Saturday, December 12, 2015

The Houthis Staged a Major Comeback While Nobody Was Looking

As much as it's a matter of choosing between the lesser of two evils, I've been rooting for the Yemen government in the Yemeni civil war, in part because the official Houthi logo/motto is:

"God is Great, Death to America, Death to Israel, Curse on the Jews, Victory to Islam."

This is on their flag, which means it's flying over the parliament building in Sana'a right now. So yeah, we're rooting for the government.

Bad news, though. The Houthis have not only halted the government's advance (remember back when the government broke out of Aden and started marching north?), but have totally reversed gains and each week are gobbling up more territory as they push back towards Aden.

It had looked for a while like there might be a tough stalemate in which the Houthis kept their "prime" territory with lots of supporters and lost the rest, and then they would make a deal of some sort, but...

Well, it's looking bad.

Here's October 12th:

Here's today:

I'm actually quite shocked; I'm not certain how a truly committed Saudi Arabia could be losing this war, but the casualty numbers are so low (maybe 2500 total soldiers killed across all groups?) that they suggest the Saudi commitment wasn't what I thought. Haven't yet done my research.

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