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Glenn Greenwald: Trump Seems to Be Committed to Escalating Violence in Yemen

StoryFebruary 16, 2017
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White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer has warned journalists and lawmakers against criticizing a botched raid by U.S. commandos on a Yemeni village last month that left 25 civilians and one U.S. Navy SEAL dead. The Bureau of Investigative Journalism reports the January 28 assault killed nine children under the age of 13, with five other children wounded. The attack came as the United Nations appealed for $2.1 billion in emergency aid to Yemen, warning 12 million people face the threat of famine brought on by a U.S.-supported, Saudi-led war and naval blockade.

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This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.

AMY GOODMAN: We had just lost Glenn Greenwald. We were speaking to him in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. But I think we got the connection back. Maybe he has his cellphone up to his ear. Glenn, we were just talking about what’s happening in Yemen right now and the latest news from AP that the main figure killed in last month’s U.S. raid targeting al-Qaeda was a tribal leader who was allied with the U.S./Saudi-backed president. We only have 30 seconds, but if you can summarize Yemen?

GLENN GREENWALD: I mean, what’s happened in Yemen is an absolute atrocity. It’s the poorest country in the region. The U.S. has constantly droned it. The Saudis, with U.S. and U.K. support, have bombed its civilians constantly. People are starving, including children. And the Trump administration seems to be committed to escalating the violence even worse. It’s a true tragedy, and we never talk about it in the United States.

AMY GOODMAN: And the issue that Spicer raised, that anyone who criticizes the Yemen raid owes an apology to the Navy SEAL’s family who was killed? Ten seconds.

GLENN GREENWALD: It’s a resurrection of standard U.S. rhetoric that we heard in the Bush era, that if you criticize the war, then it means you’re disrespecting the troops. And it’s extra ironic, since Trump ran on a platform of opposing the wars in Iraq and Libya, and yet he doesn’t seem to apply that same standard to himself that it means he’s disrespecting the troops.

AMY GOODMAN: That does it for the show. Glenn Greenwald, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, founding editor of The Intercept.

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