Date: Monday, 21 May 2018
Pompeo’s Iran speech was awful in many ways, including its completely one-sided and dishonest portrayal of the war on Yemen:
In Yemen, Iran’s support for the Houthi militia fuels a conflict that continues to starve the Yemeni people and hold them under the threat of terror [bold mine-DL].
The IRGC has also given Houthi missiles to attack civilian targets in Saudi Arabia and the Emirates and to threaten international shipping in the Red Sea.
What Pompeo doesn’t mention here is that the conflict was escalated by the Saudi coalition with U.S. backing that continues to this day. The people of Yemen are being starved in large part because of the coalition blockade that the U.S. supports. Yemeni civilians are most often terrorized by indiscriminate coalition bombings of their cities and towns. All indiscriminate attacks should be condemned, but the reason why there are missiles being fired at Saudi Arabia and the UAE is their relentless and bloody bombardment of Yemen that has caused thousands of civilian casualties, devastated the country’s infrastructure, and helped to cripple its health care system. If there had been no Saudi-led intervention, these attacks would not be happening, and if the intervention ended the attacks would likely come to an end as well. The administration has no demands for the governments that are actually destroying Yemen, but rather looks for excuses to continue helping them with their indiscriminate and reckless bombing.
If all Iranian support stopped tomorrow, the war wouldn’t end because Iran’s involvement has always been minimal. Meanwhile, the U.S. has been unstinting in providing the intervening coalition governments with weapons, fuel, and intelligence to wage their atrocious war. Of course, the Trump administration doesn’t want to cut off support to the coalition, and they certainly don’t care about alleviating the world’s worst humanitarian crisis. They are content to aid and abet the Saudi coalition in their crimes while using limited Iranian involvement to distract attention from our own much more consequential and destructive role.