Providing rations at school for children is a way to boost nutrition and class attendance at the same time. If the current suspension of this program continues, many Yemeni children will be denied the opportunity to lift themselves out of poverty.
How might these food shortages affect the war against terrorism and Al Qaeda? A hungry and desperate population weakens the government of Yemen and its ability to resist extremist forces. In addition, a discontented population can prove to be fertile ground for terrorist recruiting. Al Qaeda needs the support of the population to thrive in a country.
U.S. leadership and international cooperation could get food programs restored. Once this happens, you have a platform for starting Food for Work projects that can improve infrastructure in Yemen. Some of these projects could address agricultural production and extremely crucial water conservation and distribution.
It boils down to balance when dealing with U.S. policy toward Yemen. We can fill the country with military aid, but if hunger, poverty, and development are neglected, no strategy will succeed. Food is the foundation of all things for a country, and for millions of Yemenis it is what they need right now more than anything.
Visit the CARE 2 Petition to Support Yemen.
Visit the World Food Program USA page on Yemen to learn how to help.