Will House Democrats End U.S. Involvement In Yemen War? | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

Will House Democrats End U.S. Involvement In Yemen War?

Given the anger in Washington over the Jamal Khashoggi murder case, there is a real possibility that the Democrat-controlled House will be able to garner the votes to achieve what scores of lawmakers unsuccessfully sought to accomplish in March. The stakes are high regarding weapons sales to Saudi Arabia and the UAE. Any effort to cancel, delay, or freeze arms deals could undermine the White House’s “special relationships” with Crown Princes Mohammed bin Salman and Mohammed bin Zayed, the de facto rulers in Riyadh and Abu Dhabi who are at the helm of Saudi and Emirati foreign policy. At risk are pending Saudi and UAE purchases of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) anti-missile defense system, the F-35 fifth generation fighter jets, and precision guided munitions.

Trump has been keen to support increasingly hawkish Saudi and Emirati conduct in the region aimed at countering Iran’s expanding and consolidating influence. The Yemeni conflict and the country’s exacerbating humanitarian crisis have not only been absolutely devastating for millions of Yemenis, the war has also severely harmed U.S. national security interests and moral standing. Extremist factions such as al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula and the Islamic State have been the only victors in the crisis. The Saudi-led coalition has failed to achieve its objectives in this bloody and expensive quagmire.

If the White House moves forward with lucrative arms deals to Riyadh and Abu Dhabi without the Arab Persian Gulf states first ending their bombing campaigns in Yemen, next year’s debates about the conflict are likely to be heated. Odds are good that the new House of Representatives will highlight the calamity in Yemen to put pressure on the administration to change course. Unquestionably, the outcome of yesterday’s election is unwelcome news in Riyadh and Abu Dhabi.