We have been try to kick ISIS in the ass for about 8 months…..and all the while Yemen has been on the verge of collapse…..the US has pointed to the country as a bit of a success in the war on AQAP….we have killed many fighters and probably more civilians but that the war is going well on the Arab Peninsula…..
while we were patting ourselves on the back a conflict has been smouldering since the 1990’s with an occasional blow up here and there……and in the last 3 months that smouldering ember has become a full fledged war…….the Houthis, a Shi’a tribe from the northwest of the country has taken it upon themselves to storm the capital of Yemen, Sann’a and his consolidating their hold in a move to take the port of Aden…..
Saudi Arabia has had a hard on for the Houthis for years and some minor skirmishes have erupted…..minor, that is until yesterday………
Saudi Ambassador to the United States Adel al-Jubeir has announced that his country has begun military operations against Yemen, with an eye toward restoring Gen. Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi as the “legitimate government.”
Reports are that the military action has begun with airstrikes, which Saudi officials insist are being conducted only by Saudi warplanes and not with any coordination with any other country, against the Houthi forces.
Yemen was heading in the direction of a multi-faction civil war at any rate, with Hadi’s forces increasingly confined to the south, the Houthis spanning the north and west, al-Qaeda in the tribal areas, and ISIS and the forces of previous dictator Ali Abdullah Saleh both roaming around as well. Now, the Saudis are in the mix.
Obviously the Saudis’ goal is to install a friendly government, and to that end they’re seeing Gen. Hadi, “elected” in a single-candidate vote in 2012, as having at least a little legitimacy. Hadi’s resignation and subsequent fleeing into exile, however, are going to make it awfully hard for the Saudis to reassert him as a credible ruler.
How long will this situation continue? The longer the more of a chance that the US will be drawn into this conflict……..and once we enter our enemies will triple throughout the Middle East.
Will the US use a level head in this situation? Or will we rush to help an “ally”?
Whatever we decide it will most likely be wrong……this conflict will be a lose-lose scenario.