United States Forces Strike Back: Air and Sea Assault on Houthis in Retaliation
The United States launched military operations against the Houthi rebels in Yemen in concert with the UK and other partners.
The objective is to curb the group’s persistent attacks on commercial shipping vessels in crucial waterways.
According to a United States defense official, the strikes, executed from airborne, surface, and subsurface platforms, targeted Houthi radar stations, storage facilities, and launch sites for drones, cruise missiles, and ballistic missiles.
The official emphasized that all strike targets were classified as military objectives and situated in areas devoid of civilian presence.
The strikes aim to protect both US and international shipping vessels while degrading Houthi capabilities. President Joe Biden characterized the actions as defensive and asserted his readiness to take further measures to safeguard people and international commerce.
United States Military Response to Houthi Attacks
The move follows a series of warnings from the US, the UK, and other nations to the Iran-backed rebels, cautioning them against continuing their assaults on international shipping lanes near Yemen’s coast.
Despite previous condemnations and demands to cease their provocations, the Houthis escalated their attacks, prompting the recent military response.
Mick Ryan, a retired Major General in the Australian Army and military strategist, explained that the strikes signal a shift after other diplomatic approaches failed to deter Houthi interference with international trade.
The Houthis’ largest-ever attack, involving 18 attack drones and several missiles, compelled naval assets from the US and UK to intervene, preventing damage but escalating tensions.
On January 3, a joint statement from the United States and over a dozen allies condemned the Houthis and warned of consequences. Subsequent attacks led to further warnings, with Western officials expressing concern about the global ramifications of the disruptions caused by the rebels.
Despite fears of regional escalation, the strikes are framed as a response to Houthi aggression and tensions in the region, according to military strategist Mick Ryan.