Senator: “Bombing Yemen not self-defense”

The Red Sea crisis

Published 1 March 2024
- By Editorial Staff
Tim Kaine is critical of the way the US "war" in the Red Sea is being conducted.

During a US senate hearing this week, Minnesota senator Tim Kaine (D) argued that the US military operation in and around Yemen does not qualify as self-defense under the constitution – nor has it been authorized by congress.

– I am very skeptical about what we’re doing right now, he insisted.

– The Houthi behaviour is abhorrent but i have to admit. I have grave skepticism about what we are doing right now. I have grave skepticism about the legal authorities and i have grave skepticism about the absence of shared responsibility with nations whos ships are being attacked by the Houthis, the Democrat explained.

– Why should the US and the UK be shouldering the burden of protecting other nations ships? And i have serious skepticism about the effictiveness of this operation in terms of deescalating the attacks on the red sea, he continued.

Kaine pointed out that there is no congressional approval or authorization for these hostilities – while the U.S. has lost troops and the bombing has resulted in civilian deaths in Yemen.

– Article two self defence means that you can defend US personell, you can defend US military assets and you propably can defend US commercial ships. But the defense of other nations commercial ships in no way and its not even close, thats not self defense under article 2 of the constitution.

“Strategically smart”

– And a president cant make it self defende by calling another nation a partner. If you are defending the commercial ships of other nations, it is in my view laughable to call that self-defense, he continued.

Kaine acknowledged that bombing targets in Yemen or protecting other countries’ ships can be “strategically smart”, but repeatedly pointed out that the Biden administration is acting without any political support, and that this is unacceptable.

TNT is truly independent!

We don’t have a billionaire owner, and our unique reader-funded model keeps us free from political or corporate influence. This means we can fearlessly report the facts and shine a light on the misdeeds of those in power.

Consider a donation to keep our independent journalism running…

The US has struck at least 230 targets inside Yemen that it says are linked to the Houthi rebels, an armed group that has attacked a large number of commercial vessels in the Red Sea.

The stated purpose of the US strikes is to neutralize the Houthis’ ability to carry out maritime attacks, which have reportedly killed hundreds of people, many of them civilians.