February 21, 2021


Oversimplifying the Yemen War Teaches the Wrong Lessons (Ari Heistein, 2/21/21, National Interest)

It is worth considering two possible scenarios. First, it is conceivable that the launch of the Saudi campaign and Riyadh's subsequent desire to extricate itself from the quagmire would lead the Houthis to agree to integrate into a unified national Yemeni government in which they would presumably be the prime powerbrokers of a dysfunctional political system, a la Hezbollah in Lebanon. But such a settlement appears unlikely as it would encounter the same issue that the article claims currently drives Houthi intransigence--"Houthi ascendance." In 2014-2015, the group's rise from a small, disorganized group in a Yemeni backwater to conquering Yemen's two largest cities would not incline them toward compromise; all the more so when they are being targeted by an ineffective and inexperienced Saudi adversary that has been separated from its American security guarantor. The second and more likely scenario is that the Saudi-led coalition carries out an even more ham-fisted military campaign that is unable to dislodge the Houthis from significant territories in Yemen and so the Iran-backed group remains in control of the vast majority of the country.

Third option: recognize the historic Houthi territory in Northern Yemen as an independent nation.  Dun the Sa'uds for the cost of rebuilding the Southern Sunni nation.

Posted by at February 21, 2021 12:00 AM