Biden’s stance on Yemen draws praise

  • Congressman Jim McGovern, D-Worcester. STAFF FILE PHOTO/PAUL FRANZ

Staff Writer
Published: 2/7/2021 7:54:36 PM

NORTHAMPTON – President Joe Biden’s decision to end United States involvement in offensive operations in Yemen has drawn praise from Pioneer Valley activists and U.S. Rep. Jim McGovern.

“This war has to end,” Biden said Thursday during a visit to the U.S. State Department in Washington. “And to underscore our commitment, we’re ending all American support for offensive operations in the war in Yemen, including relevant arms sales.”

McGovern, D-Worcester, said that he has been advocating against the war for some time and described Biden’s actions as “very welcome,” while noting the administration’s plans to end arms sales to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

“This war has been a failure and has resulted in the worst humanitarian crisis in the world,” McGovern said.

In December, the United Nations estimated the war dead from the more than six-year conflict at 233,000. The multi-sided civil war has included bombing from both Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates.

Yoav Elinevsky, of Amherst, was part of a group of protesters who gathered outside McGovern’s Northampton office on Jan. 25 as part of a global day of action to stop the war.

“I think it is certainly a positive step,” Elinevsky said, of Biden’s announcement.

At the same time, Elinevsky said that he wants to see if the war will actually end along with an acknowledgment of wrongdoing from the United States.

McGovern and Elinvesky also decried the Saudi regime, which Elinvesky described as “medieval.”

“The Saudi government is one of the most vicious governments in the world,” McGovern said.

Bera Dunau can be reached at

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