Text of the Socialist Party leaflet on the war in Yemen handed out on Saturday’s demonstration in Dublin City Centre
As the world’s media has turned its attention on Putin’s brutal war against Ukraine, a largely forgotten but deadly war continues in Yemen. This is a war being waged by two of the richest states in the Middle East, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, against one of the poorest. An estimated 370,000 Yemeni people have been killed since the war began in 2015.
On the verge of famine
They have been killed by the relentless bombing of the Saudi regime – 100,000 have been killed by aerial bombardment. This is on top of the devastating blockade of food, fuel and medicine it has imposed on Yemen. The UN’s World Food Programme has consistently warned that the country is on the verge of famine and a humanitarian catastrophe. Already, 50% of Yemeni children suffer from malnutrition.
Saudi Arabia is ruled by a brutal, semi-feudal dictatorship that has been backed by Western Imperialism, particularly the US, over decades. They back murderous regimes like the Suadis and others in the region in order to control access their vast oil reserves. They have supplied the Saudi ruling class with the most modern weaponry – from fighter planes, tanks and bombs – which are being ruthlessly deployed against the people of Yemen.
End the arms trade to Saudi Arabia
If you want to know where the priorities of the major capitalist states lie, let the following sink in: according to the charity Oxfam, states from the G20 (made up of the world’s richest countries) have supplied Saudi Arabia with $17 billion worth of arms since 2015, three times the aid they have sent to Yemen in this same period!
This flow of arms must be stopped now. The trade union movement globally should mobilise the power of its members to ensure this happens and follow the example of dockworkers in Italy who refused to allow the transport of weapons to Saudi Arabia in early 2020.
In opposing the Houthi uprising and backing the current Yemeni government in the country’s civil war, Saudi Arabia is waging a proxy war against its regional rival, namely Iran, but it is working and poor people in Yemen who are paying a horrendous price, not unlike Ukraine. This war once again highlights why the economic, political and social order of the Middle East must be overturned by the struggle of the masses. Imperialism and the plethora of capitalist regimes that dominate the region must be brought down!
Revolutionary change needed
There needs to be a revolutionary struggle of workers, poor and oppressed people to make this a reality. The vast wealth and resources in the region must be taken out of the hands of billionaires and big business and brought into democratic public ownership. Repressive governments of the super-rich must be replaced by democratic governments of the working class and poor.
Instead of regional rivalries between various capitalist powers there must a democratic and socialist confederation of the region, where the rights of all minorities, be they religious or national, are guaranteed. This is the socialist future that we in the Socialist Party and International Socialist Alternative, the international organisation we are part of, are fighting for. If you want to join this struggle, then talk to one of our organisers today.