by Michael Pröbsting, 10 April 2018
A famous phrase, attributed to the Greek tragic dramatist Aeschylus, goes: “In war, truth is the first casualty.“ The Saudi war of aggression against the Yemeni people and the Western hypocrisy is a prime example for this idiom.
As a socialist living in Europe I can not fail to point out the sheer hypocrisy of the Western Great Powers and their media. Just compare this: The Western media report about the war crimes committed by Assad’s army in Syria and condemn them in strong words. They do so because Assad is a close ally of Russia, a chief rival of the U.S. and European Great Powers.
However, you will rarely read about the barbaric war crimes committed by the Saudi and Emirate air force and their local allies. Since the Saudis started their aggression in March 2015, they killed at least 11,000 people, with the vast majority being innocent civilians. Meanwhile, untold millions have been displaced. Seven million Yemenis are facing famine and completely rely on food aid to survive. A fast spreading cholera epidemic is affecting at least 1 million people, including at least 600,000 children.
But where is the outcry in the Western media, where is the sharp condemnation of the Saudi regime?!
Or look at this: When the Yemeni resistance fired a few missiles against Saudi Arabia, the Western imperialist power called for meeting of the UN Security Council. Submissively, the council condemned the Houthis. The news agency Reuters reports: “The United Nations Security Council on Wednesday condemned a barrage of missile attacks against Saudi Arabia by Yemen's Houthi group and expressed grave concern at reports of violations of an U.N. arms embargo on Houthi leaders.” (Reuters, 28.3.2018, https://www.nytimes.com/reuters/2018/03/28/world/middleeast/28reuters-yemen-security-missiles-un.html)
But where are the Western Great Powers, where is the UN Security Council, when Saudi Arabia and the Emirates fires literally thousands of bombs and missiles against Sana’a and other cities?! Not a single word of condemnation!
Not only this. The Western Great Powers hardly conceal the fact that they support the Saudi war of aggression. U.S. President Trump, who could also be called “Donald Dumb”, boasts about the huge weapon deals he makes with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. U.S. and Britain openly support the aggression with intelligence and logistic.
When Mohammed bin Salman tours the Western capitals he is welcomed as a “serious, modern statesman”. The Western rulers love him because they can make good business with him, because he supports their interests in the Middle East and because he hardly conceals his support for the Zionist state. When bin Salman visited New York, he even met several right-wing Zionist organisations like AIPAC. (See e.g. https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2018/03/mbs-meets-aipac-anti-bds-leaders-visit-180329091244300.html) In an interview he openly defended the right of the Israeli settler state to exist! (https://www.reuters.com/article/us-saudi-prince-israel/saudi-crown-prince-says-israelis-have-right-to-their-own-land-idUSKCN1H91SQ) No wonder, that the Western leaders love him!
As the Saudi Crown Prince is a loyal guardian of the Western imperialist interests in the region, the U.S. and European leaders don’t create a scandal that the same man is responsible for the massacre against the Yemeni people, that he persecutes the religious minorities in Saudi Arabia and that he arrests, tortures and kills his opponents – including those in his own family! (See e.g. https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/11/world/middleeast/saudi-arabia-corruption-mohammed-bin-salman.html)
Yes, “In war, truth is the first casualty.“ But it is the responsibility of socialists and all sincere fighters for liberation to defend the truth and to lend it our voice as loud as we can!
And there are various progressive forces who speak out the truth and who oppose the Saudi war of aggression! (See e.g. https://www.thecommunists.net/worldwide/africa-and-middle-east/yemen-after-the-death-of-saleh/; https://www.thecommunists.net/worldwide/africa-and-middle-east/yemen-massacre/)
Recently, progressive activists in Spain set an example of what should be done in all countries: they managed to kick out a Saudi ship which was loading weapons for the war against Yemen. (See https://www.juancole.com/2018/04/spanish-activists-loading.html)
No, the truth can not be silenced and neither can the struggle for justice!