There are indications that Egypt is close to intervening militarily in Yemen as an ally of the Saudis against the Iranian-backed Houthis. In recent posts, I’ve warned that Egypt has a vital national security interest in not allowing any Shiite power to endanger the shipping to and from the Suez Canal via the Red Sea. All southern approaches to the Suez Canal are via the Red Sea which has a very narrow entrance at its southern tip along the Yemenite coast. This choke point is called the Bab al-Mandeb waterway.
Egypt has warned that if the Bab al-Mandeb choke point is threatened, it will intervene in the Yemenite war (first link). Egypt already has warships patrolling the Yemenite coastal region, and the Egyptian navy has already shelled the Houthi Shiites in the region of the southern port city of Aden (second link).
The final link reports that the Houthi Shiites have now seized control of the Yemenite coast at Bab al-Mandeb choke point. This act will trigger Egyptian military intervention in Yemen’s civil war if Egypt acts according to its earlier threat. The first link also reported that both Saudi and Egyptian warships are positioned to take a more active role in the war against the Houthis–Iran’s Shiite surrogates in the Yemenite war.
Reports I’m seeing on cable TV indicate that while the Saudi air war against the Houthis is inflicting damage, it is not slowing the advance of the Houthis in taking over Yemen. It is a repeat of what has been happening in Iraq and Syria. Just as air strikes have hurt and slowed ISIL in Syria and Iraq, events have shown that it takes “boots on the ground” to stop hostile “boots on the ground.” The same reality is unfolding in Yemen.
The facts on the ground are indicating that if Saudi Arabia is serious about stopping Iran from having a Shiite client state in Yemen and if Egypt is serious about not letting Iran’s surrogates control the strategic waterway at the Bab al-Mandeb, both nations will have to have their navies take a more active role in shelling the Houthis from the sea and both nations will have no choice but to put their armies on the ground inside Yemen to hurl back the Shiite advance. Given the continuing Shiite/Houthi advance inside Yemen, Iran will soon have a client state controlling Yemen and the approaches to the Suez Canal unless Egypt and Saudi Arabia take more aggressive action.
Biblically, we are continuing to witness the jostling for position that modern nations are taking as the latter day alliances prophesied in Ezekiel 38 take shape. Iran (“Persia”) is a major nation in the Russian- and Chinese-led Gog-Magog alliance (Ezekiel 38:5), and it is advancing all over the Mideast via its surrogates, and it is going to succeed in Yemen as well unless Saudi Arabia and Egypt are serious about intervening forcefully enough to stop Iran’s plans for domination of Yemen. Its seems evident that Saudi air strikes are ineffective in turning the tide. If Egypt and Saudi Arabia don’t intervene inside Yemen with their armies soon, Iran is headed for a major victory in Yemen. I don’t think Egypt can afford to stay idle while Iran takes control of the approaches to Egypt’s Suez Canal.