FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

The US in Yemen

The world’s bastion of peace is packing up its bombs and tanks in a humiliating retreat from the desert of Yemen. How could this be? After all, the US has been directing events in Yemen, more or less, since WWII, dominated by US dictator Ali Abdullah Saleh. After the collapse of the Arab world’s only communist state, South Yemen, in 1991, it looked like clear sailing. But sadly, fantasy and reality have little in common in the intractable Middle East.

Yemen is most celebrated as the fatherland of jihadist Osama Bin Laden (his father was a Yemeni-born Saudi construction billionaire with close ties to the Saudi royal family). Osama was energized in his tender youth in the 1970s to travel the Middle East exhorting independence fighters to fight the kufar with increasingly alarming tactics—and success. But that is ancient history now. He was gunned down unarmed by US special forces in Pakistan in 2011 and dumped unceremoniously in the ocean, in yet another US insult to the Muslim world.

Hillary got into gear shortly after in 2011, visiting Yemen to explain the anomaly of the Arab Spring as due to a “youth bulge”, not anything to do with assassinating the local folk hero, dropping hundreds of bombs on innocent civilians, etc. To pare down the “bulge” Obama provided a soupcon of US-style democracy, including an end to Saleh’s dreams of lifetime dictatorship, passing his legacy on to the equally corrupt but spineless vice president Abd Rabbuh Mansur al-Hadi.

“We support an inclusive government,” Clinton replied when asked how the Obama administration could support Saleh’s government and human rights at the same time. “We see that Yemen is going through a transition. And you’re right: it could one way or the other. It could go the right way or the wrong way.” (I’m not making this absurd statement up.)

Hillary just made it home in time to read CNN reports of Yemen’s mass uprising, which Obama petulantly hailed not as a yearning for freedom, but as “an obstruction to be neutralized”. Al-Qaeda capitalized on Saleh’s distraction in the cities to expand its ranks and territorial control in Yemen’s southern governorates; Saleh’s US-trained counter-terrorism forces made things worse by targeting revolutionaries and tribesmen eager to rid Yemen of the US, rather than any pesky al-Qaeda terrorists. After all, what use is Yemen if it becomes independent and kicks out the real sponsors of terrorism—Washington and its allies, namely Saudi Arabia and European partners?

Hadi of course approves of US drone strikes in Yemen, as part of the White House and State Department’s “Partnering with the People of Yemen”. Yemen’s revolution is effectively over in the eyes of UN, EU and GCC powers, and they have stopped at nothing to control its current “transition”. There has been mounting violence by rival armed groups in Yemen, including Houthi rebels, al-Qaeda and IS. The UN Security Council is holding an emergency meeting, perhaps hoping for a Pascal resurrection of a peaceful Yemen (long ago crucified by US lust). President Hadi already fled to the southern port city of Aden after the capital was taken over by Houthis last month.

Late on Saturday, US State Department spokesman Jeff Rathke confirmed the start of the US Stalingrad retreat: “Due to the deteriorating security situation in Yemen, the US government has temporarily relocated its remaining personnel out of Yemen,” though it would continue to support Yemen’s “political transition” and monitor terrorist threats emanating from the country, adding in a Hillaryesque nonsequitur: “There is no military solution to Yemen’s current crisis.” On Friday, President Hadi resolutely demanded that the rebels withdraw from Sanaa in his first televised address since fleeing the city.

The Muslim world has had more than its share of US-backed coups—Syria (1949+), Iran (1953), Turkey (1960, 1971, 1980), Iraq (1963), Libya (1969), Pakistan (1977), Yemen (1978). And they all backfired. Yemen’s travails are merely the latest in this sordid litany.

Just as communism arose out of the contradictions of imperialism a century ago, Islamic revolution is the inevitable result of today’s version of imperialism. IS may be harsh and uncompromising, but it should be treated with respect, not vilified. The caliphate project, implementing sharia, the determination to overthrow the Saudi monarchy, the rejection of fiat money—these are legitimate goals and deserve serious analysis. The caliphate project is now on track after almost a century of Muslim humiliation; the corrupt Saudi Arabia is identified as the Muslim world’s ‘enemy at home’. Given the continually exploding financial crises in the West, ISIS says the new gold-backed currency will take the group out of “the oppressors’ money system”, and return control over the money supply from bankers to the state.

They are the bottom line for Muslims.

Eric Walberg is the author of Postmodern Imperialism: Geopolitics and the Great Games.

More articles by:
Weekend Edition
September 21, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Alexandra Isfahani-Hammond
Hurricane Florence and 9.7 Million Pigs
Andrew Levine
Israel’s Anti-Semitism Smear Campaign
Paul Street
Laquan McDonald is Being Tried for His Own Racist Murder
Brad Evans
What Does It Mean to Celebrate International Peace Day?
Nick Pemberton
With or Without Kavanaugh, The United States Is Anti-Choice
Jim Kavanagh
“Taxpayer Money” Threatens Medicare-for-All (And Every Other Social Program)
Jonathan Cook
Palestine: The Testbed for Trump’s Plan to Tear up the Rules-Based International Order
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: the Chickenhawks Have Finally Come Back Home to Roost!
David Rosen
As the Capitalist World Turns: From Empire to Imperialism to Globalization?
Jonah Raskin
Green Capitalism Rears Its Head at Global Climate Action Summit
James Munson
On Climate, the Centrists are the Deplorables
Robert Hunziker
Is Paris 2015 Already Underwater?
Arshad Khan
Will Their Ever be Justice for Rohingya Muslims?
Jill Richardson
Why Women Don’t Report Sexual Assault
Dave Clennon
A Victory for Historical Accuracy and the Peace Movement: Not One Emmy for Ken Burns and “The Vietnam War”
W. T. Whitney
US Harasses Cuba Amid Mysterious Circumstances
Nathan Kalman-Lamb
Things That Make Sports Fans Uncomfortable
George Capaccio
Iran: “Snapping Back” Sanctions and the Threat of War
Kenneth Surin
Brexit is Coming, But Which Will It Be?
Louis Proyect
Moore’s “Fahrenheit 11/9”: Entertaining Film, Crappy Politics
Ramzy Baroud
Why Israel Demolishes: Khan Al-Ahmar as Representation of Greater Genocide
Ben Dangl
The Zapatistas’ Dignified Rage: Revolutionary Theories and Anticapitalist Dreams of Subcommandante Marcos
Ron Jacobs
Faith, Madness, or Death
Bill Glahn
Crime Comes Knocking
Terry Heaton
Pat Robertson’s Hurricane “Miracle”
Dave Lindorff
In Montgomery County PA, It’s Often a Jury of White People
Louis Yako
From Citizens to Customers: the Corporate Customer Service Culture in America 
William Boardman
The Shame of Dianne Feinstein, the Courage of Christine Blasey Ford 
Ernie Niemi
Logging and Climate Change: Oregon is Appalachia and Timber is Our Coal
Jessicah Pierre
Nike Says “Believe in Something,” But Can It Sacrifice Something, Too?
Paul Fitzgerald - Elizabeth Gould
Weaponized Dreams? The Curious Case of Robert Moss
Olivia Alperstein
An Environmental 9/11: the EPA’s Gutting of Methane Regulations
Ted Rall
Why Christine Ford vs. Brett Kavanaugh is a Train Wreck You Can’t Look Away From
Lauren Regan
The Day the Valves Turned: Defending the Pipeline Protesters
Ralph Nader
Questions, Questions Where are the Answers?
Binoy Kampmark
Deplatforming Germaine Greer
Raouf Halaby
It Should Not Be A He Said She Said Verdict
Robert Koehler
The Accusation That Wouldn’t Go Away
Jim Hightower
Amazon is Making Workers Tweet About How Great It is to Work There
Robby Sherwin
Rabbi, Rabbi, Where For Art Thou Rabbi?
Vern Loomis
Has Something Evil This Way Come?
Steve Baggarly
Disarm Trident Walk Ends in Georgia
Graham Peebles
Priorities of the Time: Peace
Michael Doliner
The Department of Demonization
David Yearsley
Bollocks to Brexit: the Plumber Sings
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail