Besides admitting that his Yemen policy has failed, the president has an additional motive for vetoing the WPR: placating Saudi Arabia.

by Charles Pierson, Counter Punch

Hope for peace in Yemen dimmed on October 2 when a truce between a Saudi-led coalition and Yemen’s Houthi rebels expired without being renewed.  The truce had begun in April, was extended in June, and extended again in August.

Yemen war escalates

Since 2015, the US has been Saudi Arabia’s silent partner, providing the Saudi-led military coalition (“SLC”) with intelligence and targeting assistance, and (until November 2018) conducting in-flight refueling of coalition aircraft. Yemenis refer to the “Saudi-American war,” or, simply, the “American war.”

Biden had promised to end US assistance to the coalition, both on the campaign trail and in his first major foreign policy speech as president on February 4, 2021.  Biden has scaled back US assistance, but the US continues to sell massive quantities of arms to the Saudis and Emiratis.

The US also provides spare parts and maintenance for coalition warplanes.  Experts, such as Bruce Riedel of the Brookings Institution, contend that without US maintenance and spare parts, Saudi warplanes would be “grounded.”  Grounding the Royal Saudi Air Force would end the kingdom’s massively destructive bombing campaign.  It might even end the war.

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