Houthi terrorists in Yemen are clearly celebrating US President Joe Biden’s decision of being taken off the terrorist list. They have already increased the frequency of terrorist attacks, mainly targeting Saudi Arabia. Biden’s decision certainly has also made terror-patron Iran extremely delighted as Tehran has been continuously extending various forms of support and assistance to the Houthi terrorists. This decision has simply re-energized terrorism of Houthis, which would certainly pose grave threat to the national security of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
On February 5, kingpins of Houthis terrorists in mountains of Yemen had welcomed news from Washington knowing Biden administration has decided to remove them from the list of foreign terrorist entity.
Houthis were put on terrorist list by the former US president, Donald Trump. Because of their designation as terrorists, it made it difficult to deliver humanitarian aid through areas they control, so the Biden administration wanted to make them not terrorists. For the Houthi leadership and their Iranian backers, this meant a new round of attacks and that a military offensive would be planned.
Ever since the announcement of removal came from Washington, Houthis are continuing drone attacks on Saudi Arabia and has also increased fighting in Yemen. It seems as if Joe Biden is no longer going to back an offensive war on Houthis in Yemen, despite the fact of Washington’s supports of Riyadh’s right to self-defense.
In fact, Biden’s decision did not surprise those who already know him to be critical of Saudi Arabia and sympathetic to Yemeni terrorists. It may be mentioned here that, Yemen is divided between the Iranian-backed Houthis and another group, which is loyal to the Yemeni government.
Yemen is witnessing war since 2015, one year after Islamic State (ISIS) had emerged. Now Houthis have effective drones and ballistic missiles, supplied by Iranian regime. It seems that Iran has possibly decided to increase Houthi attacks on Saudi Arabia with the agenda of achieving hegemonic advantage in the region and emerge as an unstoppable monster.
According to media reports, on February 7, reports indicated that Riyadh intercepted four Houthi drones. On February 8, US Central Command said it would continue to support Riyadh defending itself. On February 9, more drones were intercepted by Saudi Arabia. On February 10, the Houthis said they targeted Abha Airport in southern Saudi Arabia, near Yemen. On February 11, another interception of a Houthi attack was reported. On February 12, in the wake of the US finally taking them off the list, more reports of attacks on Abha and King Khalid Air Base in Saudi Arabia were reported. And, such notorious terrorist acts are continuing.
A Saudi media outlet said: “The attack by an explosive-laden drone was the fourth such incident involving the Iran-backed Houthis in southern Saudi Arabia in as many days”.
According to military analysts, although there were large numbers of drone attacks in 2019, the recent attacks grew in sophistication. Houthis use so-called Qasef drone or Qasef2K, which is similar to Iran’s Ababil drone. It is thought to have a range of more than 150 kilometers. It is more like a German V-1 rocket in that it is packed with explosives and flies into its target using preset coordinates and a gyroscope.
Military analysts said, the gyroscopes from the Qasef-1 were found and documented, linking them to other Iranian drones that have turned up in places as far away as Sudan and Afghanistan and parts of drones that have been intercepted. Gyroscopes link them to the Ababil-3 and Shahed-123 drones manufactured by Iran. These are V10 and V9 gyroscopes.
According to Newsweek report, in mid-January 2021, aerial photos showed a previously never seen or documented ‘Shaheed-136 drone in Yemen. This was a flying-wing design linked perhaps to Iran’s attempt to reverse engineer the RQ-170 Sentinel that was hot down in 2011.
Iran copied the US drone and made the Saegheh-2 and Shahed-171 Simorgh drones. One of these types penetrated Israeli airspace in February 2018, flown from Syria’s T-4 base. Israel shot it down.
The use of drones by the Houthis has threatened Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Saudi Arabia should win this battle against Iran-backed Houthi terrorists. It is definitely Saudi’s war on terror. International community needs to extend fullest support in the battle against Iran and its Houthi cronies. It is essential for the regional and also global peace.