Palestinian writer and activist Khaled Barakat calls for action against Saudi invasion, war crimes in Yemen

Posted: May 14, 2015 by Admin in At the coalface, Democracy movements, Imperialism and anti-imperialism, Internationalism, Palestine, PFLP, Poverty & Inequality, Saudi Arabia, State repression, Turkey, United States - politics, Uprisings/insurrections/rebellions, Yemen

“What is happening today in Yemen is a complete failure of the Saudi and US plans to restore a puppet regime that serves their interests.”  – Khaled Barakat, Palestinian writer and activist.

barakat

Khaled Barakat

Addressing the role of the US in the aggression on Yemen, he says, “the US imperial strategy under Obama – as differentiated from the US imperial strategy under George W. Bush – is one that considers that Arab regimes should do the actual fighting, rather than US soldiers. Internally, Obama and the US government do not have the political support to send US soldiers to Yemen; indeed, his election was primarily based on exploiting popular sentiment against US wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

“The US strategy today is for Arab regimes to conduct the fighting themselves – but using the same F-16s, missiles, drones and technology, produced and supplied by the US, to exert their destructive force against the people of the region. Their Saudi puppets that are, armed with US weaponry, the strongest military among the Arab Gulf states will be backed completely by US technology, logistics and support, including intelligence, in order to restore their dominace – and reassert the role of Al-Qaeda and other right-wing forces in Yemen.

“The US strategy is to use Arab regimes, particularly their key allies, to destabilize Arab peoples and lives and to make it seem as if this is a conflict between ‘Sunni and Shia’ when, in reality, the vast majority of Yemenis stand against this aggression. The major forces of the resistance in Yemen are made up of revolutionary committees and include Ansar Allah as well as secular and nationalist forces.

“The Saudi regime is the most brutal, reactionary, theocratic Arab regime that aims to strip Saudis of their humanity, crush the residents of the eastern part of the country, relentlessly repress migrant laborers, not to mention the systematic oppression of Saudi women. Saudi Arabia is the type of state that the U.S. values in the region and sees as a key ally.  Today, this regime is undergoing a crisis inside the royal family, between the so-called ‘new, modern’ princes and the ‘old guard or traditional’ forces.

“The ‘new, modern’ princes viewed the Saudi role in the region as increasingly in retreat or secondary in comparison to other forces in the region. This is particularly the case in regards to Turkey, which is increasingly viewed as the leader of the so-called ‘Sunni world.’ The attack on Yemen is both a mechanism to assert Saudi dominance (but always in the interests of the U.S.) and also to prevent Yemen from exercising its independence, national sovereignty or self determination,” he said. “We must note that this is not the first time that Saudi Arabia attacked Yemen, nor is it the first time that Saudi Arabia attempted to impose a puppet government on Yemen. Saudi Arabia has forcibly occupied areas of Yemen for over 80 years, in Najran and elsewhere, which comprise 90 Yemeni cities and towns, because of their resources and value.

“Who benefits from this war of aggression?  The imperialist powers – particularly the US and Europe, which is also complicit in the face of war crimes; Israel, the Zionist project that is maintained by imperialism and was the first to support the Saudi aggresssion; their Arab local allies and reactionary regimes; and the military industrial complex whose profits are fueled by such wars.

“The US has been engaged in aggression against Yemen on an ongoing basis. Hundreds of Yemenis have been killed and injured by US drones – including US citizens.

“The coalition that Saudi Arabia assembled has begun to collapse. On the one hand, it received a major blow from Pakistan, where the Parliament voted unanimously to officially take a neutral position and refuse to send troops to participate. In response, the United Arab Emirates’ foreign minister warned of a ‘heavy price’ for this position, implying threats of deportation and targeting of Pakistani migrant workers in the Gulf, cuts to aid, and potentially, increased funding and intervention by Gulf countries to support reactionary groups inside Pakistan.

“Turkey, also, decided to take a step back. It heard a clear Iranian position from the highest Iranian political and moral authority, Khamenei himself. It is in fact in the interests of Turkey for Saudi Arabia to fail in this conflict, not because the Turkish state wants to see a successful revolution or meaningful change in Yemen, but because of the ongoing uncomfortable relationship between its allies in the Brotherhood Movement and the Saudi state, particularly in relation to Egypt.

“It must be noted that these forces are part of one camp, allied to the United States and its imperial interests in the region, but which manifest internal rivalries and competition over influence and power.

“Yemen is economically the poorest Arab country, but its people have a long and proud history of resistance to colonialism, imperialism – and Saudi domination. The Yemeni people are united and the vast majority of political forces are standing together to reject the Saudi attack, and they will not concede to bow before Saudi aggression. This aggression will fail, I am confident, and the Yemeni people will be victorious.

“But what must be recorded is the reality that war crimes are happening on a daily and hourly basis in Yemen at the hands of the Saudi regime and its US backers – the destruction of the country, its civilian infrastructure, and the targeting of refugee camps. Therefore, it is crucial for all progressive and revolutionary forces around the world to demonstrate in front of Saudi embassies demanding an immediate end to the war and aggression on Yemen and to support the self-determination of the people of Yemen.”

The above is very slightly edited, in regards to some of the punctuation, from the original article that first appeared on the site of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, here.

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Comments
  1. Karim says:

    Thanks. Really useful and updated.