US Ally, Saudi Arabia, Is Using Child Mercenaries to Fight in Yemen

Child soldier from Africa, Wiki
image_pdfimage_print
Saudi Arabia, allied with the US and United Arab Emirates, is using child mercenary soldiers from Sudan to fight its war in Yemen, claiming that they are battling to rescue Yemen from the Houthis who the Saudis say are backed by Iran.

The Saudis entered Yemen in early 2015 and subsidized 14,000 Sudanese mercenaries to fight, often on the front lines, receiving commands remotely by radio, in places UAE officers do not dare to go. People in Sudan struggle for survival, and males, including children, are paid to fight as mercenaries. Some humanitarian organization estimates now put the total civilian death toll in Yemen at over 70,000.

Over a year ago we reported on the fact that the Saudi-US-UAE coalition in Yemen has been increasingly reliant on foreign mercenaries, including even officers, from Sudan to execute its three-year long ground war against Shia Houthi rebels as coalition jets pounded urban areas from the skies. As this was long before the brutal Jamal Khashoggi killing at the hands of the Saudis, we were among a tiny handful that bothered to cover it — aside from a few Middle East outlets — significantly before western mainstream media suddenly “discovered” the tragedy unfolding in Yemen, a Saudi-driven conflict the UN has belatedly called “the world’s worst humanitarian crisis”.

But Khashoggi’s death and crown prince MbS’ new pariah status means The New York Times, The Washington Post, CNN, and others have finally decided to spotlight Yemen and dig into inconvenient truths of the war at a moment the United States has pledged to greatly lessen its role and as the US Senate is scrutinizing American involvement, including the Pentagon’s recently halting its aerial refueling program to Saudi-UAE jets. What does the latest NYT coverage find? The Saudi coalition — made up of America’s closest Middle East allies  is sending child mercenaries from Darfur to the front lines of the Yemen war.

Human Rights Watch: “The Saudi Arabia government has been outsourcing the ground war in Yemen to Sudanese men and boys from Darfur.” Image via Tasnim.

According to the Times report:

Led by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the Saudis say they are battling to rescue Yemen from a hostile faction backed by Iran. But to do it, the Saudis have used their vast oil wealth to outsource the war, mainly by hiring what Sudanese soldiers say are tens of thousands of desperate survivors of the conflict in Darfur to fight, many of them children.

At any given time throughout the past almost four years of war (the Saudis entered Yemen in early 2015), some 14,000 Sudanese mercenaries have been fighting alongside pro-Saudi forces, often on the front lines in places their UAE officers won’t dare to go.

For families in war-torn Sudan, the Saudis’ deep pockets and lucrative payment offers to send their young to fight in Yemen has proven irresistible given no other means of survival, according to the story of one such family:

Then, around the end of 2016, Saudi Arabia offered a lifeline: The kingdom would pay as much as $10,000 if Hager joined its forces fighting 1,200 miles away in Yemen.

Hager, 14 at the time, could not find Yemen on a map, and his mother was appalled. He had survived one horrific civil war — how could his parents toss him into another? But the family overruled her.

“Families know that the only way their lives will change is if their sons join the war and bring them back money,” Hager said in an interview last week in the capital, Khartoum, a few days after his 16th birthday.

Noticeably, unlike all prior scant reporting on Yemen, the New York Times actually features Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s name front and center as responsible for such evils and injustice.

Most Americans might be forgiven for having no clue what the war in Yemen actually looks like, especially as Western media has spent at least the first three years of the conflict completely ignoring the mass atrocities taking place while white-washing the Saudi coalition’s crimes. Unlike wars in Iraq, Libya, and Syria, which received near daily coverage as they were at their most intense, and in which many Americans could at least visualize the battlefield and the actors involved through endless photographs and video from on the ground, Yemen’s war has largely been a faceless and nameless conflict as far as major media is concerned.

Aside from mainstream media endlessly demonstrating its collective ignorance of Middle East dynamics, it is also no secret that the oil and gas monarchies allied to the West are rarely subject to media scrutiny or criticism, something infamously demonstrated on an obscene and frighteningly absurd level with Thomas Friedman’s prior fawning and hagiographic interview with Saudi MbS published in the Times.

Read full article here…

 

Related Post

Visit our Classified ads.

Check out our Classified ads at the bottom of this page.

Recent stories & commentary

Freedom

Michigan Passes Law Against Cyberbullying

January 16, 2019 Metro Times 0

Some critics have argued that the definitions of cyberbullying are not as clear cut as they may sound and that clever attorneys could interpret them in such a way as to violate the First Amendment or to imprison someone for merely hurting others’ feelings.

Classifieds

For classified advertising rates and terms, click here. The appearance of ads on this site does not signify endorsement by the publisher. We do not attempt to verify the accuracy of statements made therein or vouch for the integrity of advertisers. However, we will investigate complaints from readers and remove any message we find to be misleading or that promotes anything fraudulent, illegal, or unethical.

For Sale

Ten Days at Jekyll Island, a novel by Patrea Patrick, tells the true story of a secret meeting held in November of 1910 on a privately owned resort island, the outcome of which drastically changed the world. It was at this meeting that a banking cartel was forged; a cartel that, three years later, would be issued a government charter to do business as The United States Federal Reserve System. You will discover why secrecy was essential. Based on historical documentation from The Creature from Jekyll Island by G. Edward Griffin. (More)

 


Offline is a documentary on the inevitability of the Earth being slammed by a mega solar flare – not the common type that interrupts communications and creates a light show in the Northern skies – but the big brothers thousands of times more powerful. These monsters deliver enough energy to blow apart the master transformers that supply the planet’s energy grids. When that happens, the lights go out for longer than anyone wants to think about. These X-Class solar storms hit the Earth every 150 years, on average. The last one arrived 156 years ago. We are overdue (More)

 


Titanic: A Perfect Crime, a novel by Patrea Patrick, explores little known facts of that famous tragedy and provides jaw-dropping insights to new discoveries that came with the finding of the 100-year-old ship wreck. The book’s scenario of what really happened that fateful night is amazingly consistent with the historical record. No other theory explains so many parts of the mystery. (More)

 

 

 


Leave a Reply

avatar
  Subscribe  
Notify of