News Analysis |
Saudi Arabia has berated and blamed Iran for the missile attack by Houthi rebels in the Saudi capital, Riyadh on Saturday, terming it as an “act of war”.Yemeni Houthi rebels took responsibility for the attack. The Long-range ballistic missile traveled more than 800 kilometers before the missile was intercepted over northeast Riyadh.
The attack is tipped to change the nature of protracted and destructive war in Yemen and intensify the bitter animosity between the bastions of the Muslim Ummah: Iran and Saudi Arabia.
The war started when Houthi rebels took control of the capital Sanaa and began making incursions in the south towards the country’s third-biggest city, Aden in 2014. The Saudi-led coalition of Sunni states militarily intervened in 2015 when Iran-backed Houthis dislodged the government of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi.
MBS’ recent anti-corruption drive is being seen as more of an effort to consolidate power by eliminating potential threats to his meteoric rise.
In a statement released by Saudia’s premier news agency, SPA while denouncing the blatant military aggression by the Iranian trained and armed Houthi rebels, said that the inspection of the debris confirms that the Islamic Republic manufactured and supplied the rebels with the missile.
The Airstrikes by the Saudi forces have often taken out innocent Yemenis.According to various estimates, more than 10,000 people have been killed mostly due to the relentless use of air power by Riyadh.The UN Human Rights Office has documented 13,829 civilian casualties in Yemen, including 5,110 people killed till August this year.
however, the coalition insists that it hits legitimate targets. The Houthis have also hurled dozens of missiles into Saudi territory since the outbreak of the war, to include a ballistic missile shot down near Mecca in July this year.
The statement read that Iran has violated the United Nations Security Council Resolution 2216 which bars states from supplying arms to the groups. “Iran’s role and its direct command of its Houthi proxy in this matter constitutes a clear act of aggression that targets neighboring countries, and threatens peace and security in the region and globally,” the SPA statement read.
Korbyko said that escalating the Yemen war is neither in the interests of Riyadh nor Tehran.Korybko, however, was critical of the US’ role in the issue.
While announcing a temporary halt in air and ground operations, the statement said that the smuggling of missiles into Yemen will be thoroughly investigated. “The Coalition’s Command considers this a blatant act of military aggression by the Iranian regime, and could rise to be considered as an act of war against the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia,” the statement read.
The Yemen crisis is not deemed as of the main crises in the Middle East. This is also evidenced by the US limiting its involvement to providing logistical and intelligence support to Saudi Arabia. Watchers are concerned with the collateral damage that this war is inflicting in shape of deaths of hapless civilians.
But with Houthis carrying out a brazen attack which according to Yemen’s defense chief “shook the capital” the war will fester and so will the Saudi-Iranian rivalry.Earlier, Saudi Coalition, without naming Iran accused it of being behind the attack.”This hostile and random act by the Houthis proves that one of the terrorism-supporting countries in the region supports the Houthis,” the statement said.
President Trump, who is believed to be treading toward war with Iran did not miss out an opportunity to take that country on. He said:“A shot was just taken by Iran, in my opinion, at Saudi Arabia.”
Analysts believe that this conflagration of the Yemen war was impending. With the tables turning in Iran’s favor in Syria and Iraq, the support for the Houthis redoubled.
The attack is tipped to change the nature of protracted and destructive war in Yemen and intensify the bitter animosity between the bastions of the Muslim Ummah.
However, the intensification is being seen differently by eminent Russian analyst, Andrew Korybko. While talking to GVS, Korybko said: “Saudi Arabia is being drawn deeper into the Yemeni quagmire after the Houthis’ missile strike against Riyadh, which conflicting reports say was either intercepted outside the city or ended up striking the airport.”
Korybko who is also closely following the internal political squabbles in the Kingdom pointed out:”The Saudis’ accusations that Iran was somehow involved with this are politically motivated and fail to account for the Saleh-era missiles already in the country and the Houthis’ alliance with the former President’s forces.”
Bringing his vast knowledge of hybrid wars in the region, Korbyko said that escalating the Yemen war is neither in the interests of Riyadh nor Tehran.Korybko, however, was critical of the US’ role in the issue. He said:” It’s in American interests to see Riyadh further bogged down in this quagmire so as to diminish the military’s loyalty to Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman, thus making it easier for him to be destabilized and ultimately overthrown as revenge for his recent “deep state” coup against the pro-US royalists.”
Saudi Arabia has berated and blamed Iran for the missile attack by Houthi rebels in the Saudi capital.
Korybko also pointed toward the role of the UAE in the Yemeni mix.He said:”The UAE benefits from a stronger Saudi commitment to the conflict because it takes some of the pressure off of their forces and also weakens their neighboring “ally”, which is in reality seen as a rival by Abu Dhabi and whose undermining is a grand strategic goal because it could relatively increase the Emirates’ regional importance to the US.”
MBS’ recent anti-corruption drive is being seen as more of an effort to consolidate power by eliminating potential threats to his meteoric rise. The 32-year old’s decision to jump in the Yemen war in 2015 is an unpopular one and the decision to elongate it may play in the hands of his detractors.However, his reference to the Iranian Revolution as a cause of extremism in the region, many believe that even MBS will keep the pot boiling with Tehran.