Saturday, June 16, 2018

Forgetting the Success Achieved

Yemen wants to rapidly capture the port of Hodeidah to deny the Houthi a major source of smuggled Iranian weapons and to keep relief supplies flowing to avoid a humanitarian catastrophe.

This is a major offensive against a tough target. No doubt.

But this is nonsense:

The coalition of Arab states has battled with little success for three years to defeat the Houthis, who control the capital Sanaa, the Hodeidah port and most of Yemen's populated areas. The assault on Hodeidah is the alliance's first attempt to capture such a well-defended major city.

"We are at the edges of the airport and are working to secure it now," the Arab coalition said in a statement to Reuters. "Operational priority is to avoid civilian casualties, maintain the flow of humanitarian aid, and allow for the UN to press the Houthis to evacuate the city." [emphasis added]

The Arab coalition's intervention reversed the rebel tide and has slowly ground down and pushed back the rebels. There is a lot more to do in order to win the war, but it is definitely untrue to say that the coalition has had little success in the war.