Still stinging from their last military humiliation 6 years ago at the
hands of the Houthi tribal fighters in Yemen, the Saudi Arabian royal
family has embarked on what is highly likely to turn into Saudi’s
“Vietnam”with their latest attempt at invading Yemen.
In 2009 the Saudi military’s incompetence was exposed when their major
offensive against the Houthi’s along the Saudi/Yemen border was routed
and in the following Houthi counter offensive a large chunk of Saudi
territory was captured by the lightly armed Houthi fighters.
The last time a “Pan-Arab Army” tried to invade and occupy Yemen, in
the early 1960’s, Egyptian General turned President Nasser was forced
to tuck his tail between his legs and pull his army of over 50,000 out
of what he was to later sorrowfully admit had become “Egypt's
The problems in Yemen are not about Shiite vs Sunni or Iran vs. Saudi
Arabia. Its not about Obama, whose particularly inept administration
has been forced to sit on the sidelines as the Saudi royal family
launched this ill advised misadventure.
The problems in Yemen are all about tribal conflicts going back
centuries and the only way to solve them is by a long, tedious process
of negotiations. Back in 1990 a peace deal was painstakingly
constructed that resulted in the reunification of Yemen. This peace
deal which held for over two decades was mediated by what was then the
leadership of a rag tag band of independence fighter calling
themselves the Eritrean Peoples Liberation Front, a fact yet to be
acknowledged by anyone covering the present conflict.
The Saudi are launching this war on the Yemeni people in an act of
hubris and arrogance, paranoia almost, supposedly fearful of being
surrounded by a ring of “Shi’ite enemies lead by Iran”, or at least
that is what the talking heads in the western media would have us
The fact is the Saudi royal family is brim full of a fanatically
Wahabi fired hatred towards anything resembling a Shi’ite movement,
though historically Shi’ites in west Asia hardly considered the
Houthi's of Yemen real Shi’ites.
Saudi paranoia of Iran is based on little in the way of threatening
Iranian actions, with the complete lack of Iranian involvement in
support of the Bahrain Shi’ite uprising a point of fact. For all the
talk of Iranian military support for the Houthi take over of Yemen the
evidence to support this charge is not supported by anything concrete.
The Houthi’s, fed up with their continuing neglect by the Yemeni
government, and driven by the politics of hunger stalking Yemen, made
a deal with former President Saleh, whose son headed the Yemeni army
under the deal the Saudi/Gulf States forced down the Yemeni’s throats
two years ago, and launched their offensive to take over the country.
Right from the get go the Houthi's were calling for negotiations,
though they did make it clear they were not going to allow the
”Al Queda in the Arab Peninsula” (mainly composed of exiled Saudi
fanatics) any further presence in Yemen.
Having been previously humiliated militarily in 2009, and fearing been
seen as weak and incompetent by their subjugated Shi’ite population
who reside in the oil rich eastern region of Saudi Arabia, the
Wahabist Saudi regime has embarked on what by all appearances will
turn out to be their “Vietnam”.
Of course they are doing this under the cover of a Pan Arab banner,
with Egypt promising troops in support of the anticipated invasion and
occupation of Yemen.
Egypt’s latest General turned President Al Sisi is a particularly
reluctant ally, having grown up with the memory of Egypt's humiliating
defeat in its attempt to subjugate Yemen. It is no coincidence that a
just a few weeks earlier Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States sent their
leaders to Sharm al Sheik to announce over $20 billion in aid and
investments for Egypt's tottering economy, hard cash President Al Sisi
came hat in hand to beg for.
Fighting is reported to be raging on the Yemen/Saudi border and it is
interesting to note that the Saudi military has yet to make any
serious advances there. Being that the bulk of the Houthi fighters are
concentrating for their push to capture Aden in the oil rich south of
Yemen the Saudi military attempts to invade the Houthi heartland is
not going very well.
At this point the Saudi military is still mainly an air war massacre
against the defenseless Yemen people. If and when the promised ground
offensive begins in earnest will see battle hardened Houthi militia
pitted against a supposedly pan Arab army with little experience in
real warfare. Fighting to defend their homes and families, as the Viet
Cong did in Vietnam, Saudi Arabia will find its self in a Yemeni
quagmire, Saudi’s “Vietnam” in Yemen.
Thomas C. Mountain has been living and reporting from Eritrea, next
door to Yemen, since 2006. He can be reached at thomascmountain at
yahoo dot com, or via mobile at 2917175665.
Received on Thu Apr 02 2015 - 06:49:49 EDT