Operation Yemen

EDITORIAL

Daily Times

DECEMBER 27, 2021

Six years and innumerable rounds of strikes and counter-strikes later, Operation Decisive Storm is yet to establish the cherished peace it had set out in pursuit of. Yemen is still the hotspot of anarchy as it was before a Saudi coalition decided to leap into an unusually bold military venture.

There weren’t any notable strikes from the Houthi rebels for quite some time; clearing the air for potential cease-fire deliberations. But with a projectile assault on the kingdom, the wooden cork is, for the umpteenth time, jerked off the kerosene keg. At least three were reported killed in an airstrike in Yemen while the Saudis have blown the war trumpet once again. A large-scale attack is said to be underway but as of now, there’s no clear end in sight.

The Houthis–allegedly backed by Tehran–love to keep their charades alive, targeting Saudi oil fields and related infrastructure with drones. Riyadh is just as unrelenting of a fighter though its latest offers for concessions in exchange for peace do point at a change in the status quo. The fact that until recently, Saudi Arabia was basking in the glory of unsurpassable logistical support (even a carte blanche) from its greatest ally, the US cannot be made light of in studying what went wrong in Yemen.

The humanitarian tragedy is just as sordid. Tens of thousands have already been killed. Those fortunate enough to survive the strikes have been forced to start looking for greener pastures; leading to a record uptick in displacement. Just as languishing are millions facing famine and cholera in Yemen. Last week, an airstrike on Sanaa airport suspended the relief operations spearheaded by the UN. The World Food Programme has already rung alarm bells on tightening its purse strings, which would push at least eight million to starvation.

The appalling legacy of a collapsed health system and crippling economy (forcing an overwhelming 80 per cent of the population to depend on aid) would continue as an ignored afterthought because the world simply refuses to be bothered. Isn’t it high time that both coalition forces and the Houthi rebels are forced to prioritise the well-being and security of those cursed by their birth in the war-torn country?

The Biden administration might have appeased the domestic electorate by his decisive u-turn on the arms sale but his responsibility as a much-touted leader of the free world go far beyond that. A dedicated effort to help come to a lasting solution to this seemingly endless conflict should have, instead, been the crux of his crusade. Everything else is just optics! *

source https://dailytimes.com.pk/859982/operation-yemen/

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