Yemen Crisis/Conflict & the "Decisive Storm" Coalition

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'Death of political solution': Yemen's Houthis vow to avenge death of top leader
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Saleh al-Samad was number two on the Saudi-led coalition’s most-wanted list before he was killed in an air strike last week

Several Houthi leaders and members of the political council on Monday strongly condemned the death of Saleh al-Samad, head of the Houthi Supreme Political Council, by an air strike last Thursday in Hodeidah on Yemen’s west coast.

The current Houthi leader, Abdul Malik al-Houthi, said in a televised speech on Monday that Samad’s death will have severe consequences.

"This crime will not pass without punishment; neither this nor other crimes like the targeting of a wedding in Hajjah province that left dozens dead and injured," al-Houthi said.

Al-Houthi said that the US and the Saudi Arabia are responsible for Samad's death.

Samad was number two on the coalition’s most-wanted list and the coalition had offered $20m for any information that would lead to his capture.

Mohammed al-Dailami, a Houthi-affiliated political analyst, told Middle East Eye that the group may make good on its threats.

"Today, Yemenis fired two ballistic missiles towards Aramco in Saudi Arabia," Dailami said, referencing the country’s oil company.

The Houthi Council of National Defence
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a state of alert following Samad’s death and threatened to retaliate.

Samad's history
Samad was born in 1979 in the Houthi stronghold of Sa'ada's Sahar near the Saudi border. Samad graduated from Sanaa University and studied Islamic theology in Sa'ada. He was a student of Badr al-Deen al-Houthi, believed to have kickstarted the Houthi rebellion in 2004.

Samad helped wage the last three Houthi rebellions against the provincial government in Sa'ada, during which the government designated him one of 55 most-wanted Houthis.

When he was part of the insurgency in 2007, Samad lost two brothers and warplanes destroyed his house.

Within Houthi circles, Samad established himself as a fearless fighter and a rising political star.

He worked as a teacher in Saada province and held several political leadership positions until he headed the Houthi Political Council in 2011.

When the Houthis took over Sanaa in 2014, they nominated him as an adviser to President Abdu Rabbuh Mansour Hadi, according to the Peace and National Partnership Agreement, which was the power-sharing unity government between Yemen’s previous ruling government and the Houthis.

In November 2014, Samad
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several of Hadi’s cabinet appointments despite Houthi opposition.

When the unity government fell apart in early 2015, allowing the Houthis to take over the entire government, Samad maintained his role as a “
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” and Hadi launched a military campaign against the Houthis with the help of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

The conflict has so far resulted in at least 10,000 deaths and a cholera epidemic that has affected more than a million people.

Hadi groups celebrate
Pro-Hadi activists welcomed Samad’s death, considering it a blow to the Houthis.

Yemen’s exiled government
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his death “a painful blow to the Houthis that will shroud their political and military state with confusion," spokesman Rageh Badi told al-Riyadh newspaper.

He said that Samad's death sends a clear message to Houthi leaders that "Iranian terrorism" will lead to their demise.

"Samad's death is a rejection of the coup and a victory to the country. In his last days, Samad visited several provinces, inciting for war and destruction, calling for the targeting of the Red Sea and international water passages," he added.

Another Houthi political analyst based in Sanaa, Ibrahim al-Siragi, told MEE that Samad’s death may be a loss for the Houthis, but it will not deter them from pushing ahead with their plan.

"When [former Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh] was killed, his supporters stopped fighting and disappeared from the frontline, but this did not happen with the fighters of [the Houthis]," he said.

Siragi added that Samad’s death may intensify the conflict.

“The death of Samad means the death of a political solution," he said.


New bout of heavy fighting in Yemen kills dozens....


"Yemeni officials and witnesses say heavy fighting between pro-government forces and Shiite rebels in recent days has killed more than 150 people.

Government forces have been trying to seize rebel-held areas along the western coast, while an allied Saudi-led coalition has been targeting the rebels with airstrikes in the northwestern Saada province."

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Saudi-backed government forces have begun an assault on the key Yemeni port of Hudaydah


Saudi-backed government forces have begun an assault on the key Yemeni port of Hudaydah, which is held by rebels.

The port is the main point of entry for aid for people in rebel-held areas and agencies have warned of a humanitarian catastrophe if it is attacked.

About eight million people in the war-torn country are at risk of starvation.

Bombing started after Iranian-backed Houthi rebels ignored a deadline set by the government to withdraw by midnight (21:00 GMT on Tuesday).

On Tuesday, the exiled government of President Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi said efforts to persuade the rebels to withdraw had been exhausted.

The Saudi-owned Al Arabiya network reported early on Wednesday that the "liberation" of Hudaydah had begun with a large-scale ground assault supported by air and naval cover from a Saudi-led multinational coalition.

Coalition warplanes and warships carried out strikes against rebel positions around the city.
Yesterday at 8:27 PM
Today at 8:00 AM
while on the ground now ...:
Al Arabiya shows first scenes from vicinity of Hodeidah airport after recapture
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while also noticed in Twitter
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Yemen Observer Retweeted علي شرف المحطوري

Houthi video from Hodeida airport area.
[linked inside
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now I read
News analysis: Offensive on Hodeidah deals fatal blow to peace process in Yemen
Xinhua| 2018-06-17 03:36:43
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United Nations Envoy to Yemen, Martin Griffiths, arrived Saturday in the capital Sanaa in an effort to salvage the peace process amid a major military operation by the Saudi Arabian-led coalition and pro-government forces to recapture Hodeidah city from the Houthi group.

Sources said Griffiths will discuss with Houthi officials conditions to stop the offensive which analysts said would deal a fatal blow to the political process and deepen the already dire humanitarian situation in the country.

Abdulwahab Al-Sharafi, a political analyst, said that "resuming the political process depends on the success of the UN envoy to convince regional players and their Western backers, not local factions, to be committed to peace."

"The decision is in the hands of foreign players who are not serious about peace and are seeking a war at any cost," he said.

The internationally recognized government said the offensive was launched after all peaceful and political means to convince the Houthis to withdraw from Hodeidah were exhausted and that the military action will now continue until all parts of Yemen are liberated from the Houthis, according to the government-run Saba news agency.

Yaseen Al-Tamimi, a political writer and analyst, said the political solution is considered dead if the offensive continues.

"The coalition will then seek to reshape the political scene in accordance with its priorities that may complicate the situation further. In other words, this is a miscalculation," Tamimi said.

The government and the coalition said the offensive will force the Houthis to come back to the negotiation table as they are accusing the Houthis of using the Hodeidah seaport to smuggle Iranian weapons including ballistic missiles and obstructing the flow of humanitarian aid.

"Such a justification comes within the response of the government and coalition to mounting pressure placed on them by some countries and organizations opposing the operation," Tamimi said.

He added that another problem is that "those opposing the operation are concerned about its consequences but have not taken actions to prevent it."

Local sources said on Saturday the coalition and government forces advanced over the Houthis around the Hodeidah but have been unable to seize control of it because of the landmines installed by the Houthis.

In recent weeks, these forces have seized few districts including Al-Duraihmi south of the city. They are poised to push deeper toward the seaport.

Many families are fleeing the raging battles, the sources said.

Hodeidah is Yemen's second most populated city with around 3 million people living in it, according to official statistics published before the war.

The UN has said that the city currently has a population of 600,000 people.

Around two thirds of the total population of Yemen, around 29 million, live in the Houthi-run regions and the Hodeidah seaport is the only lifeline for most of them.

Observers argued that the impact on the civilians and humanitarian operations will be inevitable.

The Houthis have held the coalition and its backers responsible for the consequences of the operation including likely destruction of the seaport.

They have also threatened to choke off maritime traffic in the Red Sea and to attack coalition warships if they approach Hodeidah.

The UN and humanitarian agencies have warned that disruption to aid supplies will have serious consequences on the humanitarian situation, uring all parties to keep the port open and to provide access to humanitarian aid.

Meanwhile, Abbas Al-Dhaleai, a political commentator, said losing Hodeidah would not mean the end of the war.

"It will choke off a key source of Houthi's income, but I do not expect it will force the Houthis to come back to negotiation table for two reasons, the first is that they will not accept peace after a heavy loss," he argued.

"The second is that the Houthis are still controlling key regions including the capital Sanaa and mountainous regions in the north where the coalition and the government will not risk military operations," he added.

"One more thing, all seaports liberated from the Houthis are still idle. They are not being used for aid delivery or trade activities. What difference will the liberation of the Hodeidah seaport make?" Al-Dhaleai said.

Yemen has the world's worst humanitarian crisis. More than 22 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance and protection including more than 8 million at the risk of famine.

If the situation does not improve, a further 10 million will starve to death by the end of the year, the UN has warned.


Military sources here in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have told the BBC that a major force of Yemeni, UAE and Sudanese troops is on standby in Eritrea to take part in a final push to retake Hudaydah port from Houthi rebels.


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Russian Military News, Reports, Data, etc.
responding to
Mar 22, 2017
... ( I say Ironic as the whole reason for guided munitions is to reduce collateral by having a higher chance to hit enemy targets.) ...
Mar 22, 2017
also ironically, Savages then, with surgical precision, are able to hit their person of interest for example inside a funeral house:
Oct 9, 2016
thus reducing the collateral damage as compared to if they had carpet-bombed the whole residential district with said funeral house
Bomb that killed 40 children in Yemen was supplied by the US
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"... the weapon that left dozens of children dead on August 9 was a 500-pound (227 kilogram) laser-guided MK 82 bomb ..."
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