As readers surely know, the Saudis have begun an aerial bombing campaign against the Iranian-backed Houthi Shiites who were in the process of taking over the nation of Yemen (first link). The Saudis are backed by a coalition of the Sunni Muslim nations, but many of these nations are likely giving just moral or nominal support. There is no question that the Saudis and their Sunni allies have said, “enough is enough” re: Iranian efforts to dominate the entire Mideast. The Iranian-backed Shiites had already run the Americans out of Yemen so they had taken on an aura of invincibility that was sapping the morale of the Sunnis in Yemen. Also, Iran could control the approaches and exits via the Suez Canal by having their missiles threaten all maritime traffic in the southern Red Sea, so this Houthi move was vital to Iran’s regional advance. Having driven the USA out of Yemen, I think the Iranians and Houthis got carried away with hubris and didn’t anticipate the Saudi military action.
The first link points out that Egypt is also “prepared to launch a ground offensive in the region.” How would this most likely occur? The nation of Sudan is part of the coalition backing the Saudi military action, and the Sudan is just south of Egypt. Egyptian army units can drive down the western side of the Red Sea via Sudanese territory and then cross over the Red Sea into Yemen, supported by Arab Sunni air forces and naval units. The Saudi air campaign may be “softening up” the Yemen region before such an invasion.
The second link reports that the Shiite Houthis may have as many as 300 Scud-type missiles under their control, and these missiles can be fired 250-600 KM depending on their type. These missiles are being targeted by Saudi air strikes, and, most ominously, the link reports many of them are aimed at Saudi Arabia. There can be no doubt that Iran and Saudi Arabia are engaged in a surrogate war within Yemen. This is a battle for the control of the Mideast and key choke points in the region. As some cable-TV commentators have noted, Iran’s Shiite bloc has effectively gained control of five Mideast capital cities (Tehran, Damascus, Beirut, Baghdad and Sanaa (in Yemen)). The Sunni bloc, led by Saudi Arabia and Egypt, has decided to fight back. Saudi Arabia’s strategic reserve force is the Egyptian military. Iran knew this and tried to destabilize Egypt via a take-over by the extremist Muslim Brotherhood. Thankfully, the Egyptian military could see what was happening and they intervened to thwart Iran’s plans. Egypt is already fighting Islamic extremists in the Sinai Peninsula, so it is ready to expand its fight by intervening alongside the Saudis in Yemen if necessary. Egypt has a huge vital interest in making sure Iranian-backed Shiites cannot control the southern approaches to the Red Sea and the Suez Canal.
The broader Arab League is meeting in Egypt now (third link), and one of their central concerns is, obviously, the war in Yemen and what each Sunni nation can do to help stop the Iranian advance in the region. In a bizarre twist, the USA is helping the Sunni Saudis in Yemen by rescuing its downed pilots (last link), but the USA is assisting the Shiite Islamic forces inside Iraq by bombing the Sunni radicals of ISIS. It appears that Iraq is so broken as a nation that that there are no more “good guys” inside Iraq other than the Kurds. It’s pathetic that the US military defeated Saddam Hussein’s army and took control of all of Iraq in a swift and decisive military victory. However, by doing a swift withdrawal from Iraq, Obama created a void into which ISIS and the Iranians have moved. The US military won Iraq, but the Obama administration and the US State department diplomats lost Iraq. Now we are reaping in Iraq the whirlwind of bad decisions. The terrible policy mistakes of the Obama administration have apparently resulted in a situation where all the members of the US military who gave their lives or were injured in the Iraqi War made their sacrifices in vain. This is beyond sad.
According to Saudi news conferences, Saudi spokesmen are stating that a ground campaign in Yemen is all but inevitable. An air campaign will not be enough to drive the Houthi Shiites back to their northern redoubts. My cable-TV system offers Al Jazeera America, which I have found to be an excellent source of information. They have huge resources in the Mideast and easily offer the most complete coverage of the Yemenite war. If you can watch it on your cable-TV or satellite-TV system, I urge you to do so. It is on Al Jazeera America that I watch the Saudi news conferences on the progress of the Yemenite War. Personally, I think the owners of that news network should have called it International Network News (or INN for short).
Biblically, we are seeing more end-game maneuvering in global geopolitics, the outcome of which will determine the final alignments of nations in the prophesied rival alliances revealed in Ezekiel 38-39. We know Iran (“Persia”) will be in the Russian- and Chinese-led Gog Magog alliance (Ezekiel 38:5), but none of the Sunni Arab, none of the nations descended from Abraham, or Egypt are mentioned as being in the final Gog-Magog alliance. This argues that the Saudi-led and Egyptian-led Sunni bloc will not be part of the ultimate Gog-Magog alliance. As the rivalry between Iran and Saudi Arabia/Egypt grows more intense, this outcome is very logical given modern events.