Originally appeared on The American Conservative.
Updated below: Reports now say 33-40 killed.
The latest Saudi coalition atrocity against Yemeni civilians was another attack on a wedding party, killing 20 people including the bride and wounding dozens more:
At least 20 people including the bride were killed when an air strike by the Saudi-led coalition hit a wedding party in northern Yemen, health officials have said.
The dead were mostly women and children gathered in a tent set up for the wedding in the Bani Qayis district, according to Khaled al-Nadhri, the leading health official in the north-western Hajjah province.
Hospital chief Mohammed al-Sawmali said the groom and 45 other wounded people were brought to the local al-Jomhouri hospital.
Thirty of those injured were reported to be children, with some in critical condition having suffered severed limbs and shrapnel wounds.
There is no excuse for blowing up a wedding party. There is clearly no military purpose served by attacking these people, and most of the dead and wounded are women and children. The death toll will very likely increase due to the severity of some of the injuries. This is a clear violation of international law, and unfortunately it is just one of thousands like it over the last three years. Other weddings in Yemen have been similarly turned into the sites of Saudi coalition massacres during this war. This is far from the first time this has happened, and unless the Saudi-led war on Yemen is ended it won’t be the last.
The Saudi coalition keeps carrying out these attacks with no regard for the lives of civilians, and our government continues to arm and refuel their planes as they do it. The Saudis and their allies know they can act with complete impunity because the U.S. keeps providing military assistance and diplomatic cover no matter what they do to Yemeni civilians. Our State Department won’t even report on the war crimes that they commit. Instead of being treated as the war criminal that he is during his visit to the U.S., Mohammed bin Salman was feted and embraced by our government, given mostly fawning media coverage, and welcomed by the biggest names in entertainment and business. The murders of these Yemeni women and children and thousands more like them are his doing, and the U.S. is responsible for enabling him and his allies to do it.
The idea that U.S. support is reducing the number of civilian casualties is impossible to take seriously when it seems undeniable that many of the coalition’s attacks on civilians are done on purpose. After three years of bombing and starving Yemen, the coalition is no closer to any of its stated goals, but it has succeeded in raining death and destruction on numerous weddings, funerals, medical clinics, markets, treatment plants, farms, schools, and homes. This is what happens when at least 30% of all coalition strikes hit civilian targets. Providing arms and refueling to the Saudi coalition guarantees that more Yemeni civilians will be killed in this way. For their sake, it is imperative that the U.S. halt its support for this war at once.
Update: The death toll is now reportedly 33 people:
Second Update: CNN confirms 33 killed, at least 41 injured by the strike.
Warning: some graphic images of the aftermath of the attack follow
Daniel Larison is a senior editor at The American Conservative, where he also keeps a solo blog. He has been published in the New York Times Book Review, Dallas Morning News, Orthodox Life, Front Porch Republic, The American Scene, and Culture11, and is a columnist for The Week. He holds a PhD in history from the University of Chicago, and resides in Dallas. Follow him on Twitter. This article is reprinted from The American Conservative with permission.