Yemen and Afghanistan
Out with the government, send in the commercial contractors.
President Biden announced in February that he would end support for Saudi Arabia’s offensive operations in Yemen. No more refueling warplanes, providing logistical support, no more advanced weapons systems for the Saudi war effort. But the warplanes are still delivering their bombs. Through a US government process, the Saudi government pays commercial contractors to keep the jets flying, and the US military still provides “defensive support.” This enables the Saudis to continue bombing and enforcing a blockade on Yemeni ports.
The war was started 6 years ago by Saudi Arabia to restore a ruler friendly to them, when a Houthi movement took over Yemen’s capital. Aided by the US, the war took the lives of more than 230,000 people, caused outbreaks of disease and brought famine to the population. The World Food Program said around 400,000 children could die in Yemen by the end of this year. In April, 80 Democrats sent a letter demanding that Biden do more to force Riyadh to end the blockade that contributes to the famine.
Bring the boots home, send in the drones.
Headlines on newspapers and computer feeds across the country on April 14 proclaimed: “Withdrawal of US Troops from Afghanistan.” President Biden did not say that the United States will stop bombing Afghanistan. And he pledged that “we will keep providing assistance to the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces,” which can only be “war by any other name.”
The Institute for Public Accuracy reported this statement from a former State Dept official: “the US military will still be present in the form of thousands of special operations and CIA personnel in and around Afghanistan, through dozens of squadrons of manned attack aircraft and drones stationed on land bases and on aircraft carriers in the region, and by hundreds of cruise missiles on ships and submarines.”
Despite the headlines and the White House announcements, US taxpayers will be paying for killing in Afghanistan until there is an end to the bombing and “special operations” that have long been carried out in secret.