Senate's Yemen War Vote 'Slap in the Face to Trump's Policies'

Senate's Yemen War Vote 'Slap in the Face to Trump's Policies'

Before the ANC meeting, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Defense Secretary James Mattis will brief the Senate Wednesday on Saudi Arabia and Yemen amid increasingly vocal calls in Congress for the penalize Saudi Arabia for Khashoggi's killing and to halt its support for the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen.

An Argentinian prosecutor has taken up the case against Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman for alleged crimes against humanity, including the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Backed by U.S. military hardware and logistics, the Saudi-led campaign in Yemen has resulted in a "tremendous starvation, the worst outbreak of cholera in modern history, and none of that seemed to move the elected officials in this country enough to do anything about it", Medea Benjamin, cofounder of the anti-war group Code Pink, told RT. "It tells me volumes about what really is going on here".

In this May 20, 2017, file photo, US President Donald Trump shakes hands with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Chris Coons, a Delaware Democrat and a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, says he believes there is potential for a Central Intelligence Agency briefing next week for all Senators on Khashoggi.

"There is no smoking gun", Mattis told Pentagon reporters, stressing he still believes those responsible should be punished.

Though Pompeo and Mattis both called for an immediate Yemen cease-fire by all parties to the conflict on October 30, and the State Department reiterated that call last week, they argued in remarks prepared for today's briefing that the United States should in essence help Saudi Arabia keep the military pressure on Yemen's Houthi rebels ahead of efforts to bring the parties to the table at UN talks next month.

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"More broadly, degrading ties with Saudi Arabia would be a grave mistake for USA national security, and that of our allies", Pompeo said in his prepared remarks to the Senate.

"Over the last three years we've seen the Senate get closer and closer [in pushing for a halt] to the sale of bombs, tanks etc to Saudi Arabia, but the Saudis have just continued in Yemen".

The Senate on Wednesday rebuked the Trump administration by agreeing to discharge the Yemen resolution from the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and send it to the Senate floor, setting up high-stakes votes next week.

"We are the one with leverage, but the administration has given it all away", Riedel added.

One member of the group - the United States - has offered unwavering support of the prince. "I think 80 percent of the people left the hearing this morning not feeling like an appropriate response has been forthcoming", Corker said.

"The Trump administration's effort to rebuild the U.S. -Saudi Arabia partnership isn't popular in the salons of Washington, where politicians of both parties have long used the kingdom's human-rights record to call for the alliance's downgrading", Pompeo wrote. "The notion that anyone told Director Haspel not to attend today's briefing is false", according to the statement from CIA Press Secretary Timothy Barrett.

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"What senators would want to know is things like, what is the extent of our military support, what has it actually accomplished on the ground".

"I commend the Senate for advancing a bipartisan resolution to end US support for the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen".

The US Secretary of State said Riyadh is helping manage the flood of refugees fleeing Syria's civil war by working with host countries and cooperating closely with Egypt.

"So no, I think Mohammad bin Salman needs to be shunned and, you know, be an global pariah at this point", he continued. Her failure to testify was the result of an order from the White House, given that she would be compelled to either lie under oath or contradict the narrative advanced by Pompeo and Mattis.

"The military in particular has a long history of getting trapped into continuing policy decisions or operations".

"It is quite remarkable that in these last three years, where the USA has been so involved in this devastating war in Yemen, there has been so little coverage", Codepink co-founder Medea Benjamin told Radio Sputnik's Fault Lines on August 21 after news of the Yemeni school bus hit by Saudi planes firing US-made weapons broke.

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