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The Vivid Dangers of Our Indifference to Yemen Conflict

Fars News Agency – The world community continues to ignore the ongoing US-backed, Saudi-led war on Yemen and that’s the most morally wrong thing the world could do. Basically, if the United Nations doesn’t act to end the pointless conflict, then no other world body can act, and the more international bodies actively do nothing, the worse the humanitarian situation is going to be in the poorest country in the Arab world.

YemenA healthy world isn’t one that basks in ignorance and indifference, that glorifies those who avoid taking a stand against regime-change wars and occupation, and fosters the gaping black-hole of absence of international law. Many UN member states are shamelessly making the choice to ignore the war and do nothing. This business-as-usual mentality as a whole is one where many believe that accommodating themselves to rife injustice is a way to look after themselves. But in fact, adjusting to injustice is unhealthy for both the UN and the member states.

Sadly, those who have power are taking the lead in doing nothing – even taking a direct role in the conflict. And those who have no power struggle to unite to end the war. Member states have met repeatedly to discuss ways to end the conflict, but failed to do anything. A big part of that is that those who have economic and political power are governing for themselves and their allies, rather than for humanity.

Here, ending the war is someone else’s responsibility, and while the UN Security Council members are inactive, so are the rest of the UN agencies, such as the Human Rights Council. The daunting abyss between what is wrong with the Council and what its officials think they are able to do about it, is a result of the economic and political pressures by certain member states not allowing even measly scraps of power to trickle down to a resolution that could possibly stop the conflict and hold to account those who started this whole mess in the first place. Encumbered with powerful American-Saudi-Israeli lobbies, the Human Rights Council puts up with injustice because it believes that something better isn’t possible and that it is powerless.

At the same time, the prevailing mentality at the Security Council is that the Middle East is there for the US and its allies to invade, to be occupied, and to be used (take its energy). The culture of indifference negates the idea that the world is in fact Council’s business and it should have a mutual relationship with both its permanent members and with those people who help ensure international peace and security. Instead, there is a sense of entitlement, especially to veto any resolution that dares to confront them.

It is this kind of mentality and injustice that has normalized suffering, death and destruction in Yemen. In consequence, humanitarian crisis has become natural phenomenon. Unlike an earthquake which surprises unlucky victims and is framed as a tragedy by the Western media, the suffering, the death and the hunger of millions of people in the besieged country, particularly in the port city of Hodeidah, is not a tragedy. Instead, it is seen as something that is basically deserved and normal for in the end “there is freedom and democracy to be had.” Ironically, it is the US-backed, Saudi-led airstrikes targeting the defenseless civilians that is right and there is little the UN can do about it, whereas targeting the civilian population is not right. It is a conscious murderous policy.

This should be overwhelming:

– The fate of millions of Yemeni civilians is up in the air amid the Saudi-led invasion of the nation’s main aid port, Hodeidah. Fighting is now a more immediate threat to the civilians living in the city itself. Hodeidah is held by the Ansarullah (Houthi) resistance fighters, and subsequently the lone source of food and medical aid for 8.4 million people living in pro-Ansarullah northern Yemen. The UN has warned the fall of the city could precipitate a famine, and has been in talks trying to prevent this invasion, but only talks and no action.

– The International Rescue Committee has dismissed Saudi coalition “relief” plan for Yemen as a public relations gimmick. The “relief” plan announced by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates to protect civilians living in Hodeidah as they attack the port city is a publicity stunt by the Saudi-led coalition meant to draw attention away from the undue suffering the attack is causing. Attacking Hodeidah won’t bring Yemen’s population relief, nor will seizing the port.

Here, the severe absence of action by the UN is dangerous both to those directly affected by the Saudi-made tragedy and famine, as well as to those who are supporting it, mainly the United States, Britain and France. The biggest, most obvious consequence is that many more civilians will die and the West can and will be held to account for its complicity.

The disturbing truth is this: The US and its European partners are accountable for much of the mayhem. They may wish to omit that part of the debate altogether, but facts will not simply disappear when ignored. Western leaders should honestly confront the question: what are the reasons for their support of a conflict that has only destroyed the lives of millions of people?

The entire West has a responsibility to stop this mayhem – in collaboration with the UN. It’s partly due to their shameless actions – and inactions – that people are suffering. The US, Britain and France tell the UN they are far away and not responsible, but they are all taking part in the fighting. They are all part of the problem.

Until this fact is recognized by Western governments, until the UN does something about it, this man-made humanitarian crisis, this forgotten conflict will continue, raising regional tensions and contributing to the tragic loss of lives of many more people, whose only hope is merely to survive.

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