Tuesday, 18 October 2016

State Department Asked What Is Difference Between Yemen And Syria Bombings, Awkward Moment Follows

As we asked rhetorically yesterday, how Kerry can accuse Russia of committing war crimes in Syria with a straight face is unclear, as reports of atrocious crimes committed in Yemen continue to surface.
During a media briefing in Washington DC on Tuesday, State Department spokesperson John Kirby was asked repeatedly about whether Saudi coalition bombing of Houthi rebels in Sanaa - facilitated by US arms sales to the Gulf state - deliberately targets civilian infrastructure.

“Over the weekend there was this air strike on a funeral by the Saudi-led coalition,” Matt Lee of the Associated Press asked. “I was just wondering: does the administration see any difference between this kind of thing, and what you accuse the Russians, Syrians and the Iranians of doing in Syria, and particularly Aleppo?”
Mr Kirby struggled to answer the question, pointing out that the Kingdom has launched an investigation into how the funeral hall was hit, whereas nothing of the sort has been carried out by the Syrian or Russian governments, which he accused of deliberately causing harm to civilians.
Russia did call for an investigation into the bombing of an aid convoy near Aleppo on September 19th, which contributed to the suspension of talks on Syria between Washington and Moscow.
Mr Lee, the AP’s diplomatic correspondent, continued to hold Mr Kirby’s feet to the fire on the Yemeni issue, pressing him for an answer on how “an increasing number of Yemeni civilians are at risk and being killed by weapons that the United States has furnished to the Saudis and their coalition partners.”
“You don’t find any kind of issue with this? Because a lot of people do, including on [Capitol] Hill,” he added.
Mr Kirby said that the situation was very different in Syria and Yemen, pointing out that Iranian-supplied Houthi rockets have killed Saudi citizens in recent months.
“The Saudi-led coalition were invited in by the Yemeni government - now I know what you’re going to say, the Russians were invited by [Syrian President] Assad… but [the Saudis] are under real threat on their side of the border in that war,” he said.

But as TheAntiMedia's Darius Shahtahmasebi details, it's not just some of the better-informed US press corps that is angry at this utter hypocrisy...

[Posted at the SpookyWeather blog, October 18th, 2016.]

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