mars-globe-valles-marineris-enhanced-br2

After We Help the Saudis Commit More War Crimes We’re Going to Mars!

mars-globe-valles-marineris-enhanced-br2This afternoon, the Senate had a debate on Chris Murphy and Rand Paul’s resolution to halt the sale of $1.5 billion in arms to the Saudis to use on their invasion of Yemen.

The debate was repulsive.

The opponents of the measure — led by Mitch McConnell, John McCain, and Lindsey Graham — had little to say about the well-being of Yemenis.

Lindsey even shrugged off both Saudi support for terrorism.

[shrugs] They have double dealing in the past of helping terrorist organizations.

And Saudi bombing of civilians.

They have dropped bombs on civilians. There’s no way to wage war without [shrugs again] mistakes being made.

But we had to help the Saudis kill Yemeni civilians, Lindsey argued, because Iran humiliated American sailors who entered Iranian waters, purportedly because of navigation errors.

That argument — one which expressed no interest in the well-being of Yemenis but instead pitched this as a battle for hegemony in the Middle East — held the day. By a vote of 71-27, the Senate voted to table the resolution.

If your Senators voted against tabling this amendment, please call to thank them:

Baldwin (D-WI)
Blumenthal (D-CT)
Booker (D-NJ)
Boxer (D-CA)
Cantwell (D-WA)
Durbin (D-IL)
Franken (D-MN)
Gillibrand (D-NY)
Heinrich (D-NM)
Heller (R-NV)
Hirono (D-HI)
Kirk (R-IL)
Klobuchar (D-MN)
Leahy (D-VT)
Lee (R-UT)
Markey (D-MA)
Murphy (D-CT)
Murray (D-WA)
Paul (R-KY)
Reid (D-NV)
Sanders (I-VT)
Schatz (D-HI)
Stabenow (D-MI)
Tester (D-MT)
Udall (D-NM)
Warren (D-MA)
Wyden (D-OR)

The creepiest thing, however, came just after the vote. Bill Nelson (D-Mission to Space) got up, not just to do a victory lap that the US would continue to support Saudi war crimes. But he also announced a resolution passed earlier, which funds NASA to send humans to Mars by 2030, with an eye to colonizing the red planet.

It was as if he was saying that proliferating arms and war crimes on this globe won’t matter so much because we can just go colonize another.

Marcy has been blogging full time since 2007. She’s known for her live-blogging of the Scooter Libby trial, her discovery of the number of times Khalid Sheikh Mohammed was waterboarded, and generally for her weedy analysis of document dumps.

Marcy Wheeler is an independent journalist writing about national security and civil liberties. She writes as emptywheel at her eponymous blog, publishes at outlets including the Guardian, Salon, and the Progressive, and appears frequently on television and radio. She is the author of Anatomy of Deceit, a primer on the CIA leak investigation, and liveblogged the Scooter Libby trial.

Marcy has a PhD from the University of Michigan, where she researched the “feuilleton,” a short conversational newspaper form that has proven important in times of heightened censorship. Before and after her time in academics, Marcy provided documentation consulting for corporations in the auto, tech, and energy industries. She lives with her spouse and dog in Grand Rapids, MI.

4 replies
  1. P J Evans says:

    I don’t think Nelson has a clue how hard it is to get anything to Mars, let alone a colony. It’s certainly not going to get done in  the next 15 years, with the house being controlled by know-nothings.

  2. wayoutwest says:

    These safe symbolic votes have little meaning and if any one of these senators had the deciding vote on this sale I doubt they would offend their powerful backers with a no vote especially if it caused layoffs in the MIC in their state.

    The Saudis are targeting civilians in Yemen just as the Russians are targeting them in Syria because it is impossible to separate the rebels from their supporters or anyone else in these dense urban war zones and this tactic does drive a wedge between the militants and the civilians.

    Ansar Allah started this war based on real legitimate grievances but when they rejected a power sharing deal and moved to  conquer the whole country the Saudis had to intervene because they can not tolerate a Yemeni Hezbollah minority ruling the country on their frontier.

    Ansar Allah has no legitimate claim to rule the whole of Yemen especially with the aid of the former autocrat  Saleh and while the Hadi government may be less than ideal they are the recognized government of Yemen.  The sides seem too fixed into their positions for a diplomatic solution any time soon so the war and killing will continue and the US will continue to sell arms to its best customer who is training and combat hardening its Arab Intervention Force.

  3. martin says:

    If I had one wish granted by the God of Universal Sanity, it would be to shove the faces of those scum sucking maggots, Lindsey Grahmm and Mitch McConnel,  in a pool of a innocent Yemeni child’s blood …till they choke to death.  However, I’d accept a compromise to let me spit in their vomit inducing face, notwithstanding slapping them silly.

    btw, I always wondered what that primitive wheel logo of “emptywheel” meant. Now..it’s reduced to a modern version of contemporary “graphics” whereby it represents nothing but a big fat ZERO. So much for progress.

  4. martin says:

    Hmmm.. I see one of my Senators, Debbie Stabenow, voted with those other Senators in the list,  to stop this abomination. Will wonders ever cease.  I’ll  thank her.  As for Gary Peters. I’ll offer my prayers for the eternal damnation of his wretched piece of shit soul.

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