SJR 54 Will Not End the War In Yemen (Statement From March On The Pentagon)
Above Photo: From Cindysheehanssoapbox.blogspot.com
The ACLU has also raised concerns about the language of the bill not being good enough to support for similar reasons as Cindy Sheehan does. Hina Shamsi, Director, ACLU National Security Project writes the bill “contains major mistakes that would actually perpetuate Saudi and American fighting and Yemeni suffering, not end them.” This has led the ACLU, which opposes the war in Yemen, to urge representatives to vote ‘no’ on the resolution. The House version wouldn’t actually end U.S. support for the Saudi-led coalition as it requires an end to US support for Saudi “hostilities,” without defining hostilities. The Trump administration, based on the Obama administration’s definition of hostilities in Yemen, is now similarly claiming that the Yemen resolution wouldn’t change anything because the U.S. support for the Saudi-led coalition isn’t “hostilities.” Further, the Yemen resolution contains an exception stating that it doesn’t apply to US use of force in Yemen if those activities are authorized by the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF), which has been used to justify the war in Afghanistan. This language actually can be used to approve US military actions in Yemen. The ACLU has written a letter to Congress that explains what could be done to stop US involvement in Yemen. KZ
As the Senate prepares to debate Senate Joint Resolution 54, March on the Pentagon encourages Americans to read the text of the resolution and consider its actual implications.
On November 28th, the Senate voted 63-37 to discuss the resolution on the Senate floor. In March, the same resolution was not approved. While November’s vote can be considered progress on the topic, the most important thing to note is that this resolution, introduced by Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT), does not call for an end to U.S. involvement in the war in Yemen and may very well only serve to pacify Americans that are only slightly aware or concerned about the issue.
The bill has been falsely lauded as a potential end to U.S. involvement in the war in Yemen. The conclusion of the bill says it all, quite plainly:
SECTION 1. REMOVAL OF UNITED STATES ARMED FORCES FROM HOSTILITIES IN THE REPUBLIC OF YEMEN THAT HAVE NOT BEEN AUTHORIZED BY CONGRESS.
Pursuant to section 1013 of the Department of State Authorization Act, Fiscal Years 1984 and 1985 (50 U.S.C. 1546a) and in accordance with the provisions of section 601(b) of the International Security Assistance and Arms Export Control Act of 1976 (Public Law 94–329; 90 Stat. 765), Congress hereby directs the President to remove United States Armed Forces from hostilities in or affecting the Republic of Yemen, except United States Armed Forces engaged in operations directed at al Qaeda or associated forces, by not later than the date that is 30 days after the date of the adoption of this joint resolution (unless the President requests and Congress authorizes a later date), and unless and until a declaration of war or specific authorization for such use of United States Armed Forces has been enacted.
We know full well what this means. “Operations directed at al Qaeda” are under the “war on terror” umbrella – the vague war on a moving target that has resulted in the ruin of entire countries and the loss of millions of innocent lives since 2001.
The situation in Yemen is the world’s worst humanitarian crisis. The best way for the United States to move forward at this point is to cease all military operations in Yemen, regardless of target, and all support for the murderous Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as well as the United Arab Emirates. This means an end to the sale of weapons used against Yemen, an end to sharing intelligence, an end to providing midair refueling assistance, etc.
The passage of SJR 54 will not stop the war in Yemen and Americans need to know the truth. If anything, it will lead to a false sense that “we” won and that significant progress is being made while the genocide continues.
March on the Pentagon rejects SJR 54 as the means to an end to the war in Yemen.