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Documentary: VICE – Yemen: The Enemy of My Enemy

Aired (February 13, 2015). VICE investigates the war in Yemen.

In 2009, when he saw airplanes crossing over the border from Saudi Arabia, Mohammed Jubran Abu Halah was 13 years old. The aircraft started dropping bombs over Saddah, a largely agricultural area in the north of Sa’dah province. Although he says that there was no fighting in the area — neither he nor his family are supporters in any meaningful sense of the Houthi movement — a number of bomblets landed in and around Al Uguum, his village. Sometime after the war ended, his father, a farmer, returned to tend to the family’s land.

“”There was a bomb dropped during the war that fell near my house,” Mohammed said over the phone from Al Uguum, where he still lives. “It looked like a teacup. When my father found it, he didn’t know what it was so he tried to pick it up.”

The bomblet exploded, killing Mohammed’s father and his 4-year-old brother, Yahya; both Mohammed and his mother were hit by shrapnel.

The family received no compensation from the government, and had to foot the bill for treatment at a hospital in Sa’dah city, several hours’ drive away. While Mohammed was in the hospital being treated, the young son of a family friend picked up another bomblet, which neighbors say was the size and shape of a grenade. He was also killed.

Now 17, Mohammed can do little to help his family.It hit me in the leg, the thigh, my left hand, and eye,” he says. “Now I can see very little, I am basically blind. I am no use.”” [02]

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