A Divided Yemen

Yemen has been in the news a bit for the last couple of years…..since the days of the bombing of the USS Cole Yemen has been of interest to the US and for the last couple of years it has been in the news because of the air campaign against the country by the Saudis.  This conflict is a typical Middle East conflict….a powerful country with a massive military against a smaller country with little military…..

But first a little background into the country of Yemen…..North Yemen became independent from the Ottoman Empire in 1918. The British, who had set up a protectorate area around the southern port of Aden in the 19th century, withdrew in 1967 from what became South Yemen. Three years later, the southern government adopted a Marxist orientation. The massive exodus of hundreds of thousands of Yemenis from the south to the north contributed to two decades of hostility between the states. The two countries were formally unified as the Republic of Yemen in 1990. A southern secessionist movement and brief civil war in 1994 was quickly subdued. In 2000, Saudi Arabia and Yemen agreed to delineate their border. Fighting in the northwest between the government and the Huthis, a Zaydi Shia Muslim minority, continued intermittently from 2004 to 2010. The southern secessionist movement was revitalized in 2007.

Yemen is moving toward the past where there were two countries within the borders of Yemen…..

US policymakers have long been split over how far to support the Saudi-led campaign against Yemen’s Iranian-backed Houthis.

Now that debate is about to get even more complicated as southern secessionists from the port city of Aden take their grievances against the US-backed government of Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi straight to Washington. The so-called Southern Transitional Council (STC) hired Grassroots Political Consulting earlier this month for $15,000 a month to “solicit support for the STC and the people of South Yemen to regain their sovereignty and independence,” according to newly filed disclosure forms.

A return to the Cold War days in Yemen…..if so what was the point of unification in the first place?

The US has shown little to NO leadership in the region and especially in Yemen….the US basically has allowed the Saudis to create a humanitarian nightmare in Yemen…famine and disease…..

“American leadership” is one of a long list of vague, seemingly benign pseudo-concepts our media throw around to justify increased spending on soft power and military adventurism. It’s a difficult concept to pin down, but it’s almost always presented as something the United States is “failing” to do when it doesn’t “engage” the world with enough war, sanctions or arbitrarily applied human rights scolding.

Lamenting a “lack of American leadership” is, therefore, a time-honored Serious Person cliche for those operating at major US papers, and one Washington Post deputy editorial page editor Jackson Diehl phoned in Sunday with his op-ed “Genocide, Famine and a Democratic Retreat—All After One Year of US Inaction” (1/21/17).


AS much as I would love to blame Trump for the situation in Yemen I cannot for this whole enchilada began with the Obama administration…..but Trump has done NOTHING to change the direction of events in Yemen.

The longer the Trump foreign policy circles the crapper the further into darkness the country of Yemen goes and as usual the people suffer the most for Americaa’s inactivity.


2 thoughts on “A Divided Yemen

  1. This looks like another messed-up legacy from the aftermath of WW1.
    People drawing lines on maps in the past is the cause of so many problems in the world today.
    Best wishes, Pete.

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