The US has the power to set a global standard on international human rights. Unfortunately, it is retreating from our global rules-based system
The promise by Donald Trump to veto the bipartisan Congressional War Powers Resolution on Yemen is significant in and of itself. The decision is rightly drawing significant fire. The war in Yemen is a humanitarian disaster and a strategic failure, with precisely the forces the Administration says it opposes – Iran, jihadists, separatists – gaining ground on the back of the bankrupt Saudi-led war strategy.
However, there is a wider, ugly picture, beyond Yemen. It can be summarized as an Age of Impunity: where war crimes go unpunished and the laws of war become optional. This is not solely the responsibility of the United States, but the US has the power and position to set a global standard, and when it fails to do so the effects are felt worldwide, by innocent civilians feeling the brunt of lawless military tactics and humanitarian aid workers risking life and limb as they go about their work.
If the most powerful countries in the world do not set an example, then it is impossible to police the system
David Miliband is president and CEO of International Rescue Committee and former foreign secretary