Jemenkrieg-Mosaik 694b- Yemen War Mosaic 694b

Yemen Press Reader 694b: 18. November 2020: Fortsetzung von Jemenkrieg-Mosaik 694, cp8 - cp19 / November 18, 2020: Sequel to Yemen War Mosaic 694, cp8 - cp19
Bei diesem Beitrag handelt es sich um ein Blog aus der Freitag-Community

Eingebetteter Medieninhalt

Eingebetteter Medieninhalt

Dies ist die Fortsetzung von Jemenkrieg-Mosaik 694, Teil 1 / This is the sequel of Yemen War Mosaic 694, part 1:

Schwerpunkte / Key aspects

Kursiv: Siehe Teil 1 / In Italics: Look in part 1

Klassifizierung / Classification

Für wen das Thema ganz neu ist / Who is new to the subject

cp1 Am wichtigsten / Most important

cp1a Am wichtigsten: Coronavirus und Seuchen / Most important: Coronavirus and epidemics

cp1b Am wichtigsten: Großer Gefangenenaustausch / Most important: Great prisoner swap

cp2 Allgemein / General

cp2a Allgemein: Saudische Blockade / General: Saudi blockade

cp3 Humanitäre Lage / Humanitarian situation

cp4 Flüchtlinge / Refugees

cp5 Nordjemen und Huthis / Northern Yemen and Houthis

cp6 Separatisten und Hadi-Regierung im Südjemen / Separatists and Hadi government in Southern Yemen

cp7 UNO und Friedensgespräche / UN and peace talks

cp8 Saudi-Arabien / Saudi Arabia

cp9 USA

cp9a USA-Iran Krise: Spannungen am Golf / US-Iran crisis: Tensions at the Gulf

cp10 Großbritannien / Great Britain

cp11 Deutschland / Germany

cp12 Andere Länder / Other countries

cp12b Sudan

cp13a Waffenhandel / Arms trade

cp13b Söldner / Mercenaries

cp13c Wirtschaft / Economy

cp14 Terrorismus / Terrorism

cp15 Propaganda

cp16 Saudische Luftangriffe / Saudi air raids

cp17 Kriegsereignisse / Theater of War

cp18 Kampf um Hodeidah / Hodeidah battle

cp19 Sonstiges / Other

Klassifizierung / Classification




(Kein Stern / No star)

? = Keine Einschatzung / No rating

A = Aktuell / Current news

B = Hintergrund / Background

C = Chronik / Chronicle

D = Details

E = Wirtschaft / Economy

H = Humanitäre Fragen / Humanitarian questions

K = Krieg / War

P = Politik / Politics

pH = Pro-Houthi

pS = Pro-Saudi

T = Terrorismus / Terrorism

cp8 Saudi-Arabien / Saudi Arabia

(A P)

Iraq-Saudi Arabia border crossing opens for trade, first time since 1990

and also

(A P)

Opponents Call for Overthrow of Saudi Monarchy, Empowering People

Saudi Arabia: A group of activists and opponents of the Saudi regime launched a petition through the "Avaaz" website for community campaigns, calling for the necessity to overthrow the regime in Saudi Arabia.

(A P)

Saudi Arabia concerned over Israeli moves in East Jerusalem: statement

Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Tuesday voiced “deep concern” over the Israeli authorities’ decision to invite contractor bids to build 1,257 new settlements near East Jerusalem and said it contravened international resolutions.

“The ministry affirms the Kingdom’s condemnation and rejection of the move, which contravenes international resolutions,” it said in a statement.

(* B P)

Secret Emirati assessment of bin Salman: reckless, loser, authoritarian!

Al-Akhbar obtained leaked Emirati documents, including one containing a confidential assessment of the Saudi Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman, on the occasion of the two-year anniversary of his accession to the mandate of the Covenant (2017-2019). The document, which begins with the phrase “strictly confidential” and then on the date of issuance on August 9, 2019, includes “a report on the harvest of two years from the reign of Prince Muhammad bin Salman in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia”, which was prepared by a unit in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs named “The Gulf Studies Unit”.

The report combines analysis and monitoring of news, both public and private.The news about the size of the large and in-depth surveillance of the allied Saudi leadership and its shifts, and the ability of the Emirati agencies to collect information from within the Kingdom about bin Salman and the surrounding circle and the unannounced policies, through a number of ways, including the harnessing of Saudi sources. The report shows that the Emirati diplomacy and the Emirates agencies in general are operating at what amounts to spying on bin Salman, and sometimes seem disturbed by his reckless and weak performance of Saudi foreign policy. From the secrets of the relationship with Israel, the Evangelical Lobby in America and President Donald Trump and the impact of Jamal Khashoggi's killing, to the position on the Brotherhood and Prince Al-Walid bin Talal ... the report expands on the facts and conclusions, the most important of which are:"Features of Ibn Salman's political doctrine" and the crisis of the legitimacy of government, estimating defeat in Yemen and the impossibility of occupying Sanaa, setback in the boycott of Qatar, division and polarization in Saudi society and the wings of the royal family, 8 internal changes and 6 in the weakening foreign policy ... all do not preclude approval With relative strength to put Bin Salman internally.

Full text: ....

(A E P)

Saudi Aramco to issue bonds as it seeks cash amid oil slump

Saudi Arabia’s oil giant Aramco announced Monday it will issue international bonds as it seeks a cash infusion to help pay for billions of dollars in dividends the company promised shareholders before the global coronavirus pandemic sent oil prices plummeting.

In a statement posted on the Saudi Tadawul stock exchange, the company said it plans to issue U.S.-dollar denominated bonds but did not specify the size of the issuance. The bonds, which range from three to 50 years, are targeted to institutional investors with a minimum subscription of $200,000. The amount issued and the returns are subject to market conditions, the company said.

(* B E P)

Bin Salman can't Cover His Employees Salaries, Continues Spending on Aggression against Yemen

Mohammed bin Salman admitted an economic disaster as a result of the huge losses that hit the Saudi economy, in a clear indication of the failure of his policies. He declared that "the budget is not sufficient to cover even employees' salaries."

Prince Mohammed bin Salman said in this regard, on Thursday: “Looking at what was announced last year for the 2020 budget projections, we were talking about expected state revenues previously estimated at 833 billion riyals, of which 513 billion riyals are oil revenues, and after the collapse of oil prices this year, they decreased. Oil revenues actually amount to approximately 410 billion riyals. “

Bin Salman said: “If we did not raise non-oil revenues to about 360 billion riyals this year, and if we remained at 2015 levels estimated at nearly 100 billion riyals, we would have to reduce the salaries of workers in the public sector by more than 30%, and cancel the allowances and bonuses completely. We need a complete cessation of capital spending, and the inability to properly operate and maintain state assets, and we stopped even supporting the financing expenditures. "
He continued: “These revenues alone are insufficient to cover even the salaries estimated at 504 billion riyals in this year’s budget, not to mention the difficulty of financing other items, which include capital spending of 173 billion riyals, social benefits of 69 billion riyals, and operation and maintenance estimated at 140 billion riyals. This means an economic recession, and the loss of millions of jobs. ”

and also

My remark: Estimated cost of the Yemen War: Saudi riyals 250 billion a year.

cp9 USA

Siehe / Look at cp9a

(* B P)

So werden Joe Bidens Mitarbeiter von der Rüstungsindustrie gesteuert

Im Juli 2019 bekräftigte Joe Biden – damals inmitten des Wahlkampfes um die US-Präsidentschaft – in einer programmatischen Rede zur Außenpolitik, es sei “an der Zeit, die ewigen Kriege zu beenden, die uns unermessliche Mengen an Blut und Geld abverlangt haben”. Nun aber rekrutiert der designierte Präsident für sein Kabinett Spitzenpersonal mit engen Verbindungen zur Rüstungsindustrie. Darauf weisen zunehmend alternative Medien in den USA hin, während der Mainstream über den Anti-Trump Joe Biden und seine Vizepräsidentin Kamala Harris, die erste Afroamerikanerin und Frau auf dem Posten, jubeln.
Die Realität sieht freilich anders aus: Biden war als Vizepräsident unter Barack Obama nicht nur für die Kriege im Jemen, in Libyen, Afghanistan und anderen Ländern mitverantwortlich. Er holt nun Lobbyisten eben jener Industrie ins sein Regierungsboot, die unmittelbar von diesen “ewigen Kriegen” profitiert.
Das zeigte sich auch am Dienstag vergangener Woche, als Biden seine sogenannten Überprüfungsteams für die US-Behörden und Ministerien vorstellte. Diese Teams seien “dafür verantwortlich, die Geschäfte jeder Behörde zu erfassen, eine reibungslose Übergabe zu organisieren und sich zu gewährleisten, dass der designierte Präsident Biden und die designierte Vizepräsidentin Harris sowie ihr Kabinett vom ersten Tag an einsatzbereit sind”.
Und nun wird es spannend: Von den 23 Personen des Überprüfungsteams für das US-Verteidigungsministerium, führen acht – also etwas mehr als ein Drittel – als ihre letzten Arbeitgeber Organisationen, Think Tanks oder Unternehmen an, die entweder direkt Geld von der Rüstungsindustrie erhalten haben oder dieser Branche unmittelbar zuzurechnen sind, wie Sarah Lazare vom US-Onlineportal In These Times schreibt. Tatsächlich mag die Zahl der freiwilligen oder bezahlten Mitarbeiter der Übergangsteams von Biden und Harris höher sein. Es hat schlicht noch niemand die Hintergründe aller Mitarbeiter der “Transition Teams” systematisch untersucht.

(* B P)


Biden has taken a tough stance against longtime U.S. allies Saudi Arabia and the UAE. Progressives are keen to hold him to his promises.

THE DEFENSE INDUSTRY celebrated Joe Biden’s victory in the presidential election, with contractors saying they expected their companies to continue flourishing under his administration as they have under Donald Trump. But while Biden is no peacenik — waging wars has long been an area of bipartisan consensus in Washington — he has already signaled that he’ll take a radically different approach from Trump — particularly when it comes to making overseas arms sales.

Biden, meanwhile, ran on ending U.S. support for the Saudi-led war in Yemen.

Progressive activists and lawmakers have welcomed Biden’s positioning thus far and are hoping that foreign policy is an area they may have influence with in the incoming administration.

In July, more than 30 progressive groups sent a letter to Biden urging him to select foreign policy personnel in a manner that would “challenge the institutions and groupthink that have led to a disastrous, overly-militarized, unilateral approach to foreign affairs” of past administrations.

Michèle Flournoy, Obama’s undersecretary for defense policy and a top contender for defense secretary in the Biden administration, signaled opposition to a ban on arms sales to Saudi Arabia during talks on Yemen during a biannual meeting last January for the liberal think tank Foreign Policy for America, The American Prospect reported. She suggested instead a policy of conditional use, which the defense industry wouldn’t lobby against, according to TAP. But as Politico reported last week, Flournoy convened a call with top progressive foreign policy groups several days before the election to assuage their concerns about her position on arms sales to Saudi Arabia, saying that she opposed the sale of offensive weapons that could be used in Yemen. The Biden campaign declined to comment for this story, but pointed to Biden’s past comments on Saudi Arabia and Blinken’s comments on the UAE deal.

Alex McCoy, political director at the veterans group Common Defense, said Biden’s transition team has reached out to his group and a number of other progressive foreign policy organizations and engaged their critiques in good faith — even though there’s not yet much progressive representation on transition teams for national security agencies. Common Defense’s signature issue is a pledge to “end forever wars,” which Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris did not officially sign on to, though similar language appears in Biden’s platform.

But when it comes to arms sales, McCoy said he expects it will be an area of agreement with the new administration. It helps that the middle of the party is broadly in agreement that the U.S. shouldn’t sell arms to authoritarian countries, McCoy explained. “I think this is a clear area where public opinion has become more evident to policymakers. And so I am seeing commensurate movement by those policymakers.”

THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY has made it a priority to end U.S. involvement in the Saudi-led war in Yemen, which has devastated the country and pushed it to the edge of famine. The Democratic National Committee included it in its platform, and Biden has called to end U.S. support for the Saudi coalition in Yemen. Biden came out in opposition to U.S. support for the war in Yemen last May, shortly after Trump had vetoed the War Powers Resolution. In a Q&A with the Council on Foreign Relations last August, Biden criticized Trump for giving Saudi Arabia a “dangerous blank check” to extend the war in Yemen.

Progressives intend to hold Biden to that promise.

“Progressives are really interested in encouraging the Biden administration to follow through very quickly on the commitment to end the Yemen war, for starters,” said Matt Duss, foreign policy adviser to Sanders. “It’s not just a progressive priority, it’s a bipartisan issue at this point. You have a number of conservative groups that were part of the coalition, and this could be a good early bipartisan win.”

Speaking to The Intercept, Khanna expressed confidence that Congress would pass another War Powers Resolution ending involvement in Yemen and “that Biden would sign that in the first month or two of his presidency.” by Akela Lacy =

(* B P)

Biden Must End the War He Helped Start

Yemenis call on the president-elect to stop the onslaught.

Biden’s election is a paradox for Yemenis: As Obama’s vice president, Biden is complicit in the havoc. Yet, after years of organizing by anti-war groups and individuals, Biden said on the campaign trail he is against continuing U.S. support for the war. Because their lives are so tremendously impacted by the U.S. presient, Yemenis deserve a voice in the political discourse about the incoming administraion. In These Times asked three Yemenis what they think a Biden presidency could mean.

While the onslaught in Yemen is one of many horrors inflicted on people due to U.S. intervention, and Biden’s history of supporting interventions (such as those in Afghanistan and Iraq) is deeply worrying, the conflict in Yemen is one that Biden can — and should — end as soon as he takes office. The suffering of the people of Yemen must be at the forefront of the Biden-Harris administration.

(A P)

Mohammad Ali Al-Houthi @Moh_Alhouthi “Member of the Supreme Political Council in #Yemen” talked before about terrorism and preempts the American classification (text in image)

(B P)

To Biden Which Is Worse Killing Khashoggi or Starving 20 Million Yemenis?

Observers of the debates that took place between members of the Democratic Party to choose the party’s candidate for the presidential elections, as well as the debates between Democratic Party candidate John Biden and US former President Donald Trump, is aware of remarkable interest from everyone, except Trump, for the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Biden has threatened to make Mohammed bin Salman paying a heavy price for that crime.

No one underestimates the ugliness of Khashoggi's murder, and Biden has the right to be angry at bin Salman, but the ugliness of this crime, is not compared to the ugliness of the murder, displacement, starvation and besieging of over twenty million people for more than six years.

It is difficult to justify Biden’s anger at bin Salman for killing Khashoggi as a humanitarian response. If that were the case, Biden would have exploded with anger and humanity as he heard the head of the World Food Program, David Beasley, saying: If we choose to look away, there’s no doubt in my mind Yemen will be plunged into a devastating famine within a few short months.

(* B P)

Cautiously Optimistic: The Biden Administration’s Options in Yemen

The Biden administration’s options on Yemen are limited and come at high political risk at home and in the region.

The current administration’s policy in the Middle East has exonerated Arab regimes both at home and in the region. As reality sinks in on a Biden presidency, concern grows among both President Donald Trump’s supporters and American progressives over the potential for a Biden pivot toward more intrusive Obama-era policies and limited access to weapons purchases. Biden would shift from the Trump administration’s policy to a reciprocal relationship maintained with Gulf monarchies based on access to weapons in exchange for mutually beneficial public gestures of cooperation while balancing tensions within the Gulf Cooperation Council. Observes highlight the pressure from some in Biden’s own camp demanding significant departure from Trump’s approach to relationships with the Arab regimes, in particular.

Critics of the current administration underline the manner in which Trump’s hands-off approach and business interests served to prolong the war in Yemen and turned a blind eye to possible international humanitarian law violations.

While Biden’s potentially unique approach — a more pragmatic agenda than that employed during President Barack Obama’s second term — will rattle relations with the Gulf monarchies, his pivot could lead to substantial progress on Yemen’s peace process. There are three main reasons a Biden presidency encourages such positive expectations.

One, progressive members of Congress such as senators Bernie Sanders and Chris Murphy, Representative Ro Khanna and even the Republican Senator Mike Lee are expected to pressure the Biden administration on weapons sales and on criticism of Saudi Arabia. This group will undoubtedly be joined by the so-called Squad — Democratic House members Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilham Omar, Ayanna Pressley and Rashida Tlaib — all staunch critics of Gulf regimes.

Second, Biden will most likely prioritize a return to talks with Iran to rescue the nuclear deal abandoned by President Trump. Saudi Arabia and Israel will again aim to influence the Biden administration to limit concessions made to Tehran. Third, a Biden administration would prioritize reengagement with the European Union and the NATO alliance

Relations with Saudi Arabia and the UAE, embroiled in the conflict with Qatar and the war in Yemen, will definitely face mounting challenges. Biden is not just seen as a repudiation of the Trump approach to the region, but also as an extension of the Obama legacy.

It is important to keep in mind that the Powers Act is among the issues carrying over from the Trump era. The most recent fight in Congress aimed at limiting Trump’s ability to go to war with Iran, but we must recall that Senator Sanders was among a number of members of Congress who criticized President Obama and Vice President Biden for supporting Saudi Arabia and the UAE at the start of the Yemen conflict in March 2015. President Biden would have two options in the emerging political environment: either negotiate a deal with progressives in the Democratic Party, pledging to not go soft on Saudi Arabia and halt weapons sales or face an embarrassing scenario where members of his own party, joined by Republicans looking to obstruct his administration as much as possible, move to limit his powers and publicly undermine his foreign policy options.

As opposed to Trump’s relationship with Saudi Arabia and the UAE, which emboldened their roles in Libya and Yemen, a Biden presidency under pressure from the Democratic left would undercut leverage of Gulf monarchies vis-à-vis actors on the ground in Yemen, for example.

It would be difficult to convince Iran to abandon Sanaa as part of the process to reengage with the nuclear deal, but it is not impossible. In partnership with European allies who hold deep economic interests in advancing relations with Iran, the Biden administration could ideally negotiate an Iranian exit from Sanaa, knowing the regime will maintain a low-level presence

Under such conditions, a Biden administration could see an opportunity to reintroduce a plan drafted by former Secretary of State John Kerry in 2016 that could marginalize the UN in the process. Griffiths is close to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, and both would fight to maintain the UN as the host of any peace talks, but it is unlikely the US would expend much political capital to hand over the process to the UN. It is difficult to predict if the UN can maintain its high-profile role in Yemen, or if it is time to introduce a new neutral broker who can better balance relations between actors to restart comprehensive dialogue toward a peace agreement – by Fernando Carvajal

(* B P)

Will Joe Biden End the Brutal War in Yemen?

Donald Trump’s personal and professional enthrallment to the Saudi monarchy has also motivated him to indulge Saudi Arabia’s cruel excesses to an even greater degree than past US presidents. US support has been and still is critical to maintaining the Saudi campaign; ending that support would almost certainly force the Saudis to pare back drastically and put more effort into finding a diplomatic way out of the war.

On the campaign trail, candidate Biden took an unambiguous, even shocking, position on the US-Saudi relationship, threatening to cut off US weapon sales to the Saudis — and in one Democratic primary debate promising to “make them … the pariah that they are.” The Biden campaign on more than one occasion claimed that the candidate was opposed to continued US involvement in Yemen.

In general, the tenor of discourse around the Yemen war within the Democratic Party has shifted, with several former Obama administration officials now arguing — albeit too little and too late — that the United States should exit the conflict. Even Congress has made its bipartisan opposition to the war clear, passing a War Powers resolution last year that would have ended US involvement in Yemen had Trump not vetoed it.

We know that Joe Biden says he opposes the war in Yemen and that he will soon, barring some unforeseen development, soon have the power to end it. Will he?

Campaign rhetoric notwithstanding, there is nothing in Biden’s lengthy record of public service, as a leading Democratic voice on foreign policy in the US Senate and later as vice president, to suggest he will make a fundamental change in the US-Saudi relationship. Certainly the Saudis don’t appear to believe he will.

But ending US involvement in Yemen is a less momentous step. If Congress takes up and passes another War Powers resolution, ending this war that’s immiserated millions of Yemenis could require nothing more than Biden’s signature. If it doesn’t, Biden can essentially end US involvement by executive action.

And yet here too, Biden’s record and the nature of the administration he’s likely to assemble must give us pause. No matter what Biden does or does not do with respect to Yemen, the responsibility will be his alone. In contrast with Obama’s abandoned plan to close the US prison camp at Guantanamo, Biden won’t be able to blame Congress for his own failure to act.

The mindset of President-elect Biden is not the only factor to consider, of course. It’s likely he’ll face strong pressure from the Saudi and Emirati governments, the Israeli government, and interest groups in Washington to maintain or even build upon the Trump administration’s “maximum pressure” campaign targeting Iran.

A new presidency offers the chance to wipe the slate clean and reconfigure US foreign policy under new management. It can often take months, or even longer, for a president’s foreign policy approach to coalesce fully. But in this case, Joe Biden and his incoming administration face an immediate test of character and intent.

We know what the president-elect has said about ending the war in Yemen. The only questions that remain are whether he will do it and whether it will be an immediate priority for him. The answers to those questions will tell us much about the kind of foreign policy Biden intends to practice. =

My comment: It’s obvious that this article stays within the close framework / Overton Window ( of US world-rule / global dominance as a god-given fact.

(* B K P)

Zeitschrift: Trump-Administration will Huthi-Rebellen als Terroristen einstufen

Die Administration des scheidenden US-Präsidenten Donald Trump will nach Informationen des Magazins „Foreign Policy“ die vom Iran unterstützten Huthi-Rebellen im Jemen als Terrororganisation einstufen.

Dieser Schritt könnte die internationalen Bemühungen um einen Frieden zwischen der schiitischen Bewegung und der durch Saudi-Arabien unterstützten Regierung des Jemens scheitern lassen, so das Magazin unter Berufung auf mehrere namentlich nicht genannte diplomatische Quellen.

Die Vereinten Nationen und internationale Hilfsagenturen hätten zwar versucht, die amerikanische Administration vor dieser Entscheidung abzuhalten, doch die Einstufung der Huthi-Rebellen als Terrororganisation scheine unumgänglich. Denn sie wäre für US-Außenminister Mike Pompeo, der in dieser Woche Israel, Saudi-Arabien und die Vereinigten Arabischen Emirate besuche, ein Erfolg seiner Anti-Iran-Strategie.

Saudi-Arabien, das seit mehr als fünf Jahren gegen die Huthi-Rebellen kämpft, habe diese bereits als Terroristen eingestuft und Washington aufgefordert, dasselbe zu tun. Die US-Administration habe schon darüber nachgedacht, nun wolle Pompeo die Entscheidung beschleunigen, zitiert das Blatt einen Diplomaten. Es sei „Teil der Politik der verbrannten Erde“, die von der scheidenden Administration betrieben werde.

Nach Informationen des Magazins hatten sowohl der UN-Sondergesandte für den Jemen, Martin Griffiths, als auch Deutschland und Schweden die USA unter Druck gesetzt, um eine Einstufung der Huthi als Terrororganisation zu verhindern. Auch UN-Generalsekretär António Guterres forderte die US-Botschafterin Kelly Craft auf, die Pläne zu überdenken. Doch diese Anstrengungen scheinen keine Wirkung gezeigt zu haben.

(* B K P)

Trump Administration Plans to Designate Yemen’s Houthis as Terrorists

The move, opposed by the humanitarian community, is part of the administration’s pressure campaign on Iran—and could hamstring Biden.

The Trump administration is preparing to designate Yemen’s Iran-backed Houthi insurgents a terrorist organization before leaving office in January, fueling fears the move will disrupt international aid efforts and upend United Nations-brokered peace efforts between the Shiite movement and the Saudi-backed Yemeni government, according to several diplomatic sources.

The U.N. and international relief agencies have tried to dissuade the Trump administration from designating the Houthis a foreign terrorist organization, but the apparently imminent decision would give U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo another victory in his anti-Iran strategy as he visits Israel, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates this week. Riyadh, which has been at war with the Houthis for over five years, has already designated the Houthis a terrorist organization and has been urging Washington to do the same.

In recent weeks, the U.N. special envoy for Yemen, Martin Griffiths, has been pressing the United States to back down and appealing to U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres to intervene with Pompeo, according to diplomatic sources. Last month, Guterres urged Kelly Craft, the U.S. ambassador to the U.N., to reconsider plans to list the Houthis as a terrorist organization. Germany and Sweden have also pressed the United States to back down. But the effort has apparently foundered, and the U.N. has begun preparing the groundwork for a U.S. decision to list the Houthis.

The U.S. Department of Defense and career experts in the State Department are said to be against the move. A coalition of international charities, meanwhile, are preparing a joint statement anticipating the designation, comparing the potential impacts to the famine in Somalia after the U.S. designated al-Shabab as a terrorist group in 2008.

“It is a mistake. This is an inflammatory move from Secretary of State Pompeo and the Trump administration to take,” said Gregory Johnsen, a nonresident fellow at the Brookings Institution. “It would basically box in the new president when he wants to take a new approach to the war in Yemen, and cut back on the Saudi war.”

Diplomats opposing the move have also tried to sway Republican Sen. Lindsey

Democrats in Congress who have long been calling for the Trump administration to hold Saudi Arabia accountable for its role in the war are worried that the label could undermine fragile peace talks in the war-torn nation.

Sen. Chris Murphy, a Democratic member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said any such designation would be a “clear attempt by the Trump administration to hamstring future peace negotiations.”

“The Houthis and their financial supporters are already subject to U.S. sanctions, so the practical impact of the designation would be exclusively to make it more difficult to negotiate with Houthi leaders and to deliver aid to Houthi-controlled areas, where the majority of Yemenis still live,” Murphy said.


(* B K P)

Ending the Yemen war is both a strategic and humanitarian imperative

Saudi Arabia ostensibly started the war in Yemen to prevent Iran from acquiring a foothold on the Arabian Peninsula overlooking the strategic Bab al Mandab straits. Almost six years later, the war has in fact given Iran just that — plus created the worst humanitarian catastrophe in the world. The Biden-Harris administration should make ending the war an urgent priority for both strategic and humanitarian reasons.

Now the crown prince is pressing the Trump administration to designate the Houthis as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO). The State Department is responsible for the designation of FTOs, so the prince is pushing Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who will visit Riyadh later this month. The Houthis are a violent and dangerous organization with very extremist propaganda, but they have not attacked Americans or Israelis despite their rhetoric.

An FTO designation is a political act. The Trump administration could have made the technical decision to designate the Houthis any time in the last four years. Any organization that targets civilian facilities is potentially an FTO (which could include the Saudi Air Force). The choice to do so now is about reining in the next administration, especially as removing the designation is a very difficult political and bureaucratic process. Branding the Houthis as terrorists would be an attempt to block the Biden administration and the world from speaking with them. The reality is that the Houthis control most of northern Yemen, it is better to deal directly with them than to live in denial. Having more outside contact with the rebels will help alternative voices influence them.

The Saudis are desperate for the new administration to block arms deliveries to them and hold the crown prince responsible for the war, as well as the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Even if the new administration doesn’t hold MBS to account, it’s likely there will be bipartisan congressional support for doing so.

If the Houthis are designated an FTO, it will also hamper the efforts of humanitarian relief organizations to get food and medicine to Yemeni civilians living in the territory that the rebels control.

The Houthis are hard to work with, according to humanitarian leaders, but designating them an FTO will make an already difficult situation worse. Given that the Houthis are already isolated, the FTO designation would reap little practical benefit.

The United States has backed the Saudi war from its start, with arms deliveries and diplomatic support. It is long past time for a fundamental change. The war benefits Iran and Hezbollah. It gives Iran a stronghold in a strategically important global crossroads. The tragedy of starving children is widely blamed on the Saudis and their enablers. The incoming administration, which purports to stand for human rights, needs to make ending the war a priority. – by John R. Allen and Bruce Riedel

(* B P)

Meet the Filthy Rich War Hawks That Make up Biden’s New Foreign Policy Team

“I expect the prevailing direction of U.S. foreign policy over these last decades to continue: more lawless bombing and killing multiple countries under the cover of “limited engagement,” – Biden Biographer Branko Marcetic

Biden is no stranger to the rich and powerful. He kicked off his presidential campaign last year with a dinner for ultra-rich patrons at a Manhattan hotel, insisting that “nothing would fundamentally change” if he were elected, reassuring them that he would never demonize the rich and that they were not at fault for growing inequality. “I need you very badly,” he concluded.

The former vice-president’s team is also looking to be made up of extremely wealthy individuals as well. His transition task squad has been, in his website’s words, crafted to ensure they “reflect the values and priorities of the incoming administration,” and includes executives from Lyft, Amazon, Capital One, Uber, Visa, and JP Morgan.

One name being strongly floated for a cabinet position is former mayor of Chicago Rahm Emanuel, a move being met with vocal opposition from the left

Many of the president-elect’s potential picks for foreign policy positions — including Susan Rice and Michele Flourney — have onlookers worried. “With a Biden administration, we can expect a continuation of the Middle East wars and possible escalations in places like Syria. Biden could be better than Trump on Iran and Yemen, but judging by his potential cabinet picks, that should not be expected without significant pressure from antiwar activists and lobbyists in Washington,” Dave DeCamp, assistant news editor of told MintPress. “His administration will likely be more successful than Trump at expanding the empire, with a more diplomatic and coherent approach at building alliances to face Russia and China.”

Rice, who was the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and National Security Advisor under Obama, has amassed a fortune of around $40 million. After leaving office, she was given a spot on the board of Netflix, being paid $366,666 as a base salary.

Flournoy, meanwhile, was Under Secretary of Defense for Policy from 2009 to 2012 in the Obama administration under Secretaries Robert Gates and Leon Panetta. After “serving the country,” she received lucrative consulting contracts, joined corporate boards, and began her own security think tank, WestExec Advisors. By 2017, she was making a reported $452,000 annually.

“Certainly the possible selection of Michele Flournoy and other WestExec advisors people is concerning,” Biden biographer Branko Marcetic told MintPress.

This isn’t just because of their corporate/financial ties, though of course that’s alarming — can we be sure that people whose private sector career involved leveraging their government experience and contacts to help multinationals secure favorable business conditions will have their intentions calibrated toward good policy and not to their private sector career?”

“Biden claims he wants an end to the Yemen conflict, but again, words are only so much. It’s highly likely that he will have Michele Flornoy as his Secretary of Defense who was one of the voices that stated that weapons should continue to be sold to Saudia Arabia (during the Yemen conflict), under certain conditions, as they have a right to protect themselves. This speaks volumes,” said Mariamne Everett of the Institute for Public Accuracy. Rice and Flournoy, she added, were vocal supporters of the disastrous Iraq War, which does not bode well for those concerned with peace.

Marcetic agreed, noting that, while in office, Flourney was “a major liberal interventionist hawk who not only wants U.S. troops deployed all over the world, but has also publicly advocated for the U.S. to majorly exploit its fossil fuel reserves for global dominance,” something which would be a “disaster for containing climate catastrophe.”

The recycling of old faces (many of them considerably richer than before) into the new administration suggests that there will be few breaks from the past on policy, and more in the way of continuation. Biden himself has largely acknowledged this, tweeting, “When I’m speaking to foreign leaders, I’m telling them: America is going to be back. We’re going to be back in the game.” To many suffering under U.S. sanctions or hiding from U.S. bombs, these words will likely not comfort them. DeCamp suggested that there will be no great difference in policy between Trump and Biden administration.

(B P)

What we want the @JoeBiden Admin. to do in the first 100 days? *Stop foreign aggression on #Yemen *Stop weapons & war support for Saudi Arabia & United Arab Emirates *Lift the blockade on Yemen & open all land & seaports *Restore & expand humanitarian aid for the people of Yemen

(A P)

Congress: Block Trump’s last ditch UAE weapons sale

Sign now to tell Congress: End U.S. complicity in Yemen, stop Trump’s last ditch arms sale to the UAE.

(* B P)

With Biden, a Saudi reboot

Under a Biden administration, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia will have to reboot its bilateral relationship with the United States. For the past four years, Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman, or MBS as he is known, and Jared Kushner have built a transactional relationship devoid of longer-term strategic value. This hug between Washington and Riyadh favored MBS. The Trump administration, for example, largely ignored the Jamal Khashoggi killing, the Yemen war and its ensuing humanitarian catastrophe, and the systematic abuse of womens’ rights activists in order — primarily — to increase arms’ sales and only secondarily to build a buffer against Iran.

The Biden administration is expected to review the fundamentals of the U.S.-Saudi Arabia relationship through the lens of human rights, good governance, open markets, and shared concern for Middle East stability. While Riyadh must balance Russian and Chinese interests, the kingdom’s economic and political future remains with Washington if the Saudi royal family hopes to meet the aspirations of its young, sophisticated, and growing population.

Here are three opportunities to realign American-Saudi relations.

First, Saudi Arabia should normalize relations with Israel by following the lead of the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, and Sudan.

Second, the incoming Biden administration gives Saudi Arabia an opportunity to exit the Yemen war, a conflict that is counterproductive, expensive, and unending.

Unfortunately, in the waning days of the Trump presidency, the Saudis are pushing the administration to designate the Houthis as a terrorist organization.

If the Saudis want out of Yemen, Riyadh will need all of the help it can get from the international community. Last minute plays to the departing Trump administration are unhelpful when the incoming Biden administration is set to decide on further arms sales to the Kingdom, both relative to the Yemen war and more broadly. The results of the November election give Saudi Arabia a strong rationale to exit from a war which it has already lost.

Finally, while the Trump administration ignored Saudi Arabia’s track record on human rights, President-elect Biden will demand a higher standard.

The Saudis could begin by releasing political prisoners held solely for their peaceful practice of free expression and association.

My comment: A Saudi-Israel agreement actually would not be a break, but a continuation of Trump / Pompeo policy.

(B P)

Kamala Harris: US will reverse Trump-era policy, restore relation with Palestine

In comments that are likely to cause deep anxiety in Saudi Arabia, Harris stated that the US will not stand by and watch Riyadh wreak havoc in the region. "Instead of standing by as the government of Saudi Arabia pursues disastrous, dangerous policies, including the ongoing war in Yemen, we will reassess the U.S. relationship with Saudi Arabia and end support for the Saudi-led war in Yemen," said Harris.

Harris also commented on Trump's highly controversial Muslim ban. "Discrimination and bigotry will have no place in a Biden-Harris administration," she added. "On our first day in office, Joe and I will rescind the un-American Muslim travel and refugee bans and make America, once again, a welcoming destination for immigrants and refugees, including by raising the refugee admissions cap."

cp9a USA-Iran Krise: Spannungen am Golf / US-Iran crisis: Tensions at the Gulf

(A P)

UN atomic watchdog: Iran now operating Natanz centrifuges

The head of the U.N. atomic watchdog agency confirmed on Wednesday reports that Iran has begun operating centrifuges installed at an underground site, but said they had been moved from another facility so the country’s overall uranium-enriching capabilities have not increased.

(A P)

Iran ready for full JCPOA commitment, but wary of US behavior: Khatibzadeh says in exclusive Press TV interview

Speaking in an exclusive interview with Press TV, Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman has said the Islamic Republic is prepared to return to full implementation of its nuclear agreement with world countries, but is wary of how the next US administration will act.

(A P)

US announces further drawdown of troops in Afghanistan and Iraq before Biden takes office

Acting Secretary of Defense Christopher Miller announced Tuesday that the US will withdraw thousands more US troops from Afghanistan and Iraq by January 15, 2021 -- just days before President-elect Joe Biden takes office, confirming plans first reported by CNN on Monday.

Miller said the withdrawal, which will leave approximately 2,500 troops in Afghanistan and roughly the same number in Iraq, "does not equate change" to US policies or objectives but provided no details about the plan and refused to answer questions following Tuesday's appearance in the Pentagon briefing room.

Currently there are approximately 4,500 US troops in Afghanistan and 3,000 troops in Iraq.

National security adviser Robert O'Brien discussed the drawdown from the White House driveway shortly after the Pentagon announcement, but like Miller he did not take any questions from journalists about the decision.

(* B K P)

Biden transition, Gulf leaders should start talking about Iran

Saudi Arabia and the UAE should reach out to the Biden team now, creating a back channel to promote both Gulf and US security interests in the final months of Trump's presidency.

There is a decision point now for those states that seek to be regional powers and leaders of the new Middle East. Saudi Arabia faces the sharpest dilemma: Insecure in how the Biden administration will treat it, the propensity of the crown prince will be for action rather than process. But this is the wrong approach. Saudi Arabia needs to reach out to the Biden team now, and the Biden administration needs to make its intentions very clear, and very early. We need a back channel. And for the United Arab Emirates, they are positioned to survive Trump and appease Biden, but they have the most to lose in a regional conflagration. The UAE would be devastated by regional conflict in its economic recovery efforts, dependent on all of the same sectors most sensitive to the COVID-19 pandemic: transport, logistics, tourism and real estate. The UAE also risks a meltdown next door, one in which Saudi Arabia risks a poor military performance and lack of combat coordination, something they have seen before in Yemen.

There is the easy choice of war and confrontation with Iran, or there is the choice of the actual hard work of diplomacy, governance, political liberalization and economic reform.

In the two months left before Biden is inaugurated, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is the new John Bolton — hawkish and rejecting the JCPOA as "silly" as much for ideological opposition to the Islamic Republic as for the sake of his political future. He might want to start a war with Iran in partnership with Israel, the UAE and Saudi Arabia if he can swing it, to build his credentials among evangelicals and the anti-Iran constituency, building his platform to run for office in 2024 without any responsibility for the cleanup of the mess he makes now.

For the Gulf Arab states, namely Saudi Arabia and the UAE, this is the time to talk. This is the time to hear very clearly from the incoming administration what it seeks in the region and how it will proceed from day 1. The words "withdrawal" and "pivot" should not be part of that conversation. Partnership, a seat at the negotiation table and a commitment to regional security, including a reiteration of the Carter Doctrine, would be the message Gulf Arab leaders need to hear and that the incoming Biden administration should be able to offer. And they can hear that privately.

My comment: A typical US article taking US global dominance for a natural, god-given matter.

(* B K P)

Donald Trump Asked For Options to Attack Iran's Main Nuclear Site Last Week: Reports

US President Donald Trump sought to know his options for attacking Iran's main nuclear site last week, according to at least two reports. After discussing with his advisers, Donald Trump later decided against the idea of attacking Iran's nuclear site, news agency Reuters reported quoting a US official. A similar report was carried by The New York Times with quotes from "current and former US officials".

“He (Trump) asked for options. They gave him the scenarios and he ultimately decided not to go forward," a US official told Reuters. Trump asked for options for targeting Iran's main nuclear site during a meeting on November 12 with his top national security aides, including Vice President Mike Pence, his new Acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller and General Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

The report by The New York Times said that the advisers persuaded Trump not to go ahead with a military strike against Iran because it would escalate the ongoing conflict between the US and Iran "in the last weeks of Trump's presidency". "After Mr Pompeo and General Milley described the potential risks of military escalation, officials left the meeting believing a missile attack inside Iran was off the table," the report said.

(* B K P)

Saudi-Arabien schließt atomare Bewaffnung nicht aus

Das Abkommen zur Verhinderung einer iranischen Atombombe steht seit dem Ausstieg der USA auf der Kippe. Was daraus nach dem Machtwechsel in Washington wird, ist unklar. Ziemlich klar ist dagegen, dass ein Domino-Effekt droht, wenn Iran die Atomkraft militärisch nutzt.

Saudi-Arabien behält sich eine atomare Bewaffnung für den Fall vor, dass eine iranische Atombombe nicht verhindert werden kann. «Das ist definitiv eine Option», sagte der Staatsminister für Auswärtiges, Adel al-Dschubair, in einem Interview der Deutschen Presse-Agentur.

Wenn der Iran zur Nuklearmacht werde, würden andere Länder folgen. «Und Saudi-Arabien hat sehr klar gemacht, dass es alles tun wird, was möglich ist, um seine Bevölkerung zu schützen und um sein Staatsgebiet zu schützen.»

(A P)

Iran blasts ‘hate-mongering’ in Saudi king’s comments

Iran criticises Saudi monarch urging global action against Tehran, calling for unity among Muslim nations.

The Iranian foreign ministry has responded to Saudi Arabia’s call for global action against Iran, calling in turn on the kingdom to refrain from “baseless allegations and hate-mongering”.

The remarks came a day after Saudi Arabia’s King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud urged the world to take a “decisive stance” to address Iran’s efforts to develop its nuclear and ballistic missile programmes.

In a virtual press conference in Tehran, foreign ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh said on Monday it was not “unnatural” for Saudi rulers to make such remarks.

“But I believe Iran’s message has been clear … the Saudi regime must know that peace cannot be achieved through killing the people of Yemen, the region cannot be ruled through propagating Wahhabism and takfiri groups, money cannot be spent to lobby, and resources of the Muslim world cannot be spent to betray Palestine,” he said.

“So long as Saudi rulers don’t turn back from this wrong path, there will be no prospect of improving the isolated Saudi situation even in the Persian Gulf region.”

(A P)

Iran strebt weiterhin Ende der Differenzen mit Saudi-Arabien an

Der Iran strebt nach eigenen Angaben trotz mehrerer Absagen von Seiten Riads ein Ende der Differenzen mit Saudi-Arabien an. „Wir sind und bleiben nun mal Nachbarn, daher haben wir und die Saudis auch keine andere Wahl, als diese Feindseligkeiten zu beenden“, sagte Außenamtssprecher Said Chatibsadeh am Montag. Leider hätten die saudischen Führer bislang alle Vermittlungsbemühungen dazu abgelehnt, sagte der Sprecher in einer Video-Pressekonferenz auf Instagram. Anstatt mit den USA Waffengeschäfte in Milliardenhöhe abzuschließen, sollten die Führer in Riad die Zusammenarbeit mit der islamischen Welt wieder aufnehmen, fügte der Sprecher hinzu. =

(A P)

US must be expelled from Iraq in line with parliament approval: IRGC chief commander

All the American forces must leave Iraq in line with a decision approved by the Iraqi parliament, says the chief commander of Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC).

(A P)

Iraqi parliament resolution on US troops’ pullout not affected by change in White House: Lawmaker

The change in the US administration cannot impact the implementation of a resolution adopted by Iraq’s parliament concerning the withdrawal of US terrorist forces from the country, says a senior Iraqi lawmaker, stressing that the decision is irreversible.

(A P)

Defense ties with Iran to boost Iraq’s security as US tries to revive terrorists: Gen. Baqeri

Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces Major General Mohammad Baqeri says defense cooperation between neighboring Iran and Iraq will improve security in the Arab country in the face of US efforts to revive terrorists in the region.

(* B P)

The Iran Hawks’ Bad Faith Comes Back To Bite Them

Tyler Cullis urges the incoming Biden administration not to fall for the “sanctions wall” trap being set by Iran hawks:

The so-called “flood” of sanctions being prepared in the coming weeks is more of the same. These sanctions are not designed to change Iran’s behavior or to deter it from conduct anathema to U.S. interests. Instead, the whole point of the sanctions is to set a trap for the Biden administration.

The Biden administration would do well not to fall into this trap. Absent immediate steps to undo the damage wrought by Trump and reinvigorate the JCPOA through a compliance-for-compliance agreement with Iran, President Biden will face the same crisis that prevailed in the lead-up to the JCPOA where Iran’s nuclear program built in step with U.S. sanctions.

Iran hawks in and outside the Trump administration have been explicit that their goal in continuing to pile on more sanctions on Iran is to tie the hands of the next president and prevent him from reentering the JCPOA. They have touted this as their “sanctions wall,” and they have been very proud of their obstructionism. The trouble for the Iran hawks is that they have made no secret that they are acting in bad faith that it should be a simple matter for Biden to undo their work fairly quickly. While many of the Trump administration’s new designations ostensibly target Iranian individuals and institutions with non-nuclear sanctions, the stated purpose for imposing them has been to help scuttle the JCPOA. This makes them nuclear sanctions by another name

cp10 Großbritannien / Great Britain

(B K P)

Britain should no longer profit from slaughter in Yemen

When G20 leaders gather online this weekend for their annual summit it will be hosted by the country that bears perhaps more responsibility than any other for the world’s worst humanitarian crisis (paywalled)

(A H K P)

Minister James Cleverly: We need extra funding to keep life-saving humanitarian programmes in Yemen open, and keep unfettered humanitarian access for those in need. The UK, other donor countries, charities & @UN met this week and called for urgent action, before it's too late.

Comments: This is the twisted logic, it’s our bombs alongside the US that is causing the genocide in Yemen and we are training the pilots doing it, so u want funding from one set of donors to support and aid the consequences of the arms profiteering that your other donors are doing wtf

The greatest contribution the UK government could make to the people of Yemen would be to stop selling arms to Saudi Arabia and other parties to the war

Great point James. That's why I'm looking forward to your announcement that you're quitting the tories in protest at their selling weapons that murder Yemenis. What's that? You're not? Oh wow.

What about using some of the £4.7bn-worth of arms deals with Saudi - Or, and I’m really going for some blue sky thinking here.... Stop enabling training and arming Saudi

The shame of killing babies can make even the brightest mind want to hide itself from the truth.

We make money selling arms to kill and maim people and then spend it rebuilding their homes and curing them. Weird sort of bargain. Only thing is - the money made goes into the manufacturers' bank accounts. The money spent comes from the taxpayer.

cp11 Deutschland / Germany

(A K P)

Germany's ban on arms exports to Saudi Arabia serves peace in Yemen, Karman

Yemeni human rights activist and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Tawakkol Karman said on Tuesday that Germany's ban on arms exports to Saudi Arabia will contribute to establishing peace in Yemen.

"This decision will prevent Saudi Arabia from accessing more death tools, and committing more crimes. It will definitely contribute to achieving Peace for Yemen and other places subject to Saudi abuses," she added.

(* B K P)

,Weniger’ deutsche Waffenexporte 2020 sind kein Grund zur Entwarnung!

Im Vergleich zur historischen Höchstmarke von 2019 sind die Waffenexportgenehmigungen der Bundesrepublik Deutschland in den ersten neun Monaten des Jahres 2020 gesunken. Allerdings trügt der Schein. Deutsche Waffen spielen eine immer entscheidendere Rolle für kriegführende Drittstaaten.

Mit genehmigten Kriegswaffen im Wert von etwa 2,6 Milliarden Euro und 5,4 Milliarden-Euro-schweren „sonstigen Rüstungsgütern“ markierte 2019 einen historischen Rekord an Rüstungsexporten aus Deutschland. Im Jahr 2020 weisen die Zahlen bisher auf einen Rückgang hin. Aus den veröffentlichten Werten für das dritte Quartal des Jahres 2020 ergibt sich für alle bisher genehmigten Rüstungsexporte ein Gesamtwert von 4,1 Milliarden Euro. Allerdings ist die Lage weniger klar als dieser Vergleich annehmen lässt. Die Zahlen für den Zeitraum vor dem vollen Umfang der Pandemie-Einbrüche weisen im Gegenteil auf eine Fortführung des Trends hin. Der Export von deutschen Kriegswaffen ist im Vergleich zum Rekordjahr im ersten Jahresdrittel sogar um 40 Prozent angestiegen.

Die Waffengeschäfte boomen vor dem Hintergrund laufender Ermittlungen gegen deutsche Rüstungsunternehmen. Im Koalitionsvertrag der Bundesregierung unter Union und SPD von 2018 heißt es, man wolle „ab sofort keine Ausfuhren an Länder genehmigen, solange diese unmittelbar am Jemen-Krieg beteiligt sind“. Bereits im Folgejahr reichten Menschenrechtsorganisationen aus mehreren europäischen Ländern und dem Jemen eine Strafanzeige gegen Rheinmetall und Airbus vor dem Internationalen Strafgerichtshof (IStGH) in Den Haag ein. Sie begründeten den Vorwurf der Kriegsverbrechen mit fortlaufenden Rüstungslieferungen der deutschen Unternehmen an Kriegsparteien im Jemen. Zwar hat die Bundesregierung von März bis Ende 2020 ein Rüstungsexportstopp an Saudi-Arabien erlassen, das unmittelbar im Jemen Krieg führt. Über Ägypten, das Teil der Kriegsallianz im Jemen ist, werden jedoch weiterhin deutsche Waffen in der Kriegsregion genutzt. Die tödlichsten Exporte sind dabei sogenannte „Kleinwaffen“ wie Pistolen und Maschinengewehre.

Dass deutsche Waffenexporte unter anderem coronabedingt geringer ausfallen, gibt also keinen Anlass zur Annahme, dass der de facto Einsatz von deutschen Rüstungsgütern bei Kriegsverbrechen und Menschenrechtsverletzungen abgenommen hat. Deutschland bleibt auch 2020 einer der bedeutendsten Rüstungsexporteure der Welt.

(A P)

Die Linke: Menschenrechtssituation in Saudi-Arabien

16.11.20 - Kleine Anfrage - Drucksache Nr. 19/24170

Vor dem Hintergrund der saudischen G20-Präsidentschaft erkundigen wir uns nach der Menschenrechtslage in Saudi-Arabien und den Konsequenzen, die die Bundesregierung daraus zieht. Die Missachtung der grundlegenden Menschenrechte dauert ungeachtet einer Imagekampagne des Regimes weiter an. Saudi-Arabien führt seit mehr als fünf Jahren eine Militärallianz an, die sich am Krieg im Jemen beteiligt, der die schlimmste humanitäre Krise der Welt ausgelöst hat.

Herunterladen als PDF

(A H)

Mann aus dem Jemen positiv getestet

Ein allein reisender Mann aus dem Jemen ist in der Landesunterkunft für Flüchtlinge in Bad Segeberg positiv auf das Coronavirus getestet worden.

cp12 Andere Länder / Other countries

(B H)

Irish dairy farmers' milk donations raise over €100k for famine-hit Yemen

A campaign to encourage Irish dairy farmers to raise funds for those affected by war and famine in Yemen has so far raised more than €100,000.

The 'Together for Yemen' fundraising effort is the brainchild of Longford farmer Mike Magan.

An RTÉ News report in June of this year struck a chord with the Killashee man, when it detailed the spread of Covid in the troubled famine-stricken country.

It also featured a father and his young child, whom Mr Magan "could not get out of" his head.

The campaign asks each of Ireland’s dairy farmers to donate the equivalent of one day's milk from a cow to the Red Cross to distribute in Yemen. There are 15,000 dairy farmers in Ireland.

cp12b Sudan

(* B P)

Sudan minister reveals US pressured Sudan to normalize with Israel

US President Donald Trump placed Sudan under “heavy pressure” to normalize relations with the occupying regime of Israel and sought to use the normalization deal as a card in his favor during the US presidential election on November 3, a Sudanese government minister has told Press TV.

Sudan’s Minister of Information Faisal Mohamed Saleh made the revelation in an exclusive interview with Press TV’s correspondent in the Sudanese capital of Khartoum, Ahmed Kaballo, on Monday.

Trump announced at the White House in October that Sudan and Israel had agreed to normalize relations. Sudan thus became the third Arab country — after the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Bahrain — to agree to a normalization deal with Israel since August.

But no signing ceremony has been held between Sudan and Israel so far.

Sudan’s Acting Foreign Minister Omar Gamareldin has said the accord would depend on approval from its yet-to-be formed legislative council under a power-sharing deal between the country’s military and civilian leaders.

The US has promised to remove Sudan from Washington’s list of so-called state sponsors of terrorism (SST). That has widely been seen as the sole incentive for Sudan’s normalization with the Israeli regime.

“In the last few months, the question of normalization with Israel was raised and that was not raised only with Sudan, as you may see, with Emirates, Bahrain, and other countries. And we insisted on two things, the separation of the two issues. We used to say to them, and that was said to US Secretary of State [Mike] Pompeo when he came to Sudan, that these are two separate issues, delisting Sudan from SST, [which] we are negotiating on that for 17 or 18 months, and normalization with Israel, that is a very controversial issue,” Saleh told Press TV on Monday.

“Our response to him (Trump) was that we are a transitional government and this issue is not one of our mandate… This should be left to an elected government to discuss… Then, the American pressure on Sudan started…,” the Sudanese minister said.

“He (Trump) used to raise the issues until maybe the last two weeks before the American election, and I think Sudan was used as a card in the election,” he added.

(A H)

UN: Over 25,300 fleeing Ethiopia fighting have reached Sudan

(A P)

Rebel leaders who inked deal with government return to Sudan

Sudan’s rebel leaders returned to the capital, Khartoum on Sunday, signaling the first major steps toward implementing a peace agreement with the government that aims to end the country’s decades-long civil war.

Gen. Abdel-Fattah Burhan, head of Sudan’s ruling sovereign council, welcomed leaders of the Sudan Revolutionary Front as “partners and peacemakers” upon their arrival from South Sudan.

The front — a coalition of several armed groups centered in the western Darfur region, South Kordofan and Blue Nile — inked a peace agreement with the transitional government on Oct. 3 after months of arduous negotiations in South Sudan’s capital, Juba.

(A K P)

Egypt, Sudan launch joint military exercises

The exercises run by Egyptian and Sudanese commando and air forces were the first joint combat training held since the ouster of Sudanese autocrat Omar al-Bashir last year.

(A P)

Russia to establish military base in Sudan

cp13a Waffenhandel / Arms trade

Siehe / Look at cp1

(A K P)

Saudi-backed mercenaries reportedly using Turkish drones

(A K P)

UAE imports arms from N. Korea worth hundreds of millions of US dollars for its militias in Yemen, reads a headline on Newsline website.

(* B K P)

NGO’s demand France to give parliament control over arms sales

Fourteen of the world’s top human rights- and humanitarian organisations call the French government to “end France’s opacity on arms sales” and to “establish real parliamentary control.” The call comes ahead of the publication of a parliamentary fact-finding report on arms export control to be published on 18 November.

In a joint press release, co-signed by Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, the International Federation for Human Rights FIDH, Oxfam, and local organisations such as the Cairo Institute for Human Rights and Salam for Yemen say that parliamentary control is “essential since French arms sales have been shown to be responsible for certain serious violations of humanitarian law, particularly in Yemen, where those violations have dramatic consequences for the civilian population.

In December 2018, the Foreign Affairs Committee of France’s Parliament created a fact-finding mission on arms export control, headed by MPs Michèle Tabarot and Jacques Maire, as a result of public opinion and NGO mobilisation against French arms sales to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, “likely to be used illegally against civilians in Yemen.”

French weapon sales to Saudi Arabia were first exposed to the public by the investigative website Disclose, in a report “Made in France.”

Based on leaked documents of the French Military Intelligence (DRM), Disclose mapped out the scale of French arms sales to Saudi Arabia and the impact the had in the war in Yemen and concluded that the extensive use of French-made Leclerc tanks and Cesar howitzers contributed to the death of dozens of civilians between 2016 and 2018.

The 14 NGO’s argue that France is an exception among western democracies as its Parliament has no ability to exercise real control over arms sales carried out by the Executive, unlike the United States, the United Kingdom and Germany, where parliamentary control over arms sales is in place.

They also point out that in 2019 Saudi Arabia was among the top three countries that imported the most French arms, while the United Arab Emirates ordered a record number of French arms.

“And this despite their alleged responsibility for serious and repeated violations of international humanitarian law in Yemen,” the group says. As a result, “80% of the population is now in need of humanitarian aid. This is a preventable tragedy.”

and original statement:

(* B H K P)

Jemen-Krieg: Wert von Waffenexporten der G20 um ein Vielfaches höher als ihre humanitäre Hilfe

Oxfam-Analyse zeigt das Missverhältnis zwischen Waffenexporten u.a. an Saudi-Arabien und humanitärer Hilfe für den Jemen

Mitglieder der G20 haben Waffen im Wert von mehr als 17 Milliarden US-Dollar nach Saudi-Arabien exportiert, seit der Golfstaat 2015 Kriegspartei im Jemen wurde. Dies ist das Dreifache dessen, was die G20 aufbringen, um dort humanitäre Hilfe zu leisten. Das zeigen aktuelle Berechnungen, die die Nothilfe- und Entwicklungsorganisation Oxfam heute veröffentlicht. Ende dieser Woche findet ein von Saudi-Arabien ausgerichtetes virtuelles Gipfeltreffen der Staats- und Regierungschefs statt. Oxfam fordert von den G20 einen größeren Beitrag zum Hilfsaufruf der Vereinten Nationen sowie mehr Engagement für einen Waffenstillstand und Friedensverhandlungen.

Bezieht man die anderen Mitglieder der Militärkoalition ein, steigt der Wert der Waffen, die die G20 zwischen 2015 und 2019 (dem letzten Jahr, für das entsprechende Daten vorliegen) exportierten, von 17 Milliarden US-Dollar auf mindestens 31,4 Milliarden an. Das ist mehr als das Fünffache des Betrages, den die Mitgliedsstaaten der G20 zwischen 2015 und 2020 an humanitärer Hilfe für den Jemen geleistet haben.

Bei einige G20-Staaten, etwa die USA und das Vereinigte Königreich, ist die Diskrepanz zwischen dem Wert ihrer Waffenexporte und dem Beitrag für humanitäre Hilfe sehr groß. Einige Länder, zum Beispiel Japan, haben in den vergangenen fünf Jahren humanitäre Hilfe im Jemen geleistet, aber keine Waffen nach Saudi-Arabien exportiert. Wieder andere Länder, wie Argentinien, haben weder das eine noch das andere getan. Saudi-Arabien selbst hat im Jemen humanitäre Hilfe im Wert von 3,8 Milliarden US-Dollar geleistet.

Deutschland nimmt mit knapp 842 Millionen US-Dollar einen der vordersten Plätze bei den Geberstaaten für humanitäre Hilfe im Jemen ein. Gleichzeitig beliefert es aber weiterhin Mitglieder der Militärkoalition wie Ägypten und die Vereinigten Arabischen Emirate großzügig mit Waffen.

und auch

(* B H K P)

G20 arms exports to Saudi Arabia worth three times aid to Yemen since 2015

Other members of the G20 have exported more than US$17bn worth of arms to Saudi Arabia since it became involved in the conflict in Yemen in 2015 but have given only a third of that amount in aid to Yemenis, Oxfam said today.

“Making billions from arms exports which fuel the conflict while providing a small fraction of that in aid to Yemen is both immoral and incoherent. The world’s wealthiest nations cannot continue to put profits above the Yemeni people.”

(A K P)

Saudischer Staatsminister: «Wir brauchen keine deutschen Waffen»

Der saudische Staatsminister für Auswärtiges, Adel al-Dschubair, hat den deutschen Rüstungsexportstopp für sein Land als «falsch» und «unlogisch» kritisiert. In einem Interview der Deutschen Presse-Agentur machte er aber auch deutlich, dass Saudi-Arabien nicht auf deutsche Rüstungsgüter angewiesen sei: «Wir brauchen keine deutschen Waffen, um unser Militär zu betreiben.»

Die Bundesregierung entscheidet in den nächsten Wochen darüber, ob das seit 2018 geltende Waffenembargo für Saudi-Arabien über den 31. Dezember hinaus verlängert werden soll. Es geht auf den Koalitionsvertrag von Union und SPD zurück, in dem ein Rüstungsexportstopp für alle «unmittelbar» am Jemen-Krieg beteiligten Länder festgeschrieben wurde.

Auch die deutschen Waffenschmieden machten vor dem Lieferstopp gute Geschäfte mit den Saudis. 2017 stand das autoritär geführte Land mit einem Exportvolumen von 254 Millionen Euro noch auf Platz 6 der wichtigsten Empfängerländer deutscher Rüstungsgüter. Auch wenn die direkten Lieferungen nun gestoppt sind, können immer noch Komponenten für Gemeinschaftsprodukte mit anderen Ländern über Umwege exportiert werden. So erlaubte die Bundesregierung 2019 und 2020 Zulieferungen für «Eurofighter»- und «Tornado»-Kampfjets, die für Saudi-Arabien bestimmt sind.

Die Verhandlungen in der Koalition über eine Verlängerung des Rüstungsexportstopps laufen bereits. Für die SPD kommt eine Aufhebung nicht in Frage. «Ohne grundlegende Kehrtwende Saudi-Arabiens im Jemen-Krieg kann und darf es deswegen weiterhin keine Rüstungsexporte geben», sagte die stellvertretende Fraktionsvorsitzende im Bundestag, Gabriela Heinrich, der dpa. Für die SPD-Fraktion sei klar, dass der Lieferstopp mindestens bis Ende der Legislaturperiode verlängert werden müsse. «Wir brauchen endlich eine Neuausrichtung der deutschen Rüstungsexportpolitik, denn Waffen sind keine normalen Wirtschaftsgüter.»;art295,4416901 =

(A K P)

Makes no difference’: Saudi minister slams German arms ban

After being extended multiple times, Germany’s ban on arms exports to Saudi Arabia will once again be up for discussion.

Saudi Arabia has criticised Germany’s arms export ban on the Gulf kingdom as “wrong” and “illogical” and said it does not need German military equipment.

“The idea that weapon sales were stopped to Saudi Arabia because of the Yemen war I think is illogical,” said Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel al-Jubeir.

“We think it’s wrong because we think the war in Yemen is a legitimate war. It’s a war that we were forced into it,” he told the German press agency dpa.

After being extended multiple times, Germany’s ban on arms exports will once again be up for discussion in the coming weeks as the latest deadline, December 31, draws closer.

“We can buy weapons from a number of countries, and we do so. Saying we’re not going to sell weapons to Saudi Arabia doesn’t make a difference to us,” said al-Jubeir.

He also emphasised that Saudi Arabia did not want to put Germany under pressure over the matter. “I am just saying people need to look at this from a balanced perspective.”

cp13b Mercenaries / Söldner

(* B K P)

Growing reliance on mercenaries spells more chaos in the region

Private force has become big business. No one knows how many billions of dollars move around in this illegal market. Since the turn of the century, mercenary activity has played a major role in Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen, Nigeria, Ukraine, Syria and Libya. More recently, it played a central role in the fighting in Nagorno Karabakh. In the 2017 fiscal year, the Pentagon gave $320 billion to federal contracts, 71% of which was for “services” – a heading under which the use of private military companies falls.

The Middle East region is awash with soldiers of fortune looking for work.

It is hardly surprising that states hire mercenaries: The Nigerian army failed to make inroads against Boko Haram for six years and in the Middle East, national armies make slow progress while the United Nations is absent.

Sean McFate, a former paratrooper and private military contractor who is now an associate professor at the US National Defence University, provided in “The Modern Mercenary” (OUP 2014) an unparalleled perspective into the nuts and bolts of this opaque world, explaining the economic structure of the industry and showing in detail how firms operate on the ground. The name Blackwater, renamed Xe Services and now Academi, has sometimes made the news.

As McFate points out, “contract warfare has become a new way of warfare, resurrected by the United States and imitated by others.”

But what are the causes of this rather quick reversal to mercenaries after more than three centuries of national armies? As the world became more unstable at the end of the Cold War, the US began downsizing its massive military by 40% in order to reap a “peace dividend.” Active-duty soldiers, sailors and airmen were reduced from 2.2 million to 1.4 million, troops stationed overseas shrunk by half, all of which left many well trained men without a job. Meanwhile, instability was growing: Whereas the US Army conducted ten operational events outside of normal training and alliance commitments between 1960 and 1991, that number jumped to 26 between 1991 and 1998. “Humane warfare” came into fashion and thus was borne a new world in which drones and the private military industry, the only one to provide Ground Zero soldiers, would do the dying for America.

Together with private intelligence industries, private armies are here to stay, and to grow, which opens up the possibility of wars without states – private wars – a concept that is inconceivable to most national security leaders or heads of state. Privatising war distorts warfare, opening up the strategies of the souk – everything is up for sale and must be bartered for. Fraud, deception, deceit and hard bargaining are the watchwords, but so are value and exotic merchandise. There are no refunds, returns or exchanges. Private war lowers the barriers for entry and breeds war; anyone who can afford mercenaries will be tempted to go to war. As for states used to conventional warfare, they are totally unprepared for what is already happening. The inevitable consequences, not least in the Middle East and Africa, will be rewritten frontiers, greater violence and some unexpected losers.

cp13c Wirtschaft / Economy

(* B E)

Yemeni exchange firms stop trading as currency reaches record low

Exchange companies in the government-controlled areas have suspended trading in the dollar and the other foreign currencies after the Yemeni riyal hit a record low, local officials and moneychangers said.

Yemeni riyal tumbled to 855 against the US dollar on Wednesday, breaking a previous record 850 in September. In city of Al-Mukalla, the capital of the southeastern province of Hadramout, moneychangers turned away people who wanted to exchange the Saudi riyal or the dollar, citing orders from their bosses to stop buying or selling foreign currencies.

In September, the Central Bank of Yemen (CBY) launched a crackdown on unauthorized exchange companies, banned the internal transfer network between exchange companies — known as hawala — and provided oil importers with dollars with the aim of curbing the fall of the currency. The measures helped the currency make a brief recovery to 800 against the dollar, before falling again this week.

(* B E)

Energy situation of Yemen

In Yemen, the ongoing civil war since 2014 between the incumbent government backed by Saudi Arabia and the Houthi rebels has had a devastating impact on all levels. In terms of energy, the majority of major energy infrastructures have been shut down, such as the gas and oil fields, the Aden refinery or the Balhaf gas liquefaction unit (of which the Total group was the main shareholder).

In the following document in English published on November 13, the US EIA (Energy Information Administration) updates its data on oil and natural gas in Yemen. This inventory is followed by a detailed report on the energy situation in this country before the start of the civil war.

After falling to 18,000 barrels per day in 2016, Yemeni crude oil production rose slightly to 70,000 bpd in 2019, a very low level of production, especially compared to that reached at the beginning of the years. 2010 (284,000 bpd in 2010). Yemeni production of natural gas remains almost zero.

and study in full (from 2017, update from Nov. 2020):

(B E K)

Yemeni fishing sector systematically targeted and destroyed by Saudi-led invaders

The [Sanaa gov.] Yemeni Minister of Fishery, Mohammed al-Zubairi, has said on Friday that the total losses incurred by fishing sector due to the Saudi-led aggression has exceeded $9 billion.

The move came during an interview with U News Agency.

The minister confirmed that that the aggression forces have kidnapped Yemeni fishermen while they were working in Yemeni territorial waters and transferred them to prisons in Saudi Arabia, Sudan and Eritrea.

Al-Zubairi said the aggression allows giant ships to unfairly shovel waste into Yemeni territorial waters, in addition to destroying coral reefs and areas where shrimp species and marine life prosper, with stocks of the sea life almost running out in some areas as a result.

and also

cp14 Terrorismus / Terrorism

(* B T)

Strife Series on Counter-Terrorism in Modern Warfare (Part III) – Deradicalisation and its Effectiveness: A Study of Saudi Arabia and Yemen (Part 1 and 2)

The continual transformation of terrorism demands an equally changing methodology of Counter-Terrorism (CT). In the 21st Century, CT strategies embraced both ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ power instruments. More holistic approaches to understanding terrorism now directly engage with the ideological driving agents. The adoption of deradicalisation programmes, a constituent of the soft power approach, is being popularised to replace the ‘war on terror’ with the ‘war on ideas.’ Such programmes are significant components of CT policy, focusing on the use of non-coercive methods to disengage individuals from violent ideology and its operational slaughter.

Deradicalisation can be defined as ‘the social and psychological process whereby an individual’s commitment to…violent radicalisation is reduced to the extent that they are no longer at risk of involvement and engagement in violent activity.’ Therefore, the primary aim of deradicalisation programmes is to bring about a cognitive modification in the mindset of terrorists with consideration of the ‘push’ and ‘pull’ factors. The former drivers might make an individual quit the group due to adverse reasons (disillusionment with the agenda and the leadership of the organisation); the latter are relatively positive factors such as the establishment of new social relationships and financial incentives.

This piece will identify the fundamental elements of deradicalisation programmes, evaluate and identify their limitations, and assess initiatives adopted in Saudi Arabia and Yemen.

A variety of CT programmes

Even though deradicalisation programmes are being widely adopted by countries, there is a lack of formal conceptualisation about the framework and scope of such programmes

As a part of the soft power approach, deradicalisation programmes deem the ideology of terrorist organisations as illegitimate and distorted. Additionally, they can also engage with the sense of alienation, perpetuated by an ‘in-group versus out-group’ ideology, which in turn is utilised by terrorist organisations to expand their network. Deradicalisation programmes can address the issues of a fragmented society and subsequently encourage social cohesion and unification.

Case study 1: Saudi Arabia

Case study 2: Yemen

The deradicalisation programme in Yemen, called the Dialogue Committee (DC), was launched in the aftermath of the 9/11. Similar to the agenda of the Saudi programme, the primary objective of the DC was to convince the most extremist members of al-Qaeda to alter their perceptions of Islam. The agenda of the Yemeni programme was to dismantle the core ideology of the Base, which was identified as the root cause of terrorism. Therefore, this programme intended to reform the extremist outlooks of the hardcore terrorists which could eventually de-escalate potential recruitment. The organisation of the programme relied on three prominent religious clerics who engaged in dialogue with detainees on the principles of Islam, the responsibilities of a Muslim leader, the significance of jihad, and relations with Western states.

The Dialogue Committee relied on sacred texts such as the Quran to facilitate dialogue. The detainees, however, consistently criticised the Yemeni government as a tool of Western allies and therefore declared the state to be contradicting the interests of the Muslim populace. The lead cleric, judge al-Hitar, compared the texts of the Quran and the Yemeni constitution to prove their alignment and correspondence. The sole impetus of the programme was not only to mitigate radicalisation, but also to achieve political objectives such as increasing the legitimacy of the Yemeni government in the eyes of the people.

In addition to religious reorientation, the DC also encourages family participation in the process of deradicalisation of the detainee. The involvement of family was entrenched in the programme, as family members could exert social pressures on the detainees which could encourage them to denounce their radical values. Social and monetary incentives were also provided to detainees to ensure their smooth reintegration into mainstream society. The programme also encouraged the development of personal relationships and also provided aid to acquire employment.

The successful completion of the programme was followed by the decision regarding the early release of erstwhile extremists. If a detainee was released, then he was made to sign a pledge to ensure that he would refrain from participating in terrorist-related activities against the state. This aspect of the programme has been highly criticised.

In this second part, Anahad Khangura takes a critical look at the limitations of such programmes while also offering some brief conclusions on how to move forward.

Limitations of deradicalisation programmes

The critical limit of deradicalisation programmes is the inability to measure the scope and efficiency of such programmes. The lack of metrics of measurement makes it hard to assess the actual impact of the soft approach of counterterrorism on imprisoned terrorists. A variety of programmes, adopted in diverse political settings, have yielded distinct outcomes. The results of such programmes could manifest over an extended period, which limits the reliability of deradicalisation programmes. The success of deradicalisation policy depends upon the structuring of the agenda and objectives of the programme. Additionally, the socio-economic and political conditions of a state are directly proportional to the efficiency of the deradicalisation programme.

Normative and cultural factors, in the political setting, can determine the public response to risk reduction measures. Success also requires some degree of social cohesion and public mandate to support the programme. For instance, in Saudi Arabia, the societal unification and widespread public support to the programme contributed to the success of the programme. The effectiveness of a deradicalisation programme is context-specific and depends upon three factors: the nature and elements of radicalisation; the willingness and resources possessed by the political authority to counter the emerging threat; and the response of the public and the direct impact of the programme upon the society.


The hard approach of counterterrorism has been hotly criticised as it undermines the significance of the involvement of civil society in eliminating terrorism. Outside the realm of security concerns, the state should aim to escalate the potency of deradicalisation programme by strengthening the socio-economic conditions of the society. The success of deradicalisation programmes demands the provision of necessary services, basic utilities and safeguarding the rights of the populace. There is therefore an urgent need to involve civil society in the process of deradicalisation. Adoption of such programmes at the national level may prove effective, but their legitimacy would likely improve if civil society agents and organisations are involved. It was partially due to sustainable political support to the scheme in Saudi Arabia, that the programme was capable of attaining its established objectives.

In the instances of Saudi Arabia and Yemen, issues regarding staffing of the programme also occurred. Both programmes demanded the credibility of religious interlocutors to ensure to the detainees that the clerics were not instruments of interrogation of the state. In the case of the Dialogue Committee in Yemen, the clerics were afraid to participate in the programme as it could undermine their reputation. The Yemen programme was heavily understaffed in comparison to the number of detainees. Deradicalisation programmes also appeared to be demanding heavy financial investments into the programme which limits their accessibility only to resource-rich states.

The adoption of the soft approach to radicalisation may seem like a more sustainable response to extremism. However, deradicalisation programmes pose major challenges in their conduction. Religious re-education and counselling may prove to be insufficient to mitigate the outcomes of radicalisation. A major drawback of adoption of deradicalisation programmes is that to yield positive outcomes, the need to changes one’s beliefs must be self-motivated and should not be fully state-driven.

The results derived from deradicalisation programmes in Saudi and Yemen depend upon the form of governance, objectives of the programme and the public response to it.

(A T)

AQAP claims in #Yemen the past week: - Claims to have targeted a Houthi fighter by sniper on Sunday (8 November) at sites in Hadda in Sawmaah district (Al Bayda)

#AQAP operational claims in #Yemen have declined to a mere trickle and are more succinct than ever. Not even Allah gets a mention any more. Unless there’s anything substantial, I’m saving them up to report fortnightly or monthly.

(A T)

Drone strike targets al-Qaeda gathering in Marib

A drone strike, believed to have been carried out by the US Army, targeted on Saturday, a gathering of al-Qaeda militants in Wadi Ubaidah in the north of Yemen's Marib province.
According to local sources, the unmanned drone targeted al-Qaeda members on a farm in in Wadi Ubaidah, injuring at least three terrorists.
The targeted area is under the control of the pro-Hadi Brotherhood's militias (Islah Party) and also considered an epicenter of AQAP activities, the same sources added.

cp15 Propaganda

(A P)

UAE diplomat: Yemeni factions unable to reach solution

Yemen faces many challenges. The UAE withdrew its forces from the war-torn country last year. "Yemen faces a great deal of challenges not only economic, but in health and humanitarian care, and I think that the challenge with Yemen will be largely' internal'." the UAE Ambassador to the United States Yousef Al Otaiba said.
During a panel discussion at the Economic Club in Washington on Monday, Al Otaiba affirmed that what prevents the end of the war in Yemen is the inability of the Yemeni factions to reach a solution or political reconciliation, he said
"You have the Hadi government, the Houthis and the Southern Transitional Council. You have a variety of players who cannot reach an agreement on what the political formula should be, so I think that is the main challenge. We have worked with the UN envoy for several years. If you ask him about the biggest challenge he faces today, it is to bring the Yemenis together at the table", he added.

My comment: This is ridiculous when said by an UAE diplomat. Take into account the UAE interference in Yemen by which inner-Yemeni divisions had been widened. Without your interference, Yemenis much easier could have (or must have) sit together at the table. Enjoy your bedfellows and shut up.

(A P)

[Hadi] Gov’t official: Houthis follow suit of Iran

Minister of Information, Muamar Al-Eryani said on Monday that the Houthis follow suit of Iran’s regime in issuing execution orders against its opponents using the hijacked judicia authority.

“This political and military escalation by Houthis coincides with the arrival of Quds Force member Hassan Irlou and it represents implementation of Iranian regime’s approach on treatment with opponents,” Al-Eryani said

(A P)

The defence of Taiz is the defence of unified Yemen

The dimensions of the internal, regional and international game played in Taiz are clear, and the evidence is that the Houthis are satisfied with blockading its northern approaches; confrontations have been a hesitant mix between fight and flight. In the south, the separatist Southern Transitional Council, through its UAE-backed militias, is trying to stabilise the Houthis on the border of Taiz. That was the border when Yemen was divided into two states before reuniting in 1990.

This was an attempt to impose a forced demarcation for the separation of the country into two distinct states again. This explains the STC's procrastination in implementing the military and security arrangements included in the Riyadh Agreement signed with the Hadi government in 2019.

Hence, Taiz looks like it is flying with one wing, which may take it out of the power equation in the ongoing conflict if it suffers the fall that threatens it more than the city of Marib, which is only facing the threat of the Houthis. Such a fall would mean the end of the federal state project, and then Taiz's entry into political settlements, as happened with Hodeidah, in accordance with the 2018 Stockholm agreements. The latter included what are known as the "Taiz understandings", as if it were a deliberate introduction to what foreign powers are planning in cooperation with their local agents.

The last fortress of Taiz is the awareness (and will) of its people who overthrew Saleh, and drove the Houthi groups to its northern gate, but this is not enough in the face of the threat of the "triangle of evil" that lurks today. Hence, it requires a review of the management of the liberated area, politically, economically and militarily. This is what the government that will be formed under the Riyadh Agreement should undertake. The Governor of Taiz still runs it from exile, and its military and security sectors are, to some extent, separate from the two heads of the organisational hierarchy. Moreover, resources are scarce because they are divided between the parties to the conflict and corrupt official leaderships in various institutions.

In short, Taiz is facing a number of internal and external dangers that both opponents and friends are standing behind and the popular will and awareness remain a source of its desperate defence because it is actually the defence of the unified Yemen state project.

(A P)

Al-Ahmar: Houthi group is refusing proposals and solutions to end Yemen crisis

Yemen's [Hadi gov.] vice president Ali Mohsen Al-Ahmar on Monday accused the Houthi group of ignoring the peace efforts and refusing all proposals and solutions aimed at ending the Yemeni crisis.
The group's terrorist operations against cargo ships and vital regions through laying naval mines and using unmanned boats laden with explosives are posing a threat to international navigation, he wrote on Twitter.

(A P)

Designating Al Houthis as terror group will help end Yemen conflict

The UN-sponsored talks have not yielded results as attacks on Saudi Arabia continue

However, the recent escalation of attacks by Al Houthis on Saudi Arabia’s civilian population and facilities in the southern border areas shows that neither the militia nor its masters in Tehran are the least interested in peace.

The UN has so far failed to produce any tangible results in the ongoing talks due to the failure of Al Houthis to honour their promises at the negotiation table. The deal in the handover of Al Hodeida port to UN supervisors, signed last year, has yet to be implemented by the group.

Iran, which had recently admitted its military support to the Al Houthis, who overthrew the legitimate government in Yemen in September 2014, seem to be intent on prolonging the conflict for political gains. By continuing the war into the new year, when Joe Biden officially takes over the reins of the White House, Tehran thinks it will have another bargaining chip in its arsenal as they go into what many expect to be new talks to renew American commitment to the nuclear deal, which the Trump administration exited in 2018.

(A P)

#Houthis urge the #Yemen-i people to be tough! #Cartoon

Houthis intensify terrorist activities in Red Sea under Iranian instructions, Gov't

(A P)

The Yemeni government has warned of increasing terrorist activities the Houthi group is carrying out under Iranian instructions in the Red Sea.

Information minister, Muammar Al-Eryani, said in a series of tweets on Saturday using unmanned boats laden with explosives and laying naval mines prove the Houthis are implementing Iranian agendas to spread chaos and terrorism in the region.

and also

(A P)

Yemen human rights experts criticise UN panel on Yemen

Local rights organisations cited negligence in reporting of Houthi violations by the UN panel of Eminent Experts on Human Rights in Yemen

Yemeni Human Rights organisations and legal experts have accused the UN panel of Eminent Experts on Human Rights in Yemen of negligence in its reporting of rights breaches carried out by Houthi rebels.

During a workshop in Aden on Sunday, participants questioned the mechanisms followed by the panel and said they were surprised at the way its reports documented serious and grave breaches of international humanitarian law in Yemen.

The workshop was organised by the Yemeni Legal Centre and Tamkeen Organisation for Development and Human Rights, in cooperation with the Sah Organisation for Human Rights.

Participants noted "the apparent differentiation in the way the reports of the Group of Experts dealt with many serious and grave violations of International Humanitarian Law, especially with regard to the crimes of minelaying, child recruitment, bombing of houses, arbitrary detentions, indiscriminate shelling of civilians and torture, as well as the hierarchy of responsibility at the Houthi armed group," a press release issued by the organisers said.

(A P)

Ali Albukhaiti warns the U.S., European states of being lenient with Houthis

Yemeni politician and writer Ali Albukhaiti warned on Saturday of a fret future for Yemen and the region if the U.S. and western states keep being soft with the Iran-aligned Houthi insurgents.

“The U.S. & some European states believe that being lenient, and sometimes complicit, with Houthis will put more pressure on Saudi Arabia so that they could exploit it, not being aware that Houthis pose a great threat not only to the kingdom but also to international navigation. Only then will Iran have full control of the Bab al-Mandab Strait, just like it does with the Strait of Hormuz” Albukhaiti said in a Twitter post.

He reiterated that the European states did not learn the lesson from hosting Islamic political movements, warning of repeating the same mistake with Shiite wings, Hezbollah, and Houthi rebels.

(A P)

As many as 1250 companies finance the Houthi terrorism, reads a headline on Al Islah website.

(A P)

[Hadi gov.] Army Spokesman: Irlou is a military foe

The army spokesman, Abdo Mojali said on Saturday that Hassn Irlou, Iran’s newly envoy to the Houthis in Sana’a “is a military foe who entered Yemen and violated Yemeni laws and international norms.”

He threatened prosecution of Irlou to his violations to Yemen’s laws and international regulations.

(A P)

[Hadi] Gov’t warns against indoctrination risks on Yemen

Minister of Information, Muamar Al-Eryani warned on Friday against serious risks of Houthis’ indoctrination of school textbooks.

“Iran-backed Houthi militia continue tampering with school curricula. This is intended to brainwash our children in Houthis-held areas with misleading information and extremist ideology which is imported from Iran against Yemeni culture, historical and civilizational identity,” Al-Eryani said.

(A P)

Iran's envoy in Sanaa oversees building militias loyal to IRGC, says [hadi gov.] army

The spokesperson for the Yemeni government's forces Brig. Gen. Abdu Mujali, said on Friday that the main mission of Iran's envoy to the Houthi-controlled Sanaa, Hassan Eyrlo, is to oversee the building of sectarian militias loyal to the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps, IRGC.
"Eyrlo has been violating Yemeni laws and international norms. Since he arrived, he has been focusing on recruitment of children and sending them to warfronts and directing Houthis to target civilian areas in Marib, Taiz and Hodeidah provinces," Mujali said.

(A P)

More Saudi coalition „We are benefactors“ propaganda (The UN promoting Saudi “support”)

cp16 Saudische Luftangriffe / Saudi air raids

(* A K pH)

Saudi coalition air raids and shelling day by day

Nov. 15:

Nov. 14:

Nov. 13:

Nov. 12:

Nov. 11:

Nov. 10:

Nov. 9:

Nov. 8:

Nov. 7:

Nov. 6:

Nov. 5:

Nov. 4:

Nov. 3:

Nov. 2:

Nov. 1:

(A K pS)

Coalition destroys SAM 6 air defense system of Houthi militia

The Arab coalition supporting Yemen’s legitimate government said on Wednesday that it had destroyed the SAM type 6 air defense system of Houthi militias.

The coalition said that indiscriminate use of air defense systems threatens air navigation and relief.

My comment: LOL. “indiscriminate use of air defense systems threatens air navigation and relief”???? Air defense systems will threaten “air navigation” of fighter jets only; labeling throwing bombs as “relief” even is worse tthan Orwellian language.

(A K pS)

Coalition airstrikes hit Houthi targets in al-Jawf

The Arab Coalition launched on Monday night, a series of air strikes targeting the Iran-backed Houthi militia in al-Jawf governorate, northeast Yemen.
Local sources said that the Coalition air raids hit a number of military positions under the control of the pro-Iran militants in the east of al-Hazm district, inflicting heavy human an material losses in their ranks.

(* B K pH)

Hostile escalation on Marib causes displacement of thousandThe escalation of the US-Saudi-led aggression's airstrikes on Marib province has led to the displacement of thousands of civilians and the damage to the public and private properties.

The Supreme Council for the Management and Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (SCHA) - Marib Branch - condemned on Friday such escalation that causes serious repercussions.

More than 1,500 air raids on Marib have been registered for the past three months. They have left massive destruction of service projects, public facilities and private properties.

The intensive airstrikes also increased the suffering of thousands of civilians, the Council said in a statement received by Saba, which showed that over 5,000 families have fled from their

and also

(A K pH)

More Saudi coalition air raids Several prov. Marib p. Marib p., Jawf p. Several prov. Marib p. Several prov. Saada p. Marib p.

cp17 Kriegsereignisse / Theater of War

Siehe / Look at cp18

Im Jemen herrscht ein militärisches Patt. Eine größere offensive mit größeren Erfolgen und Geländegewinnen für eine Seite bleiben seit der Offensive der saudischen Koalition gegen Hodeidah im Jahr 2018 aus. Kleinere Offensiven, ständige gegenseitige Angriffe und Gefechte mit Toten auf beiden Seiten und Opfern unter der Zivilbevölkerung gibt es aber ständig. Besonders betroffen sind die Provinzen Hodeidah, Taiz, Al Bayda, Al Dhalea, der Bezirk Nehm in der Provinz Sanaa, die Provinzen Al Jawf, Marib, Hajjah und Saada.

There is a military stalemate in Yemen. A larger offensive with greater successes and territorial gains for one side has been absent since the Saudi coalition's offensive against Hodeidah in 2018. Smaller offensives, constant mutual attacks and skirmishes killing fighters of both sides and causing victims among the civilian population are constant. The provinces of Hodeidah, Taiz, Al Bayda, Al Dhalea, the district of Nehm in the province of Sanaa, the provinces of Al Jawf, Marib, Hajjah and Saada are particularly affected.

(A K pS)

Yemen [Hadi gov.] says its troops made key wins against Houthis in Marib, Nihm

Yemen's official government on Tuesday said its troops made key wins against the Houthi group in many fronts of Nihm, east Sana'a, and in the northeastern governorate of Marib.
The Houthi group suffered heavy losses in lives and ordnance in clashes with the government troops and tribesmen during the last hours that saw raids by the Arab coalition in Makhdarah west Marib, the government-run reported.

(A K pS)

Citizen’s House destroyed by Houthi militia shelling western Taiz

(A K pS)

583 Houthis killed, including 136 leaders, since early running November

At least 583 Houthi militants, including some 136 leaders, have been killed since early running November until Tuesday (November 17th), according to the Monitoring Group of the news site September Net, the mouthpiece of the Yemeni armed forces.

(A K pH)

Aggression's artillery kills woman in Sa'ada

A woman was killed on Sunday by an artillery shelling of the Saudi-led aggression coalition on Sa'ada province, a security official told Saba.

The artillery attack hit AL Abdal area of Qataber district, also left a man and a women wounded, the official said

and also

(A K pS)

KSrelief Masam Project Dismantle 1,391 Mines in Yemen During Second Week of November

King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSrelief) Masam Project to demining Yemeni lands, managed to dismantle 1,391 mines, during the second week of November 2020, including 36 anti-personnel mines, 198 anti-tank mines, 1,155 unexploded ordnance, and two explosive devices.
The total of what has been dismantled since the beginning of the Masam Project has reached 197,982 mines that were planted by the Iran-backed Houthi militia in Yemen and tried to hide them in different shape

(A K pS)

Houthi shelling kills two people in Taiz

Two civilians are reported to have been killed and two other injured by mortar's round fired by the theocratic Houthi militia's militants on Saturday evening in the city of Taiz.
Local official official told the Yemeni News Agency (Saba) the Houthi militia men targeted the freedom square in the down town of Taiz with mortar's rounds.
The Houthis' shelling resulted in killing Taha Abdurahman Salim and Abdu Yassin Mohammed. Meanwhile the two brothers Amar and Mohmamed Qa'ed were critically wounded and moved to hospital for medication.


(A K pS)

4 civilians killed, injured by Houthi militia shelling in Taiz

and also



(A K)

[Hadi] #Yemeni govt forces still control Mass camp and battles raging a few km away from it. #Houthis trying hard to capture the camp for over 2 weeks, but have so far failed.

(A K)

Clashes intensify, expand in north Yemen's Taiz city

(A K)

Fighting flares up in east of Yemen's capital


(A K pS)

30 Houthi militants killed east of Sana’a

(A K pS)

Coalition removes 157 Houthi naval mines from Red Sea

The Arab Coalition has removed a naval mine placed in the south of the Red Sea by Iran-backed Houthis on Saturday.
The coalition said that 157 naval mines that have been randomly deployed by the Iran-backed Houthis, the mines have been discovered and removed. The coalition added that the Houthi militia continues to threaten maritime navigation and global trade in the Bab al-Mandab strait and the southern Red Sea.

cp18 Kampf um Hodeidah / Hodeidah battle

Seit dem Abkommen von Stockholm vom 13. Dezember 2018 gibt es einen Waffenstillstand für Hodeidah. Zwar bleiben größere Offensiven aus, kleinere Gefechte gibt es aber laufend, und beide Seiten werfen sich ständig Verstöße gegen den Waffenstillstand vor.

Since the Stockholm Agreement of December 13, 2018, a ceasefire has been in place for Hodeidah. There are no major offensives, but smaller battles are going on and both sides constantly are accusing each other of violating the ceasefire.

(A K pS)

Film: A new Houthi bombing destroys civilian homes in the Mazhar neighborhood, south of Hodeidah

(A K pS)

Farmer injured by Houthi bullet in Hodeidah


(A K P)

Yemeni joint forces, Houthis trade blames for breaching Sweden pact

(A K pH)

Daily violations

Nov. 17:

Nov. 16:

Nov. 15:

Nov. 14:

cp19 Sonstiges / Other

(A P)

Tawakkol Karman's criticism of Ibn Baz's fatwa sparks controversy

Yemeni Nobel Peace Prize-winner Tawakkol Karman attacked the former Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia, Abdul Aziz Ibn Baz, who claimed that the earth does not rotate, sparking controversy among social media activists.

Karman posted a video and commented: "In this video, Abdulaziz says that the earth does not rotate or swim in space, and whoever believes otherwise is a communist or a Christian!"

The Saudi Prince, Abdulrahman Bin Musaid, responded with a series of tweets in which he said: "The sheikh's fatwa, which I have shown you, is clear, but you insist on twisting it as you wish."

(A K)

With a Paint Brush, Heba Yahya Documents the Scourge of Houthi Militias' Atrocities in Taiz.

Heba Yahya, a fine artist, resorted to drawing to reflect her agony and distress over Houthi militias' atrocities in Taiz. In her besieged city, Heba decorated her house with paintings of the historical landmarks that went rack and ruin following Houthi militias strikes.


Yemeni [Hadi gov.] coastguard seizes 7 foreign sailors, 730-kg drugs off Mahara [South-east Yemen]

The Yemeni coastguard forces have foiled an attempted trafficking of 730 kilograms of drugs and captured 7 foreign sailors on a ship travelling off the eastern governorate of Mahara, security source said Saturday.
In coordination with security bodies and the Saudi-led coalition forces in Mahara, the coastguard "seized a smuggling ship, with 6 Iranian and one Pakistani sailors onboard," the source added in a statement.
The ship along with 730 kilograms of narcotic stuff inside was captured off Ghaidha city, Mahara provincial capital, the source said, before the boat was taken to the nearby port city of Nashtoon.


Phantoms, Ruins, and Reflections: Contemporary Art from Yemen

The exhibition, Phantoms, Ruins, and Reflections: Contemporary Art from Yemen, is a compilation of contemporary artworks featuring Yemeni artists across generations. Utilizing different mediums, the exhibit seeks to challenge what it means to create artwork in and from a state of conflict. The show features Hakim Alakel, Alia Ali, Obeid Salem, Ziryab Al-Ghabri, and Sarah Al-Aulaqi.

Yemen's collective memory serves as a ripe point of departure to address complex issues of identity, the global survival of humanism, and the personal toll of war. Throughout the exhibition, humanising concepts of love and war, inherited culture and occupation, extant and extinct bodies are juxtaposed to transcend the artists’ work from the personal to the collective. For Yemen, the contemporary is still very much steeped in deep tradition and the artists included employ a range of references and materials that speak to their traditional Yemeni culture whilst addressing a contemporary culture at large.

The second exhibition features a group of artists, starting with rising talent Yemeni-Bosnian artist and activist Alia Ali. In her exhibition Borderland, Ali confronts traditional definitions of inherited culture and identity politics. Set to a dark background, her photography of costume and heritage speaks directly to the artworks of Yemeni-Omani artist Sarah al-Aulaqi, in Pursuit of Healing. Al-Aulaqi uses thread and fabric to commemorate edifices demolished by armed violence. To pay homage to the past, Al-Aulaqi adds folk methods of protection to what once was.

(A K P)

Film: Experts Warn Aden's Disastrous Environmental Reality

In the International Day for Preventing the Exploitation of The Environment in War, experts illustrated that the environment pays the highest price for bombing explosive devices and using chemical substances. This came during a forum on Aden's disastrous environmental reality in the aftermath of the 2015 war, held by Ruaa Center for Strategic Studies, Consultancy and Training with the participation of UNESCO. During which, UNESCO representative reiterated that the environment is a war victim that is no different from casualties and material loss.

(* B P)

The chemistry of rumor in Yemen: news and war… the news in the war

The news reality in Yemen - or for the Yemenis in general - has become organized with news bubbles that impose a rhythm for people to receive events occurring on Yemenis inside and outside Yemen. This bubble is forming within the news space and derives its soul from its essence. The time in the media, which is in contrast to the judicial time - where there is no conviction except with the confirmation of a charge after investigation and pleading - is characterized by acceleration and intensification, transmission of the news and comment on it, and then moving to another new news. A journalist’s assessment of the importance of an event differs from others according to many data, including the event’s association with a specific political time. Here politics enters as another, not so easy factor.

In countries that live in wars and civil conflicts, the challenges facing the press increase in order not to fall into the circles of local and regional polarization and to maintain the standards of the profession within the framework of the constraints of profitability and the tremendous technical progress.

The technological advancements in the world of communication have made every recipient a source of news and a creator of media content. Whereas in the past, people received news in markets and gathering places, which were relatively limited spaces. Now cyberspace has become an open market for every commodity.

This progress, to the extent that it raised the status of the media industry in terms of technical capabilities, made it in a race to stay on top or perhaps alive as some press institutions close their paper section in favor of the electronic section. Perhaps the front page of the American Express, affiliated with the Washington Post, was an example of this desperate situation when it wrote “ Express Wish You Enjoy Your Smelly Phones, ” announcing that its hard copy was halted in September last year.

As for Yemen, which we choose as a spatial framework for the topic of our article, the press has been dealt a painful blow. Simply because it is the goal of every seeker to power and dominance. It is the easiest that can be undermined. Local and international reports on the reality of the press in Yemen indicate the tragic situation, the multiplicity of violations and their seriousness that journalists are exposed to [2] .

The issue is not limited to infringing on this or that newspaper, but rather it affects journalistic ethics and the very concept of news-making. The news in times of war is dominated by propaganda and rumor. Because it does not result from the process of preparing a journalist that maintains the standards, constraints and ethical obligations of the profession. Instead of providing news, the recipient finds himself in front of crowds of fake news that worsen the more institutions are absent.

All these rumors are not without a purpose behind spreading and promoting them, especially in the security environment in which Yemen is living. This news is often used politically to undermine and confuse the opponent and create confusion. News directed at the war and through its media becomes a mixture of propaganda, counter-propaganda and lies.

In this article, we will analyze the presence of the rumor in the general context of Yemen, the factors that provided a favorable environment for its spread, and the location of the journalistic work on this issue.

Vorige / Previous:

Jemenkrieg-Mosaik 1-693 / Yemen War Mosaic 1-693: oder / or

Der saudische Luftkrieg im Bild / Saudi aerial war images:

(18 +, Nichts für Sensible!) / (18 +; Graphic!)

Liste aller Luftangriffe / and list of all air raids:

Untersuchung ausgewählter Luftangriffe durch Bellingcat / Bellingcat investigations of selected air raids:

Untersuchungen von Angriffen, hunderte von Filmen / Investigations of attacks, hundreds of films:

21:30 18.11.2020
Dieser Beitrag gibt die Meinung des Autors wieder, nicht notwendigerweise die der Redaktion des Freitag.
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Dietrich Klose

Vielfältig interessiert am aktuellen Geschehen, zur Zeit besonders: Ukraine, Russland, Jemen, Rolle der USA, Neoliberalismus, Ausbeutung der 3. Welt
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Dietrich Klose