Republican Literally Read Saudi Talking Points to Support War in Yemen

Republican Literally Read Saudi Talking Points to Support War in Yemen May 3, 2019

The Intercept got their hands on a set of talking points handed out to some Republican legislators by hired lobbyists for Saudi Arabia the day the House debated officially opposing the Saudi war in Yemen. Then they compared them to actual speeches on the floor and one Republican Congressman, Ed Royce, literally read them verbatim to urge the House not to adopt the resolution, which ultimately passed.

REP. ED ROYCE, a senior Republican who, at the time, chaired the Foreign Affairs Committee, gave a speech on the House floor in November 2017 imploring his fellow lawmakers to maintain support for the Saudi Arabian-led war in Yemen. Royce warned that foreign adversaries — namely, Iran — could gain a foothold in Yemen through the Houthi rebels.

“Part of the problem here is the leaders of the Houthi militia were indoctrinated in Qom, in Iran, as part of an Iranian attempt to construct a Hezbollah-like proxy in Yemen,” warned Royce, suggesting that the rebels in Yemen were merely Iranian cutouts, something experts dispute.

The inflammatory line had been scripted by a lobbyist for Saudi Arabia — like much of Royce’s impassioned speech. “During the 1990s, the leaders of the Houthi militia were indoctrinated in the Iranian city of Qom as part of an Iranian attempt to construct a Hezbollah-like proxy in Yemen,” says a set of lobbyist talking points obtained by The Intercept.

Royce had received talking points earlier that day from a lobbyist retained by the kingdom of Saudi Arabia, according to federal disclosure forms, in order to undermine congressional opposition to the Yemen war.

Wanna bet that Royce received a big donation from Saudi-related interests in the United States as well? Such bribes are often funneled through lobbying firms to launder the foreign money.

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