So, I'm not Reuters, read the stories where you might like. Basically, in response to the Saudi killing of the Washington Post journalist, the US stated that parties had 30 days to get around a table and hash out peace in Yemen (for those not aware, Saudi Arabia has been supporting and functionally leading the destruction of Yemen in pursuit of Yemeni separatists who rose to prominence in the Arab Spring).

This was a shockingly moral and well-calibrated response to the Khashoggi murder that I was honestly pretty shocked. This is even more clever and appropriate than yanking Saudi Arabia's chain on the arms deal (which was what the press was suggesting).

Obviously, when you're surprised, you should imagine an explanation before continuing. Whatever you thought before didn't predict what happened, but having a sliver of information is enough to try again, so I asked myself: what happened here?

Immediate conclusion: Trump had nothing to do with this. It's possible he was distracted enough by the midterms he didn't care.

And you can Google it of course, but this is correct. Trump has made no statement nor confirmed any specific threats (which I think the staffers wisely didn't enumerate, given how changeable Trump is).

I'd like to register a guess about what's going to happen here: little, beyond peace talks. They should be able to manage that, unless these people are allergic to the table cleaning chemicals used at the UN. But they can sit in a room all they want – this is maybe the biggest humanitarian crisis in the world right now (can Myanmar and North Korea be considered crises, or are they just constant tragedies?), if it could be stopped by a stern look and an honest chat, it would have been.

You don't destroy your own country because people are rude to you. You do it because you hate them so much you don't care what else you lose. That's what has happened to Yemen.

So where's the diplomatic weight the US is going to bring? I don't see it, but I'm not an expert on this subject. We play too rough with the Saudi royal family, they'll threaten to shift their oil contracts to include those denominated in Euros, I imagine, if they haven't already begun those threats or that transition. Considering they're opposing a separatist movement, they might even get arms from China if they were really willing to go to the mat over this (which doesn't seem likely, but who knows, the specter of the Arab Spring probably still keeps them up at night). And Yemen is so broken that I'm not sure economic sanctions would be a meaningful threat.

So, not much will happen. But the US government is trying, and that's commendable, at least these days. [I'm not being rude, it used to be we only congratulated people for accomplishing things, not just trying, but these retirement age folks, you know how they expect participation trophies, I guess. Mattis earns his metals, but not all of his colleagues are like that. Pretty sure Trump has publicly accepted a gift of an earned Purple Heart, which is... an act of stolen valor, I can't help but think. Dishonorable, distasteful, and despite the fact that the veteran meant the gift in good faith and with a full heart, the PR stunt element of it is somewhat stomach-churning.]