Regarding a recent Gazette editorial (“Grassley, Ernst should rethink U.S. links to Saudi Arabia,” Dec. 8) and guest column (“Grassley, Ernst should cut off aid to Saudi Arabia,” Dec. 15):
We agree the ongoing Yemen war is horrible. This brutal conflict has killed thousands of people. The U.S. should support an immediate cease-fire and consider what should be done to achieve lasting peace.
The United States recently ended air-to-air refueling to the Saudi-led coalition, a move we both supported, and we continue to urge a diplomatic solution to the Yemen war.
But, the Yemen Resolution adopted by the U.S. Senate invokes the War Powers Act, which is designed to remove U.S. troops from combat. We voted against that resolution because U.S. forces are not directly engaged in hostilities in Yemen, and because there are members of the coalition in Yemen that are allies assisting in counterterrorism efforts. The Resolution also sets a dangerous precedent for limiting U.S. military activity in any part of the world.
That is why we supported Senate Joint Resolution 69, which recognizes the role of the Saudi Crown Prince in the murder of Jamal Khashoggi, admonishes Iran’s support for the Houthi rebels, acknowledges there is no statutory authority for U.S. involvement in Yemen’s civil war, supports the ending of the refueling mission, and, calls for a diplomatic end to the war in Yemen.
Peace talks between the Yemeni government and Houthi rebels are showing significant progress. We should not put these talks — and long term peace — at jeopardy for the sake of a Resolution that is more about politics than peace.
Sen. Chuck Grassley
Sen. Joni Ernst