Saudi coalition claims it killed +800 al-Qaeda fighters in Yemen! | World Defense

Saudi coalition claims it killed +800 al-Qaeda fighters in Yemen!

Gasoline

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The command of the coalition forces to support the legitimacy in Yemen announced launching a joint military operation against al-Qaeda in Yemen.

The operation's participants include the Yemeni army and elements of Saudi and United Arab Emirates special forces.

The coalition command said in a statement today that the operation resulted in its first hours in the killing of more than 800 elements of Al-Qaeda and a number of their leaders and that the rest of them fled.

The statement added that this comes as part of the joint international efforts to defeat the terrorist groups in Yemen and support the Yemeni legitimate government to extend its influence and control over the Yemeni cities that fell under the control of Al-Qaeda the most important of which is the city of Al Mukalla which is considered the stronghold of the organization. The operations aim at clearing it and help the legitimacy to extend its control over it and over the rest of the Yemeni cities.

The statement added that this process will allow intensifying humanitarian relief efforts in those cities and alleviate suffering of the brotherly people of Yemen.

The countries participating in this operation emphasizes their continuation of chasing the terrorist organizations in all Yemeni cities, defeating them and depriving them from safe haven till the return of security and stability to the region.



The official Saudi Press Agency

Saudi coalition claims it killed 800 al-Qaeda fighters in Yemen
 

OursIsTheFury

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More and more conflict. When will it end? It's just humans killing other humans because other humans killed other humans. It's really a depressing time in history at the moment.
 

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More and more conflict. When will it end? It's just humans killing other humans because other humans killed other humans. It's really a depressing time in history at the moment.
Humans have been killing each other since time immemorial. Do you think Al-Qaeda members are human beings that deserve to be alive and let without confrontation?
 

RedViper

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I don't understand Saudi's strategic thinking on their Yemeni intervention.

First, they experienced a partial breakdown in their coalition structure, introducing a new tension point between Riyadh, Islamabad, and Cairo. Historically, Saudi Arabia has been assisted with manpower from those poorer and more populous nations, but there was the whole issue of asking Pakistan to only send Sunni troops which promptly ejected Pakistan from Saudi's orbit. Egypt's military is dealing with its own problems and who knows what Saudi had to promise Cairo to get involved.

Second, it introduced tension into the GCC security framework. On the face, it make sense as it is geopolitically primarily opposed to Iranian expansion, and Iran has hands deep into Yemen for some time, but these folks can barely agree on a front-facing policy towards Tehran. Its a miracle that the GCC was able to issue a joint statement on the matter and military assets from most members were few and far between.

Third, it exposed serious deficiencies in the Saudi military and National Guard's operational capacity. These are forces that have to look inward as much as outward, and it showed. For all the arms purchases from the west and joint training abroad, there were operational, intelligence (targeting), and logistical failures put on display for all the world to see. I'm sure Iran's Saudi analysts are still combing through the data.

Fourth and most importantly, Saudi Arabia spent and will spend an absolute fortune on this adventure. It is perhaps the least opportune time for Riyadh to be worrying international investors and creditors. Whatever the actual status of their finances is, global players are unsure about Saudi's fiscal health going forward.

The goals were all sound. Counter Iranian influence. Make a show of 'fighting terrorists' for the west. Stabilize the southern frontier. Reestablish a pseudo-client state in Yemen that is dependent on Saudi largesse. Create an external conflict that distracted from internal dissent.

But the way Riyadh went about it boggles my mind. Saudi Arabia committed an entire series of unforced errors. I'm sure I've missed a great deal and I am no expert on the region, but that is my view. I'd be happy to be set straight.
 

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Isn't Saudi Arabia spreading itself thin with the protracted military attacks? They have a coalition army in Syria that recently scored small victories in Palmyra (am I right on this?) and not it is the trashing of Al Qaeda in Yemen. I agree that it is a silent war between Saudi Arabia and Iran borne from more of religious than political indifferences. What if Saudi Arabia would focus on one enemy, say the ISIS, maybe it can finish the seemingly unending war in Syria.
 

explorerx7

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Saudi Arabia's obsession with the suppression of Iran which is causing it to be involved in various situations which will spread it thin and eventually it won't be really effective in any. Saudi Arabia dosesn't seem to be making any concerted effort to focus on any of these situations it's been involved in a meaningful way, it's just trying to upstage Iran at any cost.
 

Scorpion

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Saudi Arabia's obsession with the suppression of Iran which is causing it to be involved in various situations which will spread it thin and eventually it won't be really effective in any. Saudi Arabia dosesn't seem to be making any concerted effort to focus on any of these situations it's been involved in a meaningful way, it's just trying to upstage Iran at any cost.
Iran is flexing its muscles right and left in the Arab world taking advantage of the power vacuum created as a result of the US invasion of Iraq and the Arab Spring. I have disagree with you, Saudi Arabia has pushed Iran into the corner both politically and economically. Saudi Arabia has also announced the creation of the Islamic collation which will be the way to go in establishing peace and bring tranquility to the Arab world. Iran has to take that Islamic collation seriously otherwise the will be cute off of the region as whole and the Iranians know it.
 

Scorpion

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I don't understand Saudi's strategic thinking on their Yemeni intervention.

First, they experienced a partial breakdown in their coalition structure, introducing a new tension point between Riyadh, Islamabad, and Cairo. Historically, Saudi Arabia has been assisted with manpower from those poorer and more populous nations, but there was the whole issue of asking Pakistan to only send Sunni troops which promptly ejected Pakistan from Saudi's orbit. Egypt's military is dealing with its own problems and who knows what Saudi had to promise Cairo to get involved.

Second, it introduced tension into the GCC security framework. On the face, it make sense as it is geopolitically primarily opposed to Iranian expansion, and Iran has hands deep into Yemen for some time, but these folks can barely agree on a front-facing policy towards Tehran. Its a miracle that the GCC was able to issue a joint statement on the matter and military assets from most members were few and far between.

Third, it exposed serious deficiencies in the Saudi military and National Guard's operational capacity. These are forces that have to look inward as much as outward, and it showed. For all the arms purchases from the west and joint training abroad, there were operational, intelligence (targeting), and logistical failures put on display for all the world to see. I'm sure Iran's Saudi analysts are still combing through the data.

Fourth and most importantly, Saudi Arabia spent and will spend an absolute fortune on this adventure. It is perhaps the least opportune time for Riyadh to be worrying international investors and creditors. Whatever the actual status of their finances is, global players are unsure about Saudi's fiscal health going forward.

The goals were all sound. Counter Iranian influence. Make a show of 'fighting terrorists' for the west. Stabilize the southern frontier. Reestablish a pseudo-client state in Yemen that is dependent on Saudi largesse. Create an external conflict that distracted from internal dissent.

But the way Riyadh went about it boggles my mind. Saudi Arabia committed an entire series of unforced errors. I'm sure I've missed a great deal and I am no expert on the region, but that is my view. I'd be happy to be set straight.
Saudi Arabia has not asked Pakistan for anything. In fact, It was Pakistan that expressed interest to join the collation and when asked to it backed off. The GCC was not only able to take a collective measure to kick Iran out of Yemen but also pulled out a UN resolution 2216 that justifies its military operation. So far, the collation was able to librate 85% of Yemen territories that were under Houthi control. The Saudi Army has worked impressively to keep the border safe and execute missions inside Yemen itself. The Saudi Arabia along with the navy announced Yemen space and maritime restricted in a matter of 15 min. It has also worked impressively against Al-Qaeda and the operations are still ongoing. This is not an adventure rather the need of the hour thing to do. Saudis have the logistic and financial means to sustain all scenarios. They are not only spending on the operations in Yemen but also the world largest donor to all affected countries around the globe. Its true that there were some errors that claimed the lives on a few civilians but that is made sure not to be repeated. This is a war after all so causalities is expected. Iran wanted to create mini Hizbollah in Yemen but that is a red to the Saudis. Not on their backyard. Sorry if I miss any of the raised points.
 

RedViper

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Saudi Arabia has not asked Pakistan for anything. In fact, It was Pakistan that expressed interest to join the collation and when asked to it backed off. The GCC was not only able to take a collective measure to kick Iran out of Yemen but also pulled out a UN resolution 2216 that justifies its military operation. So far, the collation was able to librate 85% of Yemen territories that were under Houthi control. The Saudi Army has worked impressively to keep the border safe and execute missions inside Yemen itself. The Saudi Arabia along with the navy announced Yemen space and maritime restricted in a matter of 15 min. It has also worked impressively against Al-Qaeda and the operations are still ongoing. This is not an adventure rather the need of the hour thing to do. Saudis have the logistic and financial means to sustain all scenarios. They are not only spending on the operations in Yemen but also the world largest donor to all affected countries around the globe. Its true that there were some errors that claimed the lives on a few civilians but that is made sure not to be repeated. This is a war after all so causalities is expected. Iran wanted to create mini Hizbollah in Yemen but that is a red to the Saudis. Not on their backyard. Sorry if I miss any of the raised points.
Pakistan:

Pakistan is in the habit of 'volunteering' its forces for specific operations with the end goal being that some compensation is had by Islamabad. This is well understood by the UN, Saudi, and everyone else. I don't think there's anything wrong with this arrangement. After all, soldiers must eat too, but to say that Pakistan unilaterally volunteered for service and then withdrew when Riyadh placed religious restrictions (Sunnis only) on whatever force Islamabad could provide seems incorrect. Even in that event, Saudi Arabia's preconditions created a rupture in a long-standing agreement between the two countries and diplomatic efforts to salve this are ongoing.

Saudi Arabia is forever (and rightly) wary of Pakistan's relationships with Iran. The Pakistani Army is not the Saudi National Guard. It really does have soldiers from all over Pakistan in it and trying to divide it along confessional lines was a massive misstep. Rawalpindi took great relish in rejecting the notion of a Sunni only force and the GoP and Army got a lot of good public relations out of it.

UNSC Resolution 2216:

On this I concede the point that Saudi Arabia has largely been able to line up Western diplomatic attitudes against the Houthi rebels. This should not come as a surprise however. The Houthi, of course, do not have representation at the UN, and as we can see most famously from the vote to authorize the Korean War, it really does matter who has a seat at the UNSC.

What I think is more important is how little the West has done to help Saudi Arabia out in their mission. If D.C., London, Paris, etc. saw Yemen as a top priority to their interests or even as an easy win against ISIS or AQAP, they would have committed more fully. A better measure of Saudi's diplomatic prowess would have been to create a wider meta-coalition that more fully supported the Islamic coalition on the ground in Yemen.

In short, Saudi Arabia was able to paint a rebel force that looks an awful lot like ISIS to a CNN camera that enjoys its "Death to America" chants as much as anyone as the 'bad guys'. Congratulations, I guess.

The Situation in Yemen itself:

You are correct that Saudi Arabia and its partners have been able to liberate a lot of Yemen's total surface area, but not the parts of Yemen that the Houthi are determined to hold on to. The Revolutionary Council still controls what it needs to control to continue to the fight, namely its homelands and much of Sana'a. You are correct that Saudi Arabia and Egypt were able to establish full maritime dominance over Yemen's waters, but again, the Houthi have no navy. This is not an accomplishment. A similar situation applies to Yemen's airspace.

On the humanitarian front, there are wider issues than the accidental killing of civilians. Shortages of food, water, and medicine will continue to grow and exacerbate the underlying issues of the conflict. I'm not blaming Saudi Arabia for this, all of these things are natural results of war and unrest. I am saying that the longer this conflict persists, the harder it will be for Saudi Arabia to build Yemen back up to a state considered acceptable by the international community. If Saudi leaves Yemen after 'accomplishing their mission' in a very weak state, there will be little to no prophylaxis against a new terrorist or insurgent offensive.

I do not wish to insult Saudi Arabia. Their military was asked to do an impossible thing. Saudi Arabia's mission in Yemen, on a strategic level is three-fold: secure the border, tie the GCC closer together, and contain Iranian influence. My contention is that on the first goal, this has been a success. On the second, it has been a wash. On the third, while Saudi Arabia is distracted in Yemen and Syria, Iran is able to operate with a free hand everywhere else. The resources that Iran has to commit to keep the Houthi going are a pale fraction of what Saudi Arabia has to commit to counter Iranian influence. This is the dictionary definition of “bleeding someone white”.

I maintain that it is in fact impossible to fully defeat the Houthi rebels or AQAP/ISIS insurgents in Yemen. Saudi Arabia simply does not have the power or money to impose its will on Yemen indefinitely any more than the United States was able to in Iraq. The only solution is a political solution, and this will have to include Iran and the Houthi.

The problem is that I don't see any move that Saudi Arabia is making to support a political solution. What about the Oman plan? What is an exit strategy that solidifies Saudi's securing of its border and simultaneously weakening its regional arch-rival? That is why I don't understand Riyadh's strategic goals.
 

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