Participants in a seminar organized by the Abaad Strategic Forum have unanimously agreed that the situation in Yemen is too complicated to be resolved by the administration of US President-elect Joe Biden. The virtual seminar, which was held under the title, "Biden's Administration and the war in Yemen," recommended that solutions should come from within Yemen.
Dr. Abdulkader Alguneid, Yemeni politician, doctor and public figure, said that the war in Yemen is a result of a political crisis, not a humanitarian one, as some circulate. “Giving food aid will neither alleviate the humanitarian tragedy nor solve the political problem,” he said. “Solving the political problem will solve the economic, social and humanitarian problems.”
He added that “the US administration will only do what works for themselves regardless of everyone else. Biden will do nothing. War in Yemen is Biden’s war, too. It was announced from the Saudi Embassy in Washington when Biden was a VP. It started with an air campaign that was run by US Satellites and a war room in Riyadh when he was a VP. This means that he knew everything about planning, consultations, and preparations that lasted for months in America to help Saudi Arabia. He was a partner in the Yemen’s war."
Alguneid expected Biden’s failure to fulfill what he vowed during the election campaign that he will change social laws in Saudi Arabia, stop the war in Yemen, lift sanctions on Iran and renegotiate with Iran about its nuclear deal, and persuade Iran to change its behavior in the region.
He said that Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif confirmed before that he would not renegotiate what
Biden will not be able to solve the Yemeni problem, and Iran captured four Arab countries without a nuclear bomb
had already been negotiated before America removes all kinds of embargoes and sanctions. Alguneid said that Zarif could get a word from former US Secretary of State John Kerry to lift sanctions on Iran and allow it to expand its influence in neighboring Arab countries, under the pretext of vital legitimate interests for Iran, in return for slowing down and reducing uranium enrichment for only ten years.
The Yemeni politician stressed that Biden's promises are no longer believable, and said, "At the time, Biden said he would place Saudi Arabia and the UAE on the negotiating table for an agreement with Iran,” he said. “But Israel says that no new US-Iranian agreement will happen without its participation in laying out its details, and it killed the father of the Iranian nuclear bomb, the physicist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, last week. Iran vows revenge while Biden makes promises that he will convince it to engage in negotiation and understanding with the countries of the region.”
Alguneid concluded with his call to stop trusting that Biden may do something regarding Yemen. He said, "The war in Yemen began with the Houthi group’s attempt to deny the legitimacy of the state, the constitution, the law, the exclusion of others, and the use of pompous slogans to cover up the true purpose of the war and the monopoly of resources.” He said that war in Yemen caused human tragedies, on which Iran and the Houthis exploit to divert the attention of the international community and distracting them from the fact that they [Iran and Houthis] are the real cause of the war.
He said that the Houthis are exploiting international relief aid, a large part of which is being used for serving the Houthi war effort and the Iranian-Houthi war in Yemen.
He said that Iran captured four Arab countries without a nuclear bomb and has expanded everywhere by stooges and militias. “Iran uses the nuclear research only as a bargaining chip with the west in exchange of accepting it as a normal country by the international community and allowing it to expand in Arab countries,” said Alguneid.
He said that Iran Revolutionary Guards have created Hizbullah in Lebanon, People Mobilization Army in Iraq, Houthis in Yemen besides sponsoring the Alawites of Bashar in Syria. “This Iran/Militias Complex have proved to be lethal and outran all their adversaries, took over four Arab countries and have appetite for more,” he said. “The militias bring to Iran what the atomic bombs can never bring. Iran’s militias are the real threat not the nuclear bomb.”
Alguneid said that Iran-Militia complex will not disappear peacefully, because it is a result of lots of work, investment and blood that has been paid for 42 years. “This will not disappear through persuasion, negotiations or deals,” he said.
He pointed out that Biden’s failure in the future will be due to contradictions with the Republicans, Trump’s supporters, the Israelis and the Saudis, as well as the “Iranian strategic patience,” which he expressed by saying, “Persian carpet weavers will manipulate the American eaters of pizza and fast food.”
He said the Yemen war is between the Iran/Militias Complex and the Yemeni people. “If there’s a clear victory of the Iran/Militia Complex, the war in Yemen will stop for some time- short or long- until Yemen rises again and sink in a new cycle of violence, chaos and destruction,” he said. “If Yemen People wins and rule of law prevail we will have real peace.”
Finally, Dr. Alguneid said that peace in Yemen will be achieved only when forces and weapons are not used to monopolize power and resources, and when Yemen remains a unified country under the law and the constitution, indicating that no foreign power is interested in this goal.
Nadwa Al-Dawsari, Yemen and Gulf NR-Scholar and US Middle East policy expert, believes that “there won’t be much changes of Biden’s foreign policy towards Yemen’s conflict because he faces huge challenges such as Covid 19, and re-engaging the US allies in the region after four years of Trump’s foreign policy that isolated America. “Thus, the Yemeni issue will be less to the new administration than before,” she said.
“Moreover, the new American administration will continue to see Yemen from the lens of Saudi- Iran conflict and Saudi Arabia will continue as an important ally to the United State in the region,” Dawsari
The US administration will continue to see Yemen from the lens of Saudi- Iran conflict
said. “Hence, the Biden administration will continue to deal with Yemen through the Saudis.”
She said that the Biden administration will rely on the UAE to deal with counterterrorism in Yemen “because there are not government and security forces in the country and the USA needs allies to counterterrorism.”
She said, “The Trump administration had provided Saudi Arabia and UAE with unconditional support; however, Biden will provide them with conditional support.”
She added that the Biden administration won’t pressure Saudi Arabia to leave Yemen, and Biden will push to a political settlement between the Yemeni government and Houthis, and he will support the UN mediation.
“The Political solution will harm Yemenis because it won’t address the causes of the war and the root of the problem as well as the grievance that created over the last years of the war,” according to Nadwa.
Elana DeLozier, a researcher at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, agreed with Nadwa’s comments that the US government tended to see Yemen from the lens of Saudi- Iran conflict and it focuses on counterterrorism.
Elana said, “There is a real national security for the united State in Yemen. Thus, there are many issues such as Al-Qaida issue, the red sea and the southern issue as well. Of course, Saudi Arabia is a partner with US.”
Elana said that the US plan to designate the Houthis as a terrorist group will have implications on the economic situation. If the US designates Houthis as a terrorist organization, the trade, traders and the economic sector in Yemen will be affected by this decision,” she said.
“Maybe the Trump administration will designate Houthis as a terrorist group or maybe be not. There are two options on the table: to designate individuals in particular or the group of al-Houthi in general,” said Elana.
Talking on the role of regional countries in solving the Yemeni war, Elana said, “The regional powers can play an important role and push for a comprehensive solution. Additionally, there is another option; Yemenis can expand the circle of dialogue between other Yemeni parties.”
The Abaad Studies and Research Center launched its “Abaad Strategic Forum” for following up theYemeni issue in a virtual seminar entitled “Biden Administration and War in Yemen."
Washington's designation of the Houthis as a terrorist organization will affect the economic sector
The seminar took place on Monday, December 7th, at 8:00 pm, Yemen time, to discuss the new policy of US President-elect Joe Biden in the region and its impact on the war in Yemen.
The seminar aims at shedding light on the implications of any expected US decision to designate Yemen’s Houthi insurgents as a terrorist organization and the political and humanitarian situation in Yemen, according to Dr. Adel Dashela, the seminar's coordinator.