. The Obama Administration had opposed such an attack, but the Trump Administration may be encouraging it. Saudi Arabia's war in Yemen has been dependent on the U.S. for military support and diplomatic cover. “If there were a serious disruption to that port, that would, I think, be sufficient to tip the country into famine,” said a former U.S. aid official.

Jamie McGoldrick, the UN's Humanitarian Coordinator in Yemen, notes that Saudi Arabia's diversion of aid ships from Hodeidah is already raising the risk of mass starvation. Using starvation of civilians as a weapon of war is a grave violation of international law.

Press President Trump and Congress to stop Saudi Arabia from causing a famine in Yemen by signing and sharing our petition at MoveOn.

TODAY: Help me press Durbin, Duckworth in Chicago on Saudi-Yemen war powers

President Trump has already "increased logistical support" for the Saudi bombing of Houthis in Yemen. Trump Administration officials are threatening to conduct drone strikes against the Houthis. But Congress never authorized this war. Under the War Powers Resolution, a single Member of Congress could force a debate and vote on what Trump is doing. Unfortunately, we haven't got a single Member of Congress to agree to do this yet.

That’s why I'm going to visit the offices of Senator Durbin and Senator Duckworth in Chicago today (February 7th, 2017). I'm going to deliver the Illinois signatures on this petition, urging Durbin and Duckworth to stand up on Saudi-Yemen war powers before Trump can further escalate the war.

Here's how you can help:

1. Call Durbin's Chicago office at 312-353-4952 and/or Duckworth's Chicago office at (312) 886-3506. When you reach a staffer or leave a message, you can say:

"I urge Senator Durbin and Senator Duckworth to invoke the War Powers Resolution to force Congressional debate on Trump's escalation of the Saudi war in Yemen."

When you've made your call(s), please report that below.

2. Sign and share our petition if you haven't already. If you already signed and shared, please share it again.

Use War Powers to Remove U.S. Forces from Saudi Bombing of Yemen

As Democratic Senator Chris Murphy has noted, U.S. participation in the Saudi bombing of Yemen has never been authorized by Congress.

Urge your reps. to use their war powers to force a vote on removing U.S. forces from the Saudi bombing of Yemen by signing our petition at MoveOn.

Saudi Arabia's conduct is now coming under unprecedented scrutiny. New evidence has recently emerged that the U.S. intelligence community believes that the government of Saudi Arabia has been supporting ISIS. But Congress has never voted on whether the U.S. should be refueling Saudi planes that are bombing Yemen, even though U.S. officials have warned that the U.S. could be implicated in war crimes for supporting the Saudi bombing of Yemen.

Under section 5(c) of the War Powers Resolution, "at any time that United States Armed Forces are engaged in hostilities outside the territory of the United States, its possessions and territories without a declaration of war or specific statutory authorization, such forces shall be removed by the President if the Congress so directs by concurrent resolution."

Urge your reps. to use their war powers to force a vote on removing U.S. forces from the Saudi bombing of Yemen by signing and sharing our petition.

Senate to Vote Wednesday on Saudi 9/11 Bill Veto Override

The Senate is expected to vote Wednesday on overriding the President's veto of the Justice Against Sponsors of Terror Act [JASTA]. This bill would remove Saudi Arabia's immunity from lawsuits brought by 9/11 families over the alleged responsibility of Saudi officials for the 9/11 attacks. Override of the President's veto would be a historic repudiation of the previously unaccountable U.S.-Saudi relationship, which has been a root cause of many terribly destructive wars in the region, including the war in Yemen and the war in Syria.

Call your Senator now at (202) 224-3121. When you reach a staffer or leave a message, you can say something like:

"I urge you to vote to override the veto of the Justice Against Sponsors of Terror Act, so 9/11 families can have their day in court against the Saudi government."

When you've made your call, please report it below.

Then call your other Senator at (202) 224-3121. When you reach a staffer or leave a message, you can say something like:

"I urge you to vote to override the veto of the Justice Against Sponsors of Terror Act, so 9/11 families can have their day in court against the Saudi government."

When you've made your call, please report it below.

And if you haven't signed our petition to Congress yet urging that the veto of JASTA be overridden, you can do that here.

9/11 Families Deserve Their Day in Court Against Saudi Arabia

This week the House and Senate are expected to vote on whether to override the President's veto of the Justice Against Sponsors of Terror Act ["JASTA"]. JASTA would allow 9/11 families to sue Saudi Arabia over allegations Saudi officials were linked to the 9/11 attacks. The bill makes no judgment about Saudi Arabia's responsibility for the attacks. It just removes Saudi Arabia's immunity from lawsuit over support for terrorist attacks on U.S. soil. Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders both support the bill.

Call your Representative now at (202) 224-3121. When you reach a staffer or leave a message, you can say something like:

"I urge you to vote the override the President's veto of the Saudi 9/11 bill so the 9/11 families can have their day in court."

When you've made your call, please report it below.

Under current U.S. law, Americans can sue Iran for terrorism in U.S. courts, but they can't sue Saudi Arabia for terrorism in U.S. courts, because Iran is on the State Department's "state sponsor of terror" list and Saudi Arabia is not. The State Department is allowed to take "broader U.S. foreign policy interests" besides concern about support for terrorism into account in forming its list - like the Saudi government's cozy relationship with the C.I.A.

In January, the New York Times reported that:

27 Senators who voted to stop the US arms sale to Saudi Arabia

The following Senators voted against tabling a motion to stop the sale of $1.15 billion in tanks and other military equipment to Saudi Arabia. Effectively, these Senators were voicing opposition to the sale.

Baldwin
Blumenthal
Booker
Boxer
Cantwell
Durbin
Franken
Gillibrand
Heinrich
Heller
Hirono
Kirk
Klobuchar
Leahy
Lee
Markey
Murphy
Murray
Paul
Reid
Sanders
Schatz
Stabenow
Tester
Udall
Warren
Wyden