Who are the Houthis, the rebel group shaking Yemen

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By John

The United States has launched new attacks against Houthi targets in Yemen. CNN reports it. The target of the new operation, according to what the New York Times writes, would have been a radar plant in Yemen. A Pentagon source explained that the new attack aims to complete the damage to the Houthis’ ability to target ships transiting the Red Sea caused by Friday’s bombing.

«This attack was conducted by USS Carney (DDG 64) with Tomahawk land-attack missiles and was a follow-up action on a specific military target associated with attacks carried out on January 12 to reduce the Houthis’ ability to attack shipping, including commercial ones,” the US Central Command said in a statement published on

Who are the Houthis

The Houthis, also known as Ansar Allah, are a Yemeni rebel group that has gained international notoriety in recent years due to their involvement in Yemen’s ongoing complex civil war.

Origins and ideologies

The Houthis take their name from Hussein Badreddin al-Houthi, a Yemeni religious leader who founded the movement in 2004. The group is known for its roots in the Zaydi branch of Shia Islam, a religious minority in Yemen. But it is important to underline that the Houthis do not represent the entire Zaydi community, but rather a radicalized faction.

Their ideology is based on a combination of religious, political and social elements. The Houthis support resistance against foreign influence, particularly that of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, which support the internationally recognized Yemeni government. They also claim the fight against corruption and social injustice within Yemen.

Rise to power

The Houthis have gained ground over the years through a series of armed conflicts and political alliances. In 2014, they captured the Yemeni capital, Sana’a, pushing Yemen’s internationally recognized president, Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi, into exile. This triggered a series of events that led to the ongoing civil war in Yemen.

Their rise to power created a complicated conflict and led to military intervention by a coalition led by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, aiming to restore Hadi’s government. The war has had a devastating impact on the Yemeni population, causing a serious humanitarian crisis with thousands of deaths, millions of displaced people and the spread of hunger and disease.

Regional geopolitics

The Houthis were accused of receiving support from Iran, which allegedly provided them with weapons and financial support. This has triggered regional concerns and led to a growing rivalry between Saudi Arabia, a supporter of the recognized Yemeni government, and Iran, accused of seeking to extend its influence in the region.

The war in Yemen has become something of a battleground for a number of regional and international actors, including the United States, which has supported the Saudi coalition with arms sales and logistical support. The conflict has therefore contributed to growing instability in the Persian Gulf region.