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30.04.2015 Author: Viktor Mikhin

Who is to Blame for the Tragedy in Yemen?

Y45345345Artificially created by the West and their minion – Saudi Arabia, the Yemen crisis is unfolding according to their pre-planned scenario. Instead of helping the fraternal Yemen in the peaceful settlement of internal disputes, Riyadh has followed the lead of the US and begun to use military means to establish its dictatorship. At first, as planned, the first phase of the plan was carried out, i.e. the bombing of peaceful cities, towns and villages from planes of the so-called Arab coalition, when pilots developed combat experience launching bomb strikes in the absence of any air defense. During this phase, the United States actively helped the Saudis with intelligence, logistics and organization of military air sorties. But even in such circumstances, Saudi pilots did not particularly trouble themselves over launching attacks on actual militant targets of Houthis, but prefered to bomb major cities such as Sana’a, Aden and many others.

“The air raids in which our valiant falcons participated along with our brothers from the countries of the coalition eliminated all threats to the security of the kingdom and neighboring countries by destroying heavy weapons and ballistic weapons, which Houthi groups and forces under the control of Ali Abdullah Saleh had taken over,” reads a statement quoted by state media in Saudi Arabia. However, the fact is that these bombings by “glorious falcons” harmed mostly civilians; women, the elderly and children. According to WHO, as a result of the armed conflict, 944 civilians had been killed and another 3,487 wounded in Yemen from March 19 to April 17, 2015.

Then, according to the plan developed by the Pentagon, Saudi troops began entering the Yemen territory. The coalition of Arab countries announced the launch on the night of April 21 to 22 of a new operation in Yemen called “Restoration of Hope”. According to Saudi media, the goal of the operation is to restore the political process and fight against terrorism, and combat Houthi military activity. The official representative of the coalition command, Brigadier General Ahmed Asiri, said that its forces will continue the naval blockade of Yemen in order to prevent the supply of arms to the rebels. “If necessary, we will again resort to force. Under the new operation, we will do everything to stop all maneuvers by the Houthis,” said Ahmed Asiri.

Quite naturally, the United States immediately rushed to help the Saudis. The Washington Post reported that the US Theodore Roosevelt, aircraft carrier, and a missile cruiser were sent to the waters of Yemen to join the rest of the ten US warships as a warning to Iran, who is allegedly supplying arms to rebels. Barack Obama’s administration began a show of force, but acknowledged that the fleet can be used to stem the flow of Iranian weapons to the rebel Houthis. The warships are also intended to reassure Saudi Arabia, an American ally, who is carrying out airstrikes against the rebels in Yemen and who has sent its own forces to Yemen.

The truth behind Washington’s actions in the events in Yemen is fairly accurately described by the columnist of the German publication Deutsche Wirtschafts Nachrichten under the title: “The Situation in Yemen Shows How Inconsistent the United States Is.” The columnist writes: “Thus, the events in Yemen show how inconsistent are the actions of the US in the international arena; they are doing exactly what they are accusing Russia of, namely protecting their sphere of influence.  Naturally, in the case of Russia it is called ‘aggression’, and ‘legal protection of security’ in the case of the United States.” This is not only blatant demagoguery, but simple disdain for international law.

One fact deserves very close attention, i.e. what troops were sent to Yemen? As reported by the Saudi press, Saudi King Salman bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud personally sent fighters of the Saudi Arabian National Guard to Yemen. It is worth noting that the National Guard reports directly to the King, and holds a special place in the military system of the Kingdom. It is a crucially important power structure ensuring the internal security of the country’s ruling dynasty, Al Saud, and the guardians are regarded by the authorities as a kind of a counterweight to the armed forces of the country. In other words, the Saudi rulers do not fully trust their land units recruited from ordinary village boys who could easily revolt, thereby inflicting heavy losses in this punitive operation.

In addition, the Saudi rulers want to test their National Guard, who make up the elite of all troops, for which Riyadh is spending a lot of money on the most modern weapons, training, and funding. After all, soon will the National Guard be active in police operations on the Saudi territory itself. Saudi Arabia is now very similar to a seething volcano that is about to explode. This is especially true of the Kingdom’s large Shiite population, which, living mainly in the oil-rich Persian Gulf coast, does get a fraction of lucrative incomes. In addition, the Shiites are also very disadvantaged in civil rights in the Kingdom which is ruled by Sunnis, and only Sunnis are appointed to well-paid public offices. By the way, Shiites are not represented in the National Guard either, but they make up the foundation of the ground units. So there is nothing surprising in the fact that Sunnis, and not Shiites, have been sent to pacify Yemen.

It should be said that, Riyadh prepared well in advance for this provocation by sharply increasing defense spending by 17% in 2014. The largest Arab kingdom was not only increased military spending during the last year at a record pace among the top 15 countries with the highest military budgets, but also, according to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), almost caught up with Russia with US$80.8 billion and US$84.5 billion, respectively.

The ground operation will, of course, invoke a patriotic reaction from the Yemenis who are famous for their patriotism. Perhaps even those who now support in principle this strike and consider Houthis as their political opponents will answer foreign aggression with resistance. Undoubtedly, in any case, there will be a large number of victims. The conflict will be become much more serious and will spread further. This is in fact the main threat of what is happening there. Notably, the decision to strike was made before peaceful solutions to the problems of the country, which has been in deep crisis since 2011, were exhausted.

The developments in Yemen show quite clearly that the United States, and now Saudi Arabia as well, are hysterically using their armed might, once again bringing the world to the brink of another conflict. By artificially creating one hotbed of tension after another in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria, and now in Yemen, Washington and its minions are trying to subjugate the world to their will, to make people live under their “democracy” imported from the outside by bombings and launching rockets. However, as events show, people tend to live in their sovereign states by their centuries-old laws, and no aggressor, however strong they may be, will be able to prevent them from doing so.

Viktor Mikhin, member correspondent of RANS, exclusively for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook”.

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