Saudis are about to lose the war against Yemen

When Mohammed bin Salman, sixth and favourite son of Saudi Arabia’s King Salman, launched Operation Decisive Storm against the Houthis in Yemen in 2015 he expected the war to be won in a matter of weeks. He had every reason to be confident. Ground forces from Egypt, Morocco, Jordan, Sudan, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, and Academi (formerly called Blackwater) took part in the invasion.
The United States provided intelligence and logistical support, including aerial refueling and search-and-rescue for downed coalition pilots, plus the U.S. Navy provided a blockade of the Yemeni coast.
And if that wasn't enough, the Saudis cut a deal with al-Qaeda, because the Houthis were a common enemy.

However, an investigation by The Associated Press found the coalition has been paying some al-Qaeda commanders to leave key cities and towns while letting others retreat with weapons, equipment, and wads of looted cash.
Hundreds of al-Qaeda members were recruited to join the coalition as soldiers, the report said.

Key figures in the deal-making said the United States was aware of the arrangements and held off on drone attacks against the armed group, which was created by Osama bin Laden in 1988.

Except for arms shipments from Iran, the Houthis had no allies. It was supposed to a walk-over.

Instead it has become a disaster for Saudi Arabia, and yet another political and diplomatic embarrassment for the U.S. Everyone involved is looking for a way to extract themselves from this conflict while still saving face.
Except for the Houthis.
The Houthis have been on the offense for nearly two years now, and are in the process of capturing Marib, the Saudi-puppet government’s last major stronghold in northern Yemen. Marib also commands Yemen's small oil-producing region, which makes it critical.


The Saudis have been forced into peace talks with the Houthis, but are still trying to dictate terms. You don't dictate terms to enemy who is winning.
What's more, most of the Saudi allies, such as Egypt, have long since left the war. The Saudis replaced those troops with mercenaries.

The Coalition was also able to hire mercenaries from Reflex Responses, a private company connected to Erik Prince, the founder of the private company known as Blackwater.

Isn't it interesting that wherever you find evil being done in the world, Erik Prince is usually involved?
To make matters worse for the Saudi coalition, they weren't all on the same page. UAE, the Saudis biggest ally, supported a separatist group in south Yemen that ended up being very popular in the region, and at times actively fought against Saudi-backed forces. The situation in the non-Houthi region is deteriorating.

The UAE-backed separatists in Yemen have declared a state of emergency across the southern provinces including the disputed port city of Aden. The city is supposed to be the interim capital of the internationally-recognised Yemeni government in exile in Riyadh...
Citing local sources in Aden, the Yemen Press Agency reported that hundreds of protesters closed the area around the May 22 Stadium and demanded improvements in basic services such as electricity, water and oil derivatives. They were demonstrating for a third straight day. Some are reported to have set fire to government buildings and burned cars in the streets.

Congress, after discovering that they bet on the wrong horse, is trying to find a way out of it's involvement in this fiasco.

The US House of Representatives approved a measure on Thursday that would force an end to maintenance and intelligence support for Saudi Arabia’s airstrikes against Yemen’s Houthi rebels.

Lawmakers voted 219-207 to advance the measure, which was introduced by Democratic Rep. Ro Khanna (Calif.) and Vermont Independent Sen. Bernie Sanders. The heads of the House Armed Services and Intelligence committees, Adam Smith (D-Wash.) and Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), also co-sponsored the measure.

This certainly looks good, and it's a long overdue win for the progressives, but at the same time Congress also passed this amendment.

But unlike Khana’s amendment, Meeks’s contains loopholes the White House can exploit in order to perpetuate current operations. The provision Meeks and his colleagues have introduced is especially lenient to the White House’s current approach to the war.
...These caveats leave open the door for the Biden administration to continue its tolerance for what many experts consider “offensive” action. In February, the president announced an end to American assistance of “offensive” attacks on Yemen, yet U.S.-backed Saudi warplanes have still conducted airstrikes on the country, and the White House has remained silent on the kingdom’s blockades of Sana’a airport and Hodeidah seaport.

Around a quarter of a million people have died in this pointless war.
This is looking a lot like Afghanistan. Eventually there will be an ugly end to this ugly war, and the U.S. will be on the losing side again.

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was reported here, and it concerned what you have pointed out, our ultimate support of Al Qaeda:

The Absurdity of U.S. Support for the War on Yemen

The American Conservative
APRIL 17, 2015

A senior commander at Central Command (CENTCOM), speaking on condition of anonymity, scoffed at that argument. “The reason the Saudis didn’t inform us of their plans,” he said, “is because they knew we would have told them exactly what we think — that it was a bad idea.”

Military sources said that a number of regional special forces officers and officers at U.S. Special Operations Command (SOCOM) argued strenuously against supporting the Saudi-led intervention because the target of the intervention, the Shia Houthi movement — which has taken over much of Yemen and which Riyadh accuses of being a proxy for Tehran — has been an effective counter to Al-Qaeda.

... Unsurprisingly, the hawks that have pushed the U.S. into every disastrous intervention in the last fifteen years haven’t thought through the consequences of this war, either, and are cheering on the Saudi campaign that threatens to make Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula stronger than it was before.

... Over the last decade, the U.S. has toppled two governments to the later benefit of jihadist groups, and it considered doing the same in Syria. In each case, the U.S. has contributed to the destabilization of the region, and jihadists have made gains as a result. In Yemen, the U.S. is aiding in an attack on a group that is also opposed to the local Al Qaeda affiliate. None of these wars has made the U.S. or the region more secure. On the contrary, they have created more violence and upheaval in the region and strengthened the groups that are most hostile to us.

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CB's picture

@Linda Wood
what was accomplished. It was to destabilize the ME and ensure these Arab countries were completely destroyed and were no longer capable of projecting power beyond their borders.

Once this was done, the next part was to dismember them. Fortunately that has yet to be accomplished despite Israel continuing to illegally attack Lebanon and Syria. Putin put a stop to this in Syria with Russia's competent military.

Take note from Wesley Clark's video the names of those in Washington that had taken defacto control of the White House and military and the country to whom they give allegiance (it's not the USA).

“Greater Israel”: The Zionist Plan for the Middle East
“[The Yinon plan] is an Israeli strategic plan to ensure Israeli regional superiority. It insists and stipulates that Israel must reconfigure its geo-political environment through the balkanization of the surrounding Arab states into smaller and weaker states.

Israeli strategists viewed Iraq as their biggest strategic challenge from an Arab state. This is why Iraq was outlined as the centerpiece to the balkanization of the Middle East and the Arab World. In Iraq, on the basis of the concepts of the Yinon Plan, Israeli strategists have called for the division of Iraq into a Kurdish state and two Arab states, one for Shiite Muslims and the other for Sunni Muslims. The first step towards establishing this was a war between Iraq and Iran, which the Yinon Plan discusses.

The Atlantic, in 2008, and the U.S. military’s Armed Forces Journal, in 2006, both published widely circulated maps that closely followed the outline of the Yinon Plan. Aside from a divided Iraq, which the Biden Plan also calls for, the Yinon Plan calls for a divided Lebanon, Egypt, and Syria. The partitioning of Iran, Turkey, Somalia, and Pakistan also all fall into line with these views. The Yinon Plan also calls for dissolution in North Africa and forecasts it as starting from Egypt and then spilling over into Sudan, Libya, and the rest of the region.

Greater Israel” requires the breaking up of the existing Arab states into small states.

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The Liberal Moonbat's picture

...what happens if the Houthis launch a counteroffensive?

When you've already been through hell long enough to start getting used to it, and somehow gone from genocide-victim to a nation of modern-day Davids in an underdog-with-heart-story that honestly sounds at least as badass as the backstories behind any number of Jewish holidays, what are the odds your mindset's going to have some serious visions of radically-revamped calculus?

Wouldn't be the first time Mecca changed hands....

5 users have voted.

We live in a society in which "we live in a society" is considered a subversive and vaguely-threatening statement.

In the Land of the Blind, the one-eyed man is declared insane when he speaks of colors.

@The Liberal Moonbat
But Mecca is not in danger.
What is more likely is to see Yemen partitioned between north and south (like 1980's Yemen).
Which will have unpredictable consequences.

The bigger and more unpredictable danger is to the Saudi royal family. The crown prince has lost a lot of political capital with this losing war. And recall when he literally arrested and tortured wealthy Saudis for their money to pay for this war.
We could be looking at a coup or revolt in Saudi Arabia.

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The Liberal Moonbat's picture

@gjohnsit @gjohnsit No, I DO NOT "recall" that time [*insert Family Guy reference here*].
That's...quite something; I wonder what their dear buddies the House of Bush think of that?

It's a little reminiscent of that time some wacky Iraqi wasted all his money in a fight with his annoying religious neighbor, so he went down to the beachside and held up a rival gas-station that was doing better than his was, and there was a comical misunderstanding with his old boss, so HIJINKS ensued. Remember THAT time?!? LOLOLOLOL

2 users have voted.

We live in a society in which "we live in a society" is considered a subversive and vaguely-threatening statement.

In the Land of the Blind, the one-eyed man is declared insane when he speaks of colors.

@The Liberal Moonbat
Yeh, that was an interesting little event, and I'm sure that some Saudis have certain hard feelings about it.

But a year ago Sunday, on Nov. 4, 2017, the ultra-luxurious Riyadh hotel — with its marble floors and vast indoor swimming pool — became a gilded prison, when hundreds of Saudi royals, billionaires and senior government officials were detained in an extraordinary power play by the heir to the throne, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

The involuntary guests were told they had to sign away large chunks of their assets to be released. The detention involved both psychological abuse and — in some cases — torture, current and former U.S. officials say.
If bin Salman survives the fallout over the killing of Khashoggi, it will be in part due to the roundup at the Ritz, when he crushed his rivals and potential opponents. Some of those targeted included royals or officials linked to the late King Abdullah, who died in 2015. His relatives and associates are distrusted by the circle around King Salman, who now holds the throne.

But the crackdown generated deep resentment in the House of Saud and numerous enemies, experts and former officials said, and the crown prince could face more resistance from his internal adversaries.

and more

Some senior figures detained in last Saturday's purge in Saudi Arabia were beaten and tortured so badly during their arrest or subsequent interrogations that they required hospital treatment, Middle East Eye can reveal.

People inside the royal court also told MEE that the scale of the crackdown, which has brought new arrests each day, is much bigger than Saudi authorities have admitted, with more than 500 people detained and double that number questioned.

Members of the royal family, government ministers and business tycoons were caught up in the sudden wave of arrests orchestrated by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, known as MBS, under the banner of an anti-corruption drive.

Some, but not all, of the top figures arrested were singled out for the most brutal treatment, suffering wounds to the body sustained by classic torture methods. There are no wounds to their faces, so they will show no physical signs of their ordeal when they next appear in public.

And finally

More than 200 Saudi officials, businessmen, and family members were arrested as part of the purge, including billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, who was detained for months in the Riyadh Ritz-Carlton. The Saudi government is now moving to release those who have been cleared of corruption charges—or who have agreed to massive settlements with Salman to secure their freedom—including Alwaleed, who was ostensibly freed on Saturday. But rumors are swirling about the treatment of Alwaleed, one of the world’s richest men, and the multi-billion-dollar payment he likely made to remain chairman of Kingdom Holding Co. and maintain his massive stakes in Twitter and 21st Century Fox, among other investments. At least one report suggested that he was hung upside down and beaten.

But all is well, Alwaleed insisted this weekend, shortly before returning to his home in Riyadh. The entire episode, he said, was just a big “misunderstanding.”

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@The Liberal Moonbat
MBS fucked up again

Nine months on from Saudi Arabia’s second major oil price war in the last five years, more negative consequences are manifesting themselves. Aside from the irrevocably damaged core relationship with the U.S., the permanent distrust of international investors, and the further alienation of many of its fellow OPEC members, Saudi Arabia is now beginning to discover the true depth and breadth of damage that it has done to its own economy, which will endure for many years to come.

Figures released at the end of September show that Saudi Arabia’s economy contracted 7 per cent year-on-year (y-o-y) in the second quarter of 2020, with the Kingdom’s private sector showing a negative growth rate of 10.1 per cent, while the public sector recorded negative growth of 3.5 per cent...
This, though, would have required self-control, introspection, and intelligent analysis, the lack of which in MbS was noted by, among many others, the German intelligence service, the Bundesnachrichtendienst (BND), as long ago as 2015. As highlighted in a leaked intelligence dossier from the BND in 2015 entitled ‘Saudi Arabia - Sunni regional power torn between foreign policy paradigm change and domestic policy consolidation’ the then-Saudi Arabian defence minister, then-Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, was “trying to strengthen his own position in the royal succession [regardless] of whether this put Saudi Arabia’s relationship with erstwhile regional allies in jeopardy.” The intelligence agency added that: “The careful diplomatic stance of older members of the Saudi royal family has been replaced by an impulsive policy of intervention.” MbS’ impulsive nature had also clearly not taken into account the prescient warning from Saudi Arabia’s deputy economic minister, Mohamed Al Tuwaijri, back in 2016 which stated unequivocally – and completely unprecedented criticism of government policy from a Saudi minister - that: “If we [Saudi Arabia] don’t take any reform measures, and if the global economy stays the same, then we’re doomed to bankruptcy in three to four years.” The consequences of the oil price war that prompted this outburst from a Saudi minister were also apparently not taken into account by MbS either who now, as then, appeared more concerned with his own personal position in the royal succession (given the ill-health of King Salman) than with the economic and social health of his country or his OPEC brothers.

MBS is incompetent and is creating enemies by the bushel.

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The Liberal Moonbat's picture

@gjohnsit I can see sooo many Hollywood-worthy movies coming out of current events in the Arabian Peninsula... say nothing of, as alluded to above, any number of commemorative media of the sorts that stand not only the test of decades, but centuries - perhaps even millennia.

2 users have voted.

We live in a society in which "we live in a society" is considered a subversive and vaguely-threatening statement.

In the Land of the Blind, the one-eyed man is declared insane when he speaks of colors.