Update (11 March 2017):
The United Nations under secretary general for humanitarian affairs and emergency relief coordinator, Stephen O’Brien, once again reported that Yemen is going through the “largest humanitarian crisis in the world,” after two years of brutal US-backed Saudi war and blockade.
O’Brien said at the UN Security Council on 10 January that 18.8 million people, more than two-thirds of Yemen’s population, need aid. A staggering 7 million Yemenis are hungry and do not know where they will get their next meal — a figure that doubled since January.
The top UN official also warned the global community is “facing the largest humanitarian crisis since the creation of the United Nations,” at the end of World War II in 1945.
Original (9 January 2017):
Yemen is going through “one of the world’s worst humanitarian crises,” the United Nations once again reiterated on January 9, through the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
“People’s access to food is rapidly worsening and urgent action is needed,” added Salah Hajj Hassan, the FAO representative in Yemen. That is to say, things are getting worse, not better.
In September, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) likewise warned, “The humanitarian crisis in Yemen is one of the worst in the world.”
And even months before that, in June, the UN humanitarian coordinator for Yemen, Jamie McGoldrick, spoke of “the huge magnitude of the humanitarian crisis in Yemen.” He continued, “This is one of the worst crises in the world and is continuing to get worse.”
Some humanitarian groups even go a step further. In a report in December, the international NGO Save the Children reported that “Yemen is in the grip of the largest humanitarian catastrophe in the world.” It added, “Yemen’s children are at the heart of the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.”
Moreover, as I noted in this article, a prominent famine monitor created by the US government acknowledged in December that the US-backed war in Yemen has fueled the “largest food security emergency in the world.” And according to its analysis as well, that food security emergency is getting worse.
The Saudi war on Yemen, which could not be waged without US support, continues to destroy the poorest country in the Middle East, killing thousands of Yemenis and plunging millions more into hunger and desperation.
However, unlike wars like that in, say, Syria, Yemen gets virtually no attention in the US corporate media — yet alone in US politics, where it was not mentioned in an entire presidential campaign.
In Syria, Western enemies (the Syrian government, Russia, Iran) can be demonized; in Yemen, it is Saudi Arabia dropping the bombs — bombs made in the US and UK, with refueling provided by the US and direct assistance from the American and British militaries.
As in the classic case study Noam Chomsky and Edward Herman analyzed in Manufacturing Consent — that of the US-backed genocide carried out by Indonesia in East Timor, vis-à-vis the bloody atrocities carried out by the Khmer Rouge — one conflict gets constant attention, while the other is largely ignored.