Author: gunar-olsen

Gunar Olsen is a New York-based journalist. You can follow him on Twitter at @GunarOlsen.

Why I Confronted Gerald Feierstein, a Key American Advocate for Saudi Arabia’s War on Yemen

Former US Ambassador to Yemen Gerald Feierstein, of the Saudi/UAE-funded Middle East Institute, denied that he lied about foreign government funding, and called a Yemeni journalist a “terrorist.”

By Gunar Olsen / AlterNet

At a public event in New York last week, Gerald Feierstein, director of the Middle East Institute’s Center for Gulf Affairs and former U.S. ambassador to Yemen, denied claims that he lied on a congressional disclosure form about foreign government funding. He also called Abdulelah Haider Shaye, an independent Yemeni journalist whose reporting on the U.S. covert war in Yemen landed him in a jail cell at the request of the U.S. government during Feierstein’s tenure as ambassador, a “terrorist.”

The event where Feierstein appeared was organized by Fordham Law School’s Center on National Security, which recently hired former CIA director John Brennan as a “distinguished fellow for global security.” Feierstein used his time to condemn what he saw as the destabilizing influence of Iran in the Middle East, hyping the threat of Iranian support for the Houthis in Yemen, who have been the target of a brutal 32-month bombing campaign led by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates with significant support from the United States.

The war on Yemen has created the world’s worst humanitarian catastrophe, causing 130 children to die everyday from extreme hunger and disease, forcing 20 million Yemeni civilians (almost three-fourths of the population) into need of immediate aid and unleashing the worst cholera outbreak in history.

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Gunar Olsen is a New York-based journalist. You can follow him on Twitter at @GunarOlsen.