Comment Armaments for Yemen War: The pure conscience

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Comment Armaments for Yemen War

Instead of infantile simplification, it would take actual negative consequences for Saudi Arabia to stop its merciless war in Yemen.

Harsher pressure on Saudi Arabia would be more effective than halting arms exports Photo: Christina Palitzsch

What did the Social Democrats be proud of last year in the coalition agreement, when they enforced a total arms embargo on the alliance involved in the Yemen conflict? Feeling that the war was practically over – a great victory for the German peace policy.

That's how it seemed. And now a small Green Party inquiry shows that it has been returned to Saudi Arabia and its allies, who have caused one of the worst humanitarian disasters in Yemen. Another serious setback for the credibility of the governing coalition.

But before the Greens raise their finger and possibly even imagine that their participation in the government would be better, it should be remembered that arms exports to crisis areas were also common among red and green and even reached peak values. Claudia Roth, partly party leader at that time, the deliveries are embarrassing until today.

For left-wing parties, peace policy means not delivering weapons to unstable regions of the world and, as far as possible, not participating in armed conflicts at all. And of course, these considerations are not wrong, especially in a country that has been the source of the worst war crimes and genocide. But it is also an almost infantile simplification of international conflicts.

A pressure and threat scenario would be necessary

What would happen if Germany did not deliver “special SUVs” to Saudi Arabia for € 831,003? Sure, you would have a clear conscience (the equipment would get the Saudis elsewhere). But nothing changed in the war in Yemen and the tremendous plight. Because the truth is that it's not nearly enough to stop arms sales and spend more money on humanitarian aid.

Those who seriously want to end crises and conflicts need foreign policy concepts and a whole armada of mediators and diplomats specializing in crisis management. A pressure and threat scenario is needed that encompasses much more than just an arms embargo. Saudi Arabia must be confronted at all levels with the negative consequences of its merciless war in the neighboring country.

All this is complicated, expensive and not always successful. It takes effort and means political and economic risks. But it is the more honest and at the same time more realistic approach to international crises and conflicts.

the day 2

(TagToTranslate) Yemen Civil War (t) Saudi Arabia (t) Arms exports (t) Defense industry (t) Germany (t) Germany (t) Politics (t) taz (t) daily newspaper

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