Yemen in the Crosshairs: Trump's Decision to Visit Saudi Arabia First Speaks Volumes

World Can't Wait | May 8, 2017

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"If you care at all about children starving to death and selling billions of dollars worth of deadly weapons to one of the most brutal and repressive regimes on earth," notes journalist Danielle Ryan, "the only message Trump's visit to Riyadh will send is that barbaric contempt for basic human rights is tolerable so long as you serve Washington's financial and military interests. . . Trump hates radical Islam, except when you can make money from it."

Norwegian Refugee Council head Jan Egeland is on a five-day visit to the target of US-backed military intervention. "I am shocked to my bones by what I have seen and heard here in war- and hunger-stricken Yemen. The world is letting some 7 million men, women and children slowly but surely be engulfed by unprecedented famine. 

"Men with guns and power inside Yemen as well as in regional and international capitals are undermining every effort to avert an entirely preventable famine," Egeland adds, "as well as the collapse of health and education services for millions of children."

The threatened assault on the key port of Hodeidah inflames the humanitarian crisis even further, says U.N. human rights chief Zeid Ra'ad al Hussein:

"The fighting in Hodeida has left thousands of civilians trapped - as was the case in Al Mokha in February - and has already compromised badly-needed deliveries of humanitarian assistance. Two years of wanton violence and bloodshed, thousands of deaths and millions of people desperate for their basic rights to food, water, health and security - enough is enough. I urge all parties to the conflict, and those with influence, to work urgently towards a full ceasefire to bring this disastrous conflict to an end, and to facilitate rather than block the delivery of humanitarian assistance." 

"Time is on no-one's side as regards the crisis in Yemen," posts Kathy Kelly, Voices for Creative Nonviolence. "As nightmare visions of living skeletons with bloated bellies and pleading eyes once more appear on the planet's TV screens, we in the U.S. will have missed a vital chance to avert a world in which untold millions are to be shocked to their bones."