May 30th, 2019
By Ahmed Abdulkareem
SANA’A, YEMEN — “I struggled for 30 years to build a house and an airplane comes and destroys it in seconds,” 55-year-old Ahmed al-Sulmi al-Hubeishi told MintPress. Ahmed lost four of his children last week — Seham, Abdul Rahman, Khalid, and Waseem — when Saudi airstrikes targeted a residential neighborhood in Sana`a’s al-Ruguss district. “Now, there is nothing left — even the games that remind me of my children have been destroyed.”
During Friday’s funeral procession, mourners vowed not to allow the blood of the Yemeni victims to be wasted and that those responsible for destroying Yemen would be punished sooner or later. The mourners laid to rest the bodies of Ahmed’s four sons, as well as the two sons of the head of Yemen’s journalist syndicate, who were also killed in the attack.
“The Saudis killed my four children for no reason — may God take revenge upon them,” Ahmed said. According to the U.S.-based Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project (ACLED), a nonprofit conflict-research organization, thousands of Yemeni families like Ahmed’s have lost their loved-ones since Saudi Arabia began its war on the country in 2015. Estimates place casualties from the Saudi-led war at over 60,000 since January 2016 alone.
There is an old saying that the definition of madness is to do the same thing again and again, expecting a different result. Yet this strategy seems to underpin the Saudi-led Coalition’s approach to the war. Four years and tens of thousands of airstrikes have netted little in the way of tangible battlefield victories for the Coalition, but the staggering cost of the war in terms of both human life and treasure has done little to push the Coalition towards a peaceful solution. In the past two weeks alone, nine civilians have been killed and several others wounded after Saudi jets targeted what they claimed were drone storage facilities in Sana`a and a civilian petroleum-derivatives plant in Taiz.
So far the Coalition — armed, trained, and protected by the United States — has provided no evidence that any of these targets, which often exact a heavy civilian death toll, were legitimate military objectives. The Coalition repeatedly claims that it takes necessary precautions to minimize civilian deaths, yet still insists on calling its deadly attacks on civilians legitimate.