Federal Legislation Action: End Our Unauthorized War in Yemen

Background:

Yemen has experienced years of political strife that has culminated in a civil war. Saudi Arabia leads a coalition of nations fighting against a Yemeni rebel group called the Houthis.

The United States supports the Saudi-led coalition. This mainly involves providing refueling services for airstrikes, and sharing intelligence for targeting. This military support is essential to the continuation of Saudi’s air campaign that continues to target civilian areas and vital civilian infrastructure in violation of international law.

This war is terrible policy, it’s completely unconstitutional. Congress, not the President, is supposed to decide where we go to war and when (U.S. Constitution Article I, Section 8, Clause 11). As long as Congress refuses to do its job, it is complicit in this tragedy.This joint resolution, led by Senators Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and Mike Lee (R-UT), uses a procedure to force a vote on the Senate floor within ten days. If passed by both chambers of Congress, the resolution would declare the U.S. participation in the Yemen war unauthorized, and would end American support for Saudi war crimes.

Excerpt from The Atlantic story:  Somebody called me and said, ‘The Houthis have taken the Ministry of Defense.’ . . . hardly anyone noticed much of this outside of Yemen. That wasn’t unusual for the Arab region’s poorest country, which rests quietly across from Somalia on the Bab el-Mandeb Strait, astride the world’s fourth-busiest petroleum-shipping choke point.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-29319423

https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2018/02/the-war-in-yemen-and-the-making-of-a-chaos-state/551987/

ACTION:

Call Senator Maria Cantwell (253) 572-2281

Call Senator Patty Murray (253) 572-3636

Script:

Caller: Hi, I’m a constituent calling from [part of state]. I’m calling about the joint resolution introduced by Senators Lee and Sanders to end our unauthorized war in Yemen. It is essential for Senator [name] to support this resolution when it comes to the floor for a vote.

Staffer: Thank you for calling. The senator is still reviewing the language and I will relay your concerns.

Caller: Please do—Congress has never authorized this war, and evidence shows that the airstrikes the U.S. is supporting are causing a humanitarian crisis and may amount to war crimes. The chaos has allowed terror groups such as ISIS and Al Qaeda affiliates to gain more power and land. It’s time for Senator [name] to exercise Congress’ constitutional power and end this unauthorized war.

This action is from Olympia Indivisible’s weekly Call to Action. Be sure to go to their website for more on the actions, upcoming events and for their latest Research Report.  Also find them on Facebook.