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article imageOp-Ed: US House votes to end US involvement in Yemen war

By Ken Hanly     Apr 4, 2019 in Politics
The US House of Representatives voted Thursday and passed SJ Res 7 the Senate version of the War Powers Act challenge to US involvement in the war in Yemen. First, the House voted down a Republican motion to recommit to the war.
The vote
The vote was 247 for, 175 against and 1 abstention. 16 Republicans broke with their party and voted for the bill. All the Democrats supported it. The vote was mostly along party lines. The War Powers Act makes it mandatory that any US war should be approved by the US Congress.
Senate passed the bill in March
A March article reports: "Despite a Republican majority, the resolution passed 54-46. It will now go to the House of Representatives, where it’s very likely to pass, as Democrats control the chamber. That means Trump will have to veto the measure to be able to continue US support in the conflict." The resolution notes that Congress has not authorized US involvement in Yemen.
Trump has threatened to veto the bill so far and at present it appears unlikely that Congress could overcome his veto with the Senate still controlled by Republicans. Trump has sometimes complained about US military involvements around the world. However, there are hawks in his administration such as John Bolton who often seem to control his actions. As a result Trump sometimes takes contradictory positions and dovish moves such as his planned withdrawal from Syria are often foiled or modified by hawks.
Trump administration argues US is not involved in a war in Yemen
Trump's administration argues that the four years the US has been involved in Yemen is not technically a war. Other times the government has argued that they are obligated to support the Saudi war because of arms sales to them. Many think that the arms should not have been sold in the first place. Many in the US oppose Saudi Arabia not only because of the brutal Yemen war but also because of its human rights record and murder of the journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
A previous vote in the House this year was derailed by an amendment on anti-Semitism which led to the House adopting the Senate version.
The Yemeni civil war
A Wikipedia article describes the war in part as follows: According to the UN and other sources, from March 2015 to December 2017, 8,670–13,600 people were killed in Yemen, including more than 5,200 civilians, as well as estimates of more than 50,000 dead as a result of an ongoing famine due to the war.[119][130][131] The conflict has widely been seen as an extension of the Iran-Saudi Arabia proxy conflict and as a means to combat Iranian influence in the region.[132][133] In 2018, the United Nations warned that 13 million Yemeni civilians face starvation in what it says could become "the worst famine in the world in 100 years."[134]
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of DigitalJournal.com
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