Breaking: Houthi air defenses shoot down Saudi Tornado warplane over north Yemen

 

BEIRUT, LEBANON (5:27 P.M.) – Houthi rebels have shot down a Saudi warplane whilst it was conducting an attack over northern Yemen. The downed aircraft is of a Western European Cold War-era design.

Reports are emerging that a Panavia Tornado of the Saudi Royal Air Force has been shot down by Houthi air defenses whilst it was on a combat mission in the skies over Saada province in northern Yemen

 

Initial reports of the aircraft downing did not clarify what kind of warplane had been shot out of the sky, leaving mystery as to whether it belonged to the Saudi or Emirati air forces.

 

However, the identification of the aircraft as a Panavia Tornado means that it must belong to the Saudi Royal Air Force since it is the only regional air force to use such a warplane.

At the present time, the type of air defense weapon used by Houthi fighters has not been mentioned.

The Panavia Tornado is a joint British-West German-Italian strike fighter aircraft design originally entering service with Western European air forces in 1979.

 

HOUTHI FORCES DOWNED SAUDI-LED COALITION WARPLANE IN YEMEN’S SA’ADA – REPORTS

On January 7, the Houthis’ air defense forces reportedly shot down a twin-engine Panavia Tornado multirole aircraft belonging to the Saudi-led coalition in the province of Sa’ada in Yemen.

Yemen’s Arabic-language al-Masirah television network reported that the warplane was downed with a surface-to-air missile over Kitaf wa al-Boqe’e district of the province.

| الدفاعات الجوية تسقط طائرة حربية تابعة لقوى العدوان السعودي الأمريكي في أجواء محافظة صعدة

In January 2018, the Saudi-led coalition continued its intense bombing campaign in Yemen targeting military and civilian infrastructure controlled by the Houthis across the country. Considering that the Houthis lack air-defense capabilities every lose of a warplane is a significant blow to the public image of Saudi-led forces.

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Over 700 Yemeni Civilians Killed and Wounded by US-backed Saudi Airstrikes in December

Over 700 Yemeni Civilians Killed and Wounded by US-backed Saudi Airstrikes in December

EDITOR’S CHOICE | 31.12.2017

Over 700 Yemeni Civilians Killed and Wounded by US-backed Saudi Airstrikes in December

Bill Van AUKEN

The US-backed Saudi monarchy and its allied Gulf oil sheikdoms have dramatically escalated their bombing campaign against Yemen, the poorest nation in the Middle East, killing scores of civilians within the last few days.

In the bloodiest of the airstrikes, Saudi warplanes targeted a crowded marketplace in Yemen’s southwestern Taiz province on Tuesday, killing 54 civilians.

While coverage of the bloodbath by the US and Western media has been scarce, Yemen’s Al Masirah television network published photos on its website showing the market’s bombed-out shops and the dismembered remains of slaughtered civilians. It reported that body parts had been thrown hundreds of yards from the blast sites.

Among the dead were at least eight children. Another 32 people were wounded in the bombing, including six children.

On the same day, warplanes attacked a farm in the al-Tuhayta district of Yemen’s western Hodeida province killing an entire family of 14, including women and children.

Yemeni sources reported that Saudi and allied warplanes carried out more than 45 airstrikes on Wednesday targeting several Yemeni cities and killing at least another six civilians, including a family of five whose house was targeted in the port city of Hodeida.

According to the Al Masirah television network the number of Yemenis killed and wounded in Saudi airstrikes since the beginning of December had risen to 600 before the latest round of casualties beginning on Tuesday.

This bloody new phase in the more than 1,000-day-old war by the wealthy and reactionary Arab monarchies against impoverished Yemen is driven by the House of Saud’s frustration over its inability to shift the military stalemate and made possible by the unrestrained support from Riyadh’s Western allies, principally the US and Britain.

The stepped up bombing campaign has come partly in response to the failure of a Saudi-backed coup by the former Yemeni dictator Ali Abdullah Saleh against his erstwhile allies, the Houthi rebel movement. The abortive effort ended in Saleh’s death and the routing of his supporters earlier this month.

Riyadh has also been shaken by the firing of missiles from Yemen targeting both the international airport and the House of Saud’s royal palace. Both missiles were brought down without causing any casualties.

Washington has long relied upon the Saudi monarchy as a pillar of reaction in the Arab world, arming it to the teeth and in the process reaping vast profits for US arms corporations.

During his trip to Saudi Arabia in May, US President Donald Trump signed a $110 billion arms deal with the Saudi regime. While the agreement represented the single largest arms deal in US history, it represented a continuity with the policy pursued by the Democratic administration of Barack Obama, which had struck a $29 billion agreement to sell F-15s the Saudis—representing the previous largest single US arms deal—and had a total of $100 billion worth of weaponry slated for sale to the kingdom.

In addition to providing the warplanes, bombs and missiles being used to slaughter Yemeni civilians, Washington is a direct accomplice and participant in the assault on Yemen, a flagrant war crime that has produced the greatest humanitarian catastrophe on the face of the planet. US Air Force planes are flying refueling missions that keep Saudi fighter bombers in the air, while US intelligence officers are assisting in the targeting of airstrikes and US warships are backing a Saudi sea blockade that is part of a barbaric siege of the country aimed at starving its population into submission.

While an estimated 13,600 civilians have lost their lives to the US-backed Saudi military campaign launched in March of 2015, that death toll has been massively eclipsed by the number of lives lost to hunger and disease resulting from the destruction of basic water and sanitary infrastructure, along with factories, farms, medical facilities and other vital resources, and the blockading of food, medicine and humanitarian supplies.

Almost three years into the war, 21.2 million people, 82 percent of the population, are in need of humanitarian assistance, lacking access to food, fuel and clean water,. An estimated 8 million people are on the brink of starvation, while soaring food prices have placed essential commodities out of reach for all but the wealthiest layers of Yemeni society.

The International Committee of the Red Cross announced last week that the number of cholera cases had topped 1 million, the worst epidemic in modern history, while the country has also been hit by an outbreak of diphtheria, a disease that has been almost entirely eradicated in the rest of the world.

The apocalyptic scale of the human suffering in Yemen has moved some in the West to make timid criticisms of the Saudi regime. Thus, French President Emmanuel Macron reportedly called Saudi King Salman on December 24 to advocate a “complete lifting’ of the blockade of Yemen. Macron made no move, however, to amend the 455 million euro arms deal struck with Riyadh by his predecessor, François Hollande, providing weapons being used to murder Yemeni civilians.

Similarly, the United Nations humanitarian coordinator Jamie McGoldrick pointed to the latest mass casualties resulting from Saudi bombings to condemn the “complete disregard for human life that all parties, including the Saudi-led coalition, continue to show in this absurd war.”

The reality is that the overwhelming majority of deaths have been caused by illegal Saudi aggression. The war, from the standpoint of both Riyadh and Washington, moreover, is not “absurd,” but rather part of a broader regional strategy being pursued by US imperialism to prepare for a military confrontation with Iran, which has emerged as an obstacle to the drive to assert American hegemony over the oil-rich Middle East.

Finally, the New York Times published an editorial Thursday saturated with hypocrisy and deceit. Titled “The Yemen Crucible,” it accuses the Trump administration of applying “a double standard” to the catastrophe in Yemen by denouncing alleged Iranian arms support for the Houthi rebels, while “having nothing bad to say” about the Saudi bombing campaign.

The Times, a mouthpiece for the Democratic Party establishment, raises the possibility that Iran “could be in violation” of a UN Security Council resolution barring it from the export of missiles and other weapons, and guilty of “escalating a crisis” that could lead to war with Saudi Arabia.

Referring to the recent performance of the US ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, who appeared at a US military hangar in Washington with what was claimed to be debris from an Iranian-supplied missile fire by the Houthi rebels at Riyadh, the newspaper acknowledged that the presentation recalled the “weapons of mass destruction” speech delivered by then US Secretary of State Colin Powell to the UN Security Council in preparation for the US invasion of Iraq.

Of course the Times supported that war of aggression in 2003 and became one of the main propagandists of the “weapons of mass destruction” lie used to justify it.

The editorial utters not a word of criticism of US arms sales to the Saudi regime—much less about the Obama administration’s initiation of Washington’s support for the war on Yemen—and concludes with claims of seeing signs that the Trump administration is exerting “constructive influence on the Saudis.”

These lies and omissions make clear that if and when Washington embarks on a potentially world catastrophic war against Iran, the “newspaper of record” will once again provide its services as a propaganda organ for American militarism.

wsws.org

More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]

30-12-2017 | 14:17

More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]
More than a 1000 Days of War on Yemen [Photos]


Source: The Atlantic, Edited by website team

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Yemen Conflict: 70+ Martyred by Saudi Warplanes Strikes

16-12-2017 | 11:13

More than 70 Yemeni people had been martyred in airstrikes by Saudi warplanes on the impoverished country of Yemen, reports said Friday.

Saudi fighterjet

Yemen’s al-Masirah television network said the Saudi warplanes bombed a market in the Mawza district in the west of Taiz province on Friday. According to a preliminary count, the airstrike left eight people dead and 15 others injured.

At least 15 people also lost their lives in Saudi air raids on the northern province of Saada. According to al-Masirah, 12 of the victims were martyred in two airstrikes that hit a market and a car in the Munabbih district. The three other victims, including two women, were martyred in earlier air raids on the districts of al-Dhaher and Shada. The aerial attacks also left five people injured in the Northern Province.

Medics and security sources also reported on Friday that Saudi air raids claimed the lives of 28 people around Yemen’s west coast.

Another 20 people, mostly women and children, had been martyred by Saudi airstrikes in al-Hudaydah Province, in Yemen’s northwest.

The airstrikes were carried out against residential areas on Friday. Another 10 people were injured.

Since March 2015, Saudi Arabia has been incessantly pounding Yemen in an attempt to crush the popular Ansarullah movement and reinstate the former Yemeni president, Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, a staunch ally of the Riyadh regime.

More than 12,000 people have been martyred since the onset of the campaign. Much of the Arabian Peninsula country’s infrastructure, including hospitals, schools and factories, has been reduced to rubble due to the war. The Saudi-led war has also triggered a deadly cholera epidemic across Yemen.

Source: News Agencies, Edited by website team

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Foreign Policy magazine: A UN report confirms the failure of the Saudi alliance in Yemen

 

For almost two and a half years, Saudi Arabia and its allies, equipped with US-made aircraft and precision guided missiles, have launched one of the most advanced air force campaigns against one of the world’s poorest countries.

But the military supremacy of the Saudi-led coalition has brought no victory in Yemen. Instead, it has strengthened Yemen’s political disintegration and deepened a humanitarian crisis that has plunged the country to the brink of famine and fueled widespread public discontent in response to major human losses, according to a confidential UN report.

“The impact of the Saudi-led and tactical air campaign is minimal on the ground and only increases and intensifies civilian resistance,” the UN Security Council panel said. It also helps to “consolidate” the military alliance between the Houthis and former Yemeni leader Ali Abdullah Saleh, who controls 13 of the country’s provinces, including the capital, Sanaa.

The chaos has created fertile ground for extremists, including the organization of the Islamic state and al Qaeda, and the Security Council’s panel of experts believes it “looks forward to terrorist attacks against targets in the West.”

The report notes that al-Qaeda has enhanced its capability and has been able to launch attacks on navalships. The Commission noted the seizure by al Qaeda of explosive devices and a radar survey from the port of Mukalla last year. Al Qaeda’s local leader Qasem al-Rimi recently released a video encouraging his supporters to launch “individual wolves” attacks against targets in the West.

As Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi, his authority has become at stake. Its power has been undermined by militias financed and controlled by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, and the countries fighting to bring him back to power.

Many of Hadi’s senior ministers split and formed a separate transitional council with a vision of southern Yemen. According to the UN Council of Experts, the council has enough support within the Yemeni army (pro-coalition) “to pose a major threat to President Hadi’s ability to govern in the south.”

“The authority of the legitimate government, weak or absent in many parts of the country, has already eroded significantly this year,” the report said. “The ability of the legitimate government to effectively manage the eight provinces it controls is in question,” the UN report said.

In an interview with former US diplomats in Riyadh last month, Saudi officials claimed the alliance was “continuing modest progress in several areas” and claimed that Sanaa was within the range of artillery and that they would launch an attack to seize the city and port of Hodeidah.

However, UN experts seem concerned that if the alliance and its supporters launch a military offensive against Hodeidah and Sanaa, it could destroy the international effort to provide humanitarian aid and lead to a bloodbath in Yemen’s largest city.

The experts’ report also said that the influence of the Houthis and Saleh coalition is gradually diminishing. But they expected the coalition to remain intact in the absence of a major shift in the balance of power in Yemen.

Despite Saudi Arabia’s takeover of the Mukhaba, the Houthi-Saleh alliance still retains its pre-eminence a year ago and controls 80% of the Yemeni population.

The Houthis and their allies have also intensified their attacks on coalition naval vessels, including the March attack on a Saudi Royal Navy frigate by a rocket full of explosives. They may have attacked an Emirati naval vessel with an anti-tank missile in June.

According to the UN report, a strong example of the rupture of Hadi’s power is the failure of his military commander to take control of Aden airport. On April 27, Brig. Gen. Mahran al-Qubati, commander of the fourth presidential brigade, failed to deploy his roster at the airport in order to ensure the security of the Mahdi and his disunity from Emiratis.

Another example was Abu al-Abbas, a Salafist militia leader in Taiz who received direct financial and financial support from the United Arab Emirates, and his forces under the command of the army’s chief of staff, Maj. Gen. Muhammad Ali al-Maqdisi, loyal to Hadi. Other Salafist leaders have established their own armed militia groups and are financially and militarily supported by members of the Saudi alliance.

At the same time, the United Arab Emirates has funded and trained many local security forces, including the elite al-Hadramiya forces, which were established to counter al-Qaeda in Yemen.

“The authority of the legitimate government is challenged by the proliferation of militia groups, many of which receive direct funding and assistance from Saudi Arabia or the United Arab Emirates,” the UN panel said.

“The use of proxy forces, operating outside a government hierarchy, creates a gap in accountability for gross violations that could constitute war crimes,” the commission said.

The committee also confirmed press reports and Human Rights Watch that the UAE and its agents in Yemen, according to the committee, had set up a network of secret prisons in Yemen. The UN committee says it has “credible information that the United Arab Emirates has forcibly hid two people in Aden for eight months” and mistreated detainees in Mukalla.

“The team has launched investigations into a civilian site used as a detention facility where a group of civilians, including an activist and a doctor, are being detained,” the UN report said..

 

UK, US Play ’Crucial Role’ In Creating Conditions for Spread of Cholera in Yemen

Local Editor

Britain and the US played “a crucial role” in creating conditions conducive to the catastrophic spread of cholera in Yemen, according to authors of a letter published in The Lancet.

 

Yemen Cholera Outbreak


An analysis by the researchers at London’s Queen Mary University found that the two-year military campaign by a Saudi-led coalition has received logistical and political support from the UK and the US. British companies have continued to sell weapons to Saudi Arabia despite growing concern about civilian casualties.

In this respect, researchers Jonathan Kennedy, Andrew Harmer and David McCoy wrote that: “Saudi-led airstrikes have destroyed vital infrastructure, including hospitals and public water systems, hit civilian areas, and displaced people into crowded and insanitary conditions. A Saudi-enforced blockade of imports has caused shortages of, among other things, food, medical supplies, fuel and chlorine, and restricted humanitarian access.”

Kennedy said in an additional statement: “Saudi Arabia is an ally of the UK and USA. American and British companies supply Saudi Arabia with huge amounts of military equipment and their armed forces provide logistical support and intelligence.

“This backing has made the Saudi-led airstrikes and blockade possible, and therefore the UK and USA have played a crucial role in creating conditions conducive to the spread of cholera.”

In June, UNICEF and the WHO released a statement saying that Yemen was “facing the worst cholera outbreak in the world”.

Earlier this week, the WHO said more than half a million people in Yemen had been infected with cholera since the epidemic broke out in April, as the country struggled to cope with 5,000 new cases a day.

It said at least 1,975 people have now died from the acute diarrheal infection caused by ingestion of contaminated food or water. Last month, the organization estimated that around half of cases and a quarter of the dead were children under the age of 15.

Last week, a draft UN report accused the Saudi military coalition of killing hundreds of children in Yemen.

Source: News Agencies, Edited by website team

21-08-2017 | 14:03
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Awamia Declares State of Emergency, But Who Really Cares?

Zeinab Daher

As if is not enough for the people of Awamia to be under continuous heavy bombings, that the Saudi regime started forcing them out of their homes. But what if a person has nowhere to go to?

 

Awamia Declares State of Emergency, But Who Really Cares?


Some three months earlier, the restive town enjoyed a peaceful atmosphere. However, once upon a thought, the Saudi regime decided to raze the historical neighborhood of Awamia, in the Qatif eastern province. Under the alleged pretext of ‘developing’ the area, which is indeed to chase wanted activists, the regime is starving the Shia population there, blocking their access to phone and electricity services, and lately displacing them to nowhere.

It was before three months that the government summoned the neighborhood’s residents to pay them undue compensations so they would leave their houses. The majority of people neither accepted the measure, nor did they go to take their money. Their rejection was because the government warned them that in case anybody was killed in the area, the regime won’t be responsible!

 

Awamia Declares State of Emergency, But Who Really Cares?


Facing a popular resistance to give up on residential areas, the Saudi government started tightening its grip on Awami people. Its escalatory measures ranged between blocking electricity service, phone and internet services, besieging the town and blocking entrances and exits with cement blocks, and most lately bombing houses over their residents.

As part of the worst tragedies in modern history, the Saudi regime troops forced locals to leave Awamia and raise white flags on their way out, then proceed to harass them and loot their homes.

 

Awamia Declares State of Emergency, But Who Really Cares?


However, those same people are not only being attacked by their own government, but by their nationals as well. Many of property owners are trying to abuse the situation and are refusing to offer them a paid shelter unless they pay for three months in advance.

Although many others are offering them houses for free, the previous behavior makes any person feel as if he/she is a stranger in their homeland. Until Friday, Awamia citizens were calling for necessary aid such as bread, milk and diapers for their babies.

 

Awamia Declares State of Emergency, But Who Really Cares?


By sacrificing several lives of its youth, Awamia has become one of the most heartbreaking scenes in the oil-rich dictatorship. Awamia however is never seen, never heard and never felt by the entire world! We still haven’t heard the voices of those kindhearted ‘people of good will’ who always express their concerns and solidarity with the smallest of human rights violations all over the globe.

As if Awamia, and the entire eastern province are not part of this planet to grab the attention of the free people to stand up for its support…

Al-Ahed

29-07-2017 | 13:49

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RT Editor, in Speech Before Leaders, Discusses Role Played By ‘Powerful Press Artillery’ in West’s Wars

[ Ed. note – During Chinese President Xi Jinping’s recent visit to Moscow, RT Editor-in-Chief Margarita Simonyan delivered a speech in which she discussed the role of the Western media in fomenting wars. Specifically, the media serve as a “press artillery,” effectively engaging in “precision bombing,” she said, remarking also that “not a single war in recent years started” without propagandistic barrages of this sort.

The media not only can change people’s attitudes toward a leader or a country, but they can even alter “the values of entire societies.” My own comment here is that this has certainly been the case in the United States–a country which has seen a dramatic evolution of its values over the past three, four, and five decades.

Simonyan’s speech is good as far as it goes, although sadly she makes no mention of the fact that media owners in the west are predominantly Jewish, nor either does she allow for the possibility that a Jewish tribal agenda may be (and most likely is) a driving factor behind the deceitful reporting. Both Presidents Putin and Jinping were present during her speech, however, and she invited the Chinese to join Russia in its efforts to “fight information terrorism.”  ]

***

RT

There has not been a war in recent times that began without “a powerful press artillery” and “precision bombing” by media, RT Editor-in-Chief Margarita Simonyan said, speaking in front of President Putin and Chinese leader Xi Jinping.

Simonyan expressed her concern over the media’s growing, and often boundless, influence and the way it changes the world around us, during Chinese President Xi Jinping’s state visit to Moscow.

“We live in unique times, when media – the so-called fourth estate – in many countries is trying to become, and sometimes becomes, the first: sets the rules of the game, controls public opinion, doesn’t just change people’s attitude towards a leader or a state, but alters the values of entire societies,” RT’s editor-in-chief said.

The media has become a weapon and a life-changing tool at the same time, Simonyan said.

“Not a single war in recent years started without a powerful world press ‘artillery,’ not a single battle happened without previous precision bombing by TV, radio, newspapers, and online resources,” she said.

 photo medialies_zpsefpioihs.gif

The media can also change people’s perceptions of public figures, like “making an unheard-of, ordinary person, like, for instance, Barack Obama, the hero of a generation overnight; or vice versa, making a generation’s hero, like Julian Assange, into an outcast and a misfit.”

Even more than that, “the media can change the fates of entire nations, their leaders, and sometimes even shift the borders: for instance, Kosovo wouldn’t ever have been possible without one-sided and biased coverage by all the world media, by the so-called mainstream, with no exception,” Simonyan added.

The media’s impact can be, and often is, purposefully damaging and detrimental, she said.

“This power of the press, sometimes boundless, can be used for the good – when we save the innocent, fight injustice, tyranny, corruption – or to do damage, when the media provides for the aggressive foreign policy of a country, illustrating it with convenient pictures.”

Simonyan also provided a striking example of media adjusting the narrative to fit in with their agenda.

“Everyone remembers the boy Omran, who became a symbol of Assad’s so-called ‘atrocities.’ This photo was on the front covers of all world media, spread by all of the mainstream. Of course, who wouldn’t feel sorry for a boy dug up from under the rubble, covered in blood and soot? We found the boy’s family a month ago. His father supports Assad, and he told us this really scary story about how an infamous humanitarian organization basically snatched the boy out of his father’s hands, not letting him perform first aid, to take the photos and give them to the journalists. And he is not being heard.”

Sometimes it seems that some media may resort to any means to ensure their agenda stays in place, and here’s where fake news comes in handy, Simonyan said. When it comes to that, few countries are under attack as often and as consistently as China and Russia, she added.

“Fake news has become a trap, snaring millions of people used to trusting major media names, who shouldn’t be trusted for a long time now. Blatant lies that used to be reserved for tabloids are now doing the rounds in the world media, and from their pages, those lies are put into the mouths of the newly-minted leaders.”

Continued here

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