News You Really Need To See: “Saudis End Air Campaign in Yemen, Seek Political Solution”

“Saudis End Air Campaign in Yemen, Seek Political Solution”

Reuters, April 21, 2015

“Saudi Arabia announced on Tuesday it was ending a month-long campaign of air strikes against the Houthi rebels who seized large areas of Yemen and said it would back a political solution to bring peace to its war-ravaged neighbor.  Iran, which has supported the fellow Shi’ite Houthis, welcomed the ceasefire, which followed months of factional fighting between the militant group and forces loyal to the government, which was driven out of the capital Sanaa. … The Saudis called for a quick resumption of U.N.-facilitated talks to try to get a peaceful political arrangement for Yemen, which has a long history of internal fighting.  Saudi Arabia had earlier signaled a change in its mission by ordering its National Guard, widely regarded as the kingdom’s best equipped military ground force, to join the campaign, but did not say what role it would play.  The bloodshed in Yemen, racked by fighting between factions supported by different regional powers, had continued earlier in the day.  At least 40 people, most of them civilians, were killed in two air strikes. … The conflict created desperate shortages of food and other supplies in Yemen, where sea and airports are closed.

Quickie analysis:  What did this accomplish?  Lots of civilians died, Saudi allies who joined were embarrassed, and the Houthis were barely slowed down, much less defeated.

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