By Sara Sirota, The Intercept

By late 2018, years of Saudi-led airstrikes and blockades on Yemen ports had killed thousands and left millions more at risk of starvation. In response, bipartisan majorities in the House and Senate invoked the 1973 War Powers Resolution to cease American involvement in the war. After President Donald Trump vetoed the reform, House Democrats introduced an amendment to the Fiscal Year 2020 National Defense Authorization Act, or NDAA, to again prohibit U.S. support for the Saudis. Despite passing the House with a bipartisan majority, Senate Republicans killed the amendment in final negotiations over the bill. The cards weren’t on the table to end American complicity in what the United Nations has deemed the worst humanitarian crisis in the world.

A small boy surveys wreckage from a bombing
Photo by Felton Davis

For the first time since Saudi Arabia’s offensive in Yemen began six years ago, Democrats hold both chambers of Congress and the White House, putting them in the strongest position to finally enact change. Rep. Ro Khanna, D-Calif., has revitalized the FY-20 NDAA provision and introduced it into this year’s defense bill. In addition to outlawing intelligence sharing with the Saudis, Khanna’s amendment would prohibit U.S. logistical support and the transfer of spare parts to Saudi warplanes, effectively grounding them. The House of Representatives is set to vote on the measure today.

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