President Joe Biden announced last Thursday the United States is ending support for the
Saudi-led side in a five-year civil war in Yemen. The civil war has pitted a Saudi-led group against the Iranian-led and supplied Houthi movement – a Sharia supremacist militia responsible for countless killings in the Arabian Peninsula region’s poorest country.
The Houthi slogan is "Allah is Greater, Death to America, Death to Israel, Curse the Jews, Victory to Islam” and they have set about implementing that slogan with a ferocity that has seldom been matched, save for in the ISIS Caliphate at its bloody zenith.
Reports by the Associated Press remind us that the Obama-Biden administration in 2015 gave its approval to Saudi Arabia leading a cross-border air campaign targeting Yemen’s Houthi rebels, who were seizing ever more territory, including Sanaa, the Yemeni capital. The Houthis under the tutelage of Iran have launched multiple drone and missile strikes deep into Saudi Arabia.
But empowering an Iranian-backed militia is not really bad, according to the Biden State Department, unless it is on the other end of the Arabian Peninsula.
Regular readers of CHQ will recall that we reported the day Joe Biden was inaugurated he sent a convoy of U.S. trucks and armored vehicles back into Syria – their mission was never spelled out by the new Biden administration, but previous U.S. units have been tasked with preventing the overland link-up between Iran and their proxy the Hezbollah militia in Syria and Lebanon.
As the Countering Terrorism Center at West Point noted in Iran’s Unwavering Support to Assad’s Syria:
Iran initially supported the popular uprisings in the Middle East—calling them “Islamic awakenings”—when it appeared that only Western-allied Arab autocracies in Tunisia, Egypt, and Yemen were vulnerable to collapse. In Syria, however, Tehran has offered unwavering support to the embattled al-Assad regime and denounced the Syrian opposition as “terrorists” supported by a motley alliance of Gulf Arab states, Israel, and the United States. Senior Iranian figures, such as former Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Velayati, have referred to Syria as “a golden ring of resistance against Israel,” and Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei-confidante Mehdi Taeb said that Syria is Iran’s “35th province…if we lose Syria we won’t be able to hold Tehran.” Without Iranian military aide and financial largesse, al-Assad’s regime may have fallen long ago.
So, just to be absolutely clear about what is going on, the Biden administration appears to be blocking Iran in the north of the Arabian Peninsula (Syria and Lebanon) while at the same time empowering Iran in the south of the Arabian Peninsula (Yemen).
The problem is, the two zones of engagement have a very clear nexus – Iran – and Iran has equally clear goals, as the Houthis put it, "Allah is Greater, Death to America, Death to Israel, Curse the Jews, Victory to Islam.”
Back in August of 2018, the Trump administration’s U.S. Mission to the United Nations tweeted a photo that had circulated in the Arab press of a meeting in Beirut between the Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah and Houthi officials. As U.S. officials pointed out at the time, it showed “the nature of the regional terrorist threat,” and added: “Iranian proxies in Lebanon & Yemen pose major dangers to peace & stability in the entire Middle East.”
The Iranian goal in Syria and in Yemen is the same – create a safe zone for the expansion of Iranian religious and military influence against the United States, Israel, and Saudi Arabia. It makes no sense to put American troops in harm’s way in Syria while withdrawing support for Arab forces that are actually fighting Iran and its allies in Yemen.
If limiting the projection of Iranian military force and influence remains an American strategic goal, the Biden administration appears to be working against itself by letting Iran have its way in Yemen while blocking its aspirations in Syria. The toll-free Capitol Switchboard (1-866-220-0044) call your Representative and Senators today and tell them there should be no American troops in harms way in the Middle East unless the Biden administration can define a clear American national interest for them to defend.
George Rasley is editor of Richard Viguerie's ConservativeHQ.com and is a veteran of over 300 political campaigns. A member of American MENSA, he served on the staff of Vice President Dan Quayle, as Director of Policy and Communication for then-Congressman Adam Putnam (FL-12) then Vice Chairman of the Oversight and Government Reform Committee's Subcommittee on National Security and Foreign Affairs, and as spokesman for retired Rep. Mac Thornberry formerly Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee.
Joe Biden foreign policy
Obama Iran Deal
Yemen Civil War