Current Affairs Middle East

Muslim World Unites Against Houthi Terrorism

Written by Shoaib

Saudi Arabia has answered the calls of Yemeni President Hadi to tackle the Houthi rebels who have pillaged much of Yemen over recent years. The formidable coalition, lead by Saudi Arabia, includes Jordan, Morocco, Qatar, Sudan, UAE, Bahrain, Egypt, Kuwait, Somalia, Turkey and Pakistan. The grand Sunni alliance named “Operation Storm of Resolve” was announced first on Wednesday night.

The Iranian backed Houthis had rejected peaceful talks and went further on to threaten the two holy mosques of Islam. The senior leader of the Houthi’s Abdul-Karim al-Khiwani, said “We will circle the Ka’bah next Hajj in Makkah as conquerors”. Khiwani was killed days later.

King Salman had recently been meeting many across the Muslim world and experts guessed something was in the works either against the Houthi terrorists in Yemen or the Islamic State terrorists in Syria and Iraq.

As the air-strikes weakened the Houthis, Iran responded with anger and went on to say “We will make all efforts to control the crisis in Yemen”. Iranian sponsorship of militias in the region has long been an unwelcome sight for Arabs and the move by the Saudi lead coalition couldn’t have come sooner. Top Houthi leadership killed in the air-strikes include Abdulkhaliq al-Houthi, Yousuf al-Madani, and Yousuf al-Fishi.

While Saudi Arabia has deployed 150,000 ground troops, Egypt announced four of their warships entered the Suez Canal along with the Pakistani Navy while UAE, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar and Jordan sent fighter jets to join 100 of Saudi Arabia’s jets. As of yet a ground troops have not been deployed however it has been reported that troops are on stand-by.

Who Are the Houthis?

The Houthi group, also known as Ansar Allah, began like most terror organisations as a peaceful group in 1990. It didn’t take long for them to take up militancy and reject the rule of law. Initially welcomed by the Shi’ite of Yemen they soon began terror attacks throughout Yemen.

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Al-Khiwani, senior leader of the Houthis, said ‘We will circle the Ka’bah next Hajj in Makkah as conquerors’

During the Arab Spring protests they claimed they would also remain peaceful, a promise which they broke soon after and began an aggressive military campaign in the north funded by Iran. In 2014, with the influx of new weapons from Iran, they increased their attacks.

While they claimed they wished for a peaceful resolution and were only trying to implement an interim government, they plunged Northern Yemen under their brutal control and continued their military dominance. The savage way in which they took over Sunni towns left many Yemenis in fear of where their next move would be.

Former President Saleh began losing control of the country after he made some bad military decisions which lead to resentment from the tribes and the Yemeni military. The Houthis took advantage of this and placed the Yemeni government on the back foot leading to Saleh to hand power to, the now President, Hadi.

President Hadi set up the National Dialogue to resolve the situation through diplomacy. However former President Saleh began meddling in affairs and attempting to regain power, which undermined President Hadi’s control over the military. The Houthis came to the negotiation table, they did not pause their military campaigns over Northern Yemen. They then went even further and began dictating conditions which the President rejected.

In January 2015 the Houthis began a massive attack on the capital, taking control of the Presidential palace and forcing President Hadi to sign a resignation. After President Hadi had signed it, he escaped to his stronghold in Aden and revoked his resignation heading to Saudi Arabia once the military action against the rebels had begun.

In March 2015 the Houthis became bolder and announced their intentions to attack the Grand Mosque in Makkah and the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah, saying they would conquer them.

Muslim World Unity Agreed

Today in Egypt, Arab leaders decided to set up a single united Arab army

Today in Egypt, Arab leaders decided to set up a single united Arab army

Today the Arab countries agreed to form a unified military force. In a step not seen before, Arab leaders agreed that their armies united held a better chance of dealing with regional instability. Experts predict the Yemen campaign is the beginning and will lead to dealing with IS in Iraq and Syria.

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan called on Iran and terrorist groups to leave Yemen. Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said any threat on Saudi Arabia is seen as a threat to Pakistan. The Yemeni President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi arrived in Riyadh for talks and today will go to Egypt. King Salman held talks via phone with the leaders of the countries involved in the grand Sunni coalition. President Obama has also leant support of U.S. intelligence to the operation.

The former Sunni Prime Minister of Lebanon Saad al-Hariri said “we all have good relations with Iran, but Iran cannot intervene with the way it is intervening in Yemen.”

The countries involved in the 'Decisive Storm' grand sunni coalition. Note: Somalia is missing from this map

The countries involved in the ‘Decisive Storm’ grand sunni coalition. Note: Somalia is missing from this map

Prophetic Narration Shared on Social Media

Experts are now speculating that the grand Sunni coalition’s next target is likely to be Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. This lead some Muslims on social media took this as a sign. There is a narration in which the Prophet Muhammad foretold a war in Yemen and Syria.

Abu Hawalah said that the Prophet, peace be upon him, said: “It will turn out that you will be armed troops, one in Syria, one in Yemen and one in Iraq.”
Ibn Hawalah said: “Choose for me, Messenger of Allah, if I reach that time.”
He, peace be upon him, replied: “Go to Syria, for it is Allah’s chosen land, to which his best servants will be gathered, but if you are unwilling, go to your Yemen, and draw water from your tanks, for Allah has on my account taken special charge of Syria and its people.”
-Abu Dawood

 

About the author

Shoaib

Writing is my passion. Pharmacy is my career. The truth is my resolve. My kids are my life. You can catch me on Facebook and Twitter!

29 Comments

  • SA Shoaib,

    Thank you for your insight into the Yemen situation.
    However there are a few issues I would like to raise. I feel this more of a reflection of emotional aspirations of your vision of what you call ‘the Muslim world’ with Saudi leadership at its forefront.
    The reality is the coalition of nation which you have termed the ‘Sunni alliance’ is far from that but rather an extension of Saudi proxies in the region. Egypt is an example where a secular based government is in place and Bahrain is a Shia majority country! It is clear that from a political perspective you have failed to see that clear interest from Egypt & Sudan stems from the geo-economical interests which lies in the Red Sea. As for Somalia joining the fight, no major news sources have reported this and the inclusion of Turkey into the so-called coalition is equally ridiculous. As for the rest of the states are part of the GCC alliance or and generally have strategic/military alliances.
    In addition to this, you seem to have dismissed the history behind the Houthi movement and its political aims and objectives across the last 11 years or so….and reduced it to an Iranian proxy without any real evidence apart from rhetoric. You may have forgotten that it was in the early 20th century that Saudi Arabia had an alliance with the former leader of the Zaidi’s and had an alliance under his Imamate. This indicates that the Saudi-Yemen relationship is one based on mutual interests, political alliegences and regional hegemony rather than a unified Sunni project.
    One could argue that $100s of million of dollars invested into Yemen by Saudi in the last two decades have lead the country into a failed state economically, politically and socially, with the Southern secessionist movement, AQAP and internal government parties clashing to yield a weak state with a frustrated people. The destabilisation of Yemen is as much of a case of Saudi mismanagement and bad policy making than anything else, and what we are seeing now is an concerted effort to re-consolidate the losses they have made in the region. Through this lens we see that you are led straight into the bait of playing into the rhetoric of the ‘sectarian war’ in which Saudi is the defender of Sunni Islam.
    This is completely defined by the use of one not properly referenced source, without any grading and introspection, used to Islamically justify the act of aggression from one Muslim people to another Muslim people. This is not only a lack of wisdom from your part but a statement that you will be accountable for as Muslims lives have been slaughtered in this context.
    I pray the best outcome for the Muslimeen of Yemen.
    Wasalam Alaykum

  • Interesting article however 3 points…

    1. Im not entirely sure that “http://shoebat.com/2015/03/26/saudi-arabia-and-nineteen-other-muslims-nations-are-making-full-out-war-against-yemen-to-protect-mecca-from-iranian-invasion/” is a very good source. Its run by so-called ex-muslim christian evangelicals.

    2. Saudi Arabia has been involved in fighting the Houthis before when Saleh was in power, in a sense this coalition isnt anything new

    3. It would be helpful if you could give some references to the quotes from the foreign leaders, there isnt much in the World News about this issue.

    Finally I think Abu Eesa Niamtuallah hit the nail on the head

    “The Saudi Ambassador stressed that the Saudis “will do anything necessary” to protect the people of the neighbouring Yemen. You’re thinking “hypocrisy!” and “where are they for the people of Syria?” and many other places. And you’d be right. This is all about self-interest, not protecting people. This is the nature of war today, and you can’t lipstick on a pig. This is the ugly reality of why people do what they do. However, the Houthis committed suicide in trying to take over Yemen, aligning themselves with the criminal state of Iran and trying to murder their way to power. Now they’ve forced the hand of those who have no choice but to protect *themselves* because nothing here is about helping one’s neighbours. Thus Saudi and its allies enter into a war. And naturally, war is full of hypocrisy. And this one will see huge deserts worth of hypocrisy all over it. But that doesn’t mean we withdraw our support for what is right. The Saudis can have their intentions, and so can we. We must stand with the truth and that is against Iran and its plans to destroy the entire region and recreate their own Safavid Empire and butchering all of Ahl’l-Sunnah along the way, whether in Iran, or in Syria or anywhere they can reach them with their claws. So, we wish there was no war in the first place. And we wish that Iran hadn’t supported genocide wherever it goes. And we wish that the response wasn’t from those who will never live down the hypocrisy and the betrayal of the region and the Ummah at large. But this defence of Yemen is correct, and it is needed, and we stand behind it, and so be it.

    Ya Allah, protect our Yemen, and protect Ahl’l-Sunnah throughout the world. Ameen.”

    Wasalaam

    • I was surprised by the comments of brother who does not favor the unity of the Muslim countries in the middle east and part of Asia. To me, the important and very significant thing is that they have commenced unity against the Houti or against the Iranian shiah impeding power to succumb the Ahlussunnah Waljamaah, I believe that in this process, truth will gradually rise and re-correct their cause and stand if anything wrong from them ( coalitions). Yes, Palestine is our priority as Muslims in the world but it should be put in a proper and careful understanding in battling against the modern Gog & Magog of this day, Iran have already exceeded beyond the limits of their jurisdiction by interfering a supposed to be a regional problems in Yemen, Syria and Iraq and even in Afghanistan. Praise be to Allah the giver of life and death, who gave the Saudi and Hijaz a good leader or king as you called it, that has a political well and ready to sacrifice his kingdom for the common and general welfare in sha Allah. We must set aside our differences and unite for Islam, as we are now approaching the last phase of our lives, we must supplicate for the emergence of the real mujahideen who can portray Islam on its proper context not as barbaric religion portrayed by nominal mujahideen in the other side of the oceans.Wabillahi Taufiq Walhidayah!

      • I personally believe we need to unite as a Muslim Ummah – Shi’ite and Sunni. The war against the Houthis is not about Shi’ite or Sunni, rather it is about an outside force (Iran) meddling in Arabian affairs and causing the bloodshed of the Yemeni people.

        • I don’t biliv in anything u say…..u are using your coatation to alarm or ignite peoples aggression against Islamic republic of Iran,stop the rubbish coatation,Saudis intention is to destroy Iran having had alliance with the united states,and I tell u,it will not work out,with every strategy I have studied and the trend of US involvement in the world crisis today.you talk of Iran bin the devil,and u talk of Palestine bin the Saudis priority,then u are talking mistake….Iran has bin defending Palestinian a long time ago and they are still doing that,and The US is seeing them has a threat to the state they create and by all means they want to anhilate them,and they are using u as a machinery for the destruction,it will not work out,let me tell u so that u will have a firm knowledge of it,Iran is more than what you think,Iran is playing a vital role in the world today as to put check to countries like the US,their are states like that that can not act as puppet as Saudi does,you have to let those countries be,bcos if u do not,you are working towards partial destruction……..then the coalition they constitute will not last long,even if they do,they won’t have effect as to y they were formed,bcos if they are found unuseful by their masters(US),they will make sure the coalition melts down so as not to generate into threat for them in the future and this is their way and has bin their way and u refuse to understand and recognise fact… I am sure u remember the earlier coalition against Is real and how they were defeated,who defeated them -US- Is real coalition,and this still exist and they are aware of the possible Saudi coalition futures dream………instead for you to unite with other Muslim sects as the leader n keeper of holy mosque,u causes trouble every where ,sponsored alqaeda gone mad,ISIS gone crazy,Alshabab gone Idiot and bokoharam gone mad,you and your ally directly and indirectly sponsor these devilish group and constitute nuisanse to the world,they gone awry and you never expected them of,they is the evil path……..you will gain nothing from igniting war against Iran,try to find a common ground at wish you can unite not war…..Islam is a loving religion not blood sucking as u all make it tagged,and you all have to think well before you act always think of the future promises of your actions….and be ready prepared for a reduced coalition,a kind of fragments from this your so called coalition that will become threat to Saudi and the world cause part of them will think they are bin treated wrongly n go a-wire like ISIS from the Serian rebel group…….

          • I’m not asking you to believe me.

            Houthi terrorist terrorised Yemen, why don’t you condemn them? Just because you share a sect with them? Stop your sectarianism

        • Now you’ve lost me. So the Muslim Umma should unite, yet the Arab world should be shielded from interaction with non-Arab Muslims such as Iranians? Iran is no outsider to the region, nor to Yemen, hence it is as much entitled as any Arab country to establish relations with political groups in that country. Certainly Iran has had closer historical ties with Yemen than distant Saudi coalition partners such as Morocco ever will.

          By the way, it is odd when an advocate of the Saudi regime invokes the pan-Arab cause only when it suits Riyad’s agenda, forgetting how Saudi Arabia worked to undermine pan-Arab nationalist leaders such as Jamal Abdel Nasser.

          As for not meddling in other people’s affairs, would you level the same accusation against Saudi Arabia, which has been involving itself in non-Arab, Indo-Iranian countries such as Afghanstan or Pakistan? Not to mention Riyad’s cultural expansionism in Muslim communities the world over, spend billions of petrodollars to fund the spread of its local wahhabi brand of Islam from North America to East Asia?

          Last but not least, Saudi Arabia has a record of invading Yemen. In the 1930’s, the kingdom even illegally annexed three Northern Yemeni provinces. Arab solidarity, Saudi style!

          • Iran has began siding on the opposite side of other Muslim nations. This is why the Muslim unity does not include them.

            If France aligned itself against all Western nations, Western unity can still be achieved. Similarly Iran’s exclusion from Muslim unity does not prevent Muslim unity.

      • Brother kingdom is not acceptable in Islam. So when something is unacceptable or not jaiz then everything coming or arising from it not right and far from haq or truth. Please remember.

    • Salaam Majid,

      1. My source was not the website but rather a Saudi TV station

      2. Yes it isn’t anything new in that sense but before this we have not seen Muslim countries come together like this

      3. Regarding the quote you shared, I agree with what he has said. Ameen to his dua.

      • Sa. With respect I hardly believe A Saudi tv station, Comtrolled by the corrupt state can hardly be considered reliable.

        • Ws. Would you believe a Western TV station controlled by Rupert Murdoch?

          Personally I believe them before Murdoch

    • “We must stand with the truth and that is against Iran and its plans to destroy the entire region and recreate their own Safavid Empire and butchering all of Ahl’l-Sunnah along the way, whether in Iran, or in Syria or anywhere they can reach them with their claws. So, we wish there was no war in the first place. And we wish that Iran hadn’t supported genocide wherever it goes. ”

      What nonsense. Right, Iran is so keen on “butchering all of Ahl al-Sunna”, that Sunni Iranians are living in peace with their Shia brothers in the Islamic Republic of Iran, their security and religious freedom guaranteed by Iranian authorities. Which cannot be said of Shias in wahhabi-ruled monarchies such as Saudi Arabia or Bahrain.

      Iran is so keen on “butchering all Sunnis”, that for over 35 years, it has been the only Muslim country to consistently assist the Palestinian Resistance (made of Sunni Muslims) against zionist occupiers, to save Sunni Bosnian Muslims from genocide, to support Sunni Kurdish Muslims in Iraq against Daesh, to help Sunni Afghan groups and leaders (such as martyr Ahmad Shah Masoud) against Soviet invaders, and so on.

      As for Syria or Yemen, the only genocidal force out there are takfiri terrorist groups such as Daesh, who target people simply for no other reason than their religious affiliations. The Syrian government and army, whether you like it or not, have lots of Sunni Muslims in their ranks, so does the coalition led by Ansarallah, so they are not fighting at war with “all Sunnis”. Trying to impose a sectarian narrative on these conflicts won’t cut it.

      You need to turn your back to the venomous sectarianist propaganda spread by the Saudi regime and like-minded salafi groups such as Al-Qaida or Daesh, since you obviously have no clue abour Islamic Iran and its policies.

      • Al Qaeda and Daesh are not salafi.

        There is not a single sunni mosque in all of Tehran. So much for Iran being nice to Sunnis. They persecute them and butcher them wherever they get a chance. Try keeping your name Umar in Iran and see how nice they are then.

  • What caused the houthis to react like this? Did I say react? Yes, because this is their reaction to decades of oppression by the sunni leadership, the yemeni ruling class along with the saudi monarchy has been at the forefront of alienating the shias from the rest of yemen, they were not allowed any political representation (in their own country), they were treated as foreigners and were at times banned from calling themselves as yemeni. If they were treated as human beings (in the case of the government, nobody in yemen is treated as humans) they wouldnt feel the need to take over the country to save their people.

    • President Saleh definitely came down far too heavy handed in his autocratic crackdown, this is why during this time even Yemenis spoke up for Houthis. However when they pillages cities they showed they are no better than Saleh – and their recent friendship shows this as well.

  • Hello
    I think you like to say lies to yourself and others . As all we know Saudi supporting terrorist groups like Isis and others in region . Houthies are fighting for free Yemen . You want Yemeni people to be a dog of USA and saudi Arabia . It won’t be happen .

    • If Saudi like ISIS then why are they bombing them since they formed?

      Houthis have pillaged and killed hundreds and thousands of Yemenis.

      • You are very biased and you look at things with two crossed eyes:
        1. Your hatred to Shia makes you hate Houthis who are Zaidis (middle sect between Sunni and Shia). Ok, if Saudi hates Iran, why do not they go and bomb it.
        2. Since when Saudis (not legitimate) are the protectors of the regimes legitimacy ( Sunni Dr. Mursi’s case).
        3. If Saudis want to kill Houthi ( let us say 5% of the Yemeni people), why do they target Yemeni civilians and infrastructures. And above of all killing the Sunnis (70%) of hunger.

        I think that you should keep sorting your stuff in the pharmacy and do not participate in the killing of all innocent people.

        • I don’t “hate shia”. I am reporting on Houthi terrorists who happen to be Shia.

          How are you in any position to pass judgement on the legitimacy of a legitimate country? Who are you?

          Saudi has not targetted civilians, this is a lie.

          I think you need to get your facts before participating in sectarianism

          • Yeah, they don’t target civilians, they just end up slaughtering loads of them. Muslim kids.

  • “Initially welcomed by the Shi’ite of Yemen they soon began terror attacks throughout Yemen.”

    Ansarallah aren’t merely welcomed by Shia Yemenis, they enjoy support from countless Sunni Yemenis as well.

    And what “terror attacks” are you referring to? It is easy to throw around accusations and catch phrases, to substantiate them with proper evidence is an entirely different matter though. Ansarallah are unlike Western- and PGCC-funded takfiri terrorists who set Syria and Iraq on fire while proudly documenting their atrocities and flooding the entire internet with them.

    ###

    “they plunged Northern Yemen under their brutal control and continued their military dominance. The savage way in which they took over Sunni towns left many Yemenis in fear of where their next move would be.”

    What exactly is “brutal” about Ansarallah’s control over Northern Yemen, and what “savage way” are you talking about? You are confusing Ansarallah with lunatic, Saudi-funded terrorists in Syria, Iraq, Pakistan and so on, who chop people’s heads off, burn prisoners alive, document it all on video and take utmost pride in it.

    As for your insistence on “Sunni” this and “Shia” that, I thought you oppose sectarianism? Yet you interpret many aspects of the conflict in such sectarian terms.

    ###

    “Experts are now speculating that the grand Sunni coalition’s next target is likely to be Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.”

    Good one… not. Saudi aggression has merely empowered Daesh and AQAP in Yemen, just as it did in Syria, Iraq and elsewhere. Whereas AQAP presence used to be limited to the deserts of Eastern Yemen before the Saudi invasion, today the terrorist group freely roams the streets of Aden, Daesh commits another twin attack against mosques in Sanaa, and so on. While bombing Yemen into oblivion, and killing thousands of children in the process, the Saudi regime has not once targetted Daesh or Al-Qaida. Which comes as no surprise, given that both AQAP and Daesh have been fighting side by side with so-called Hadi loyalists against the revolutionary people of Yemen.

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