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US and UK Launch Airstrikes on Yemen’s Huthi Rebels Over Red Sea Attacks

In response to the Iran-backed Huthi rebels’ escalating assaults on shipping in the Red Sea, the United States and Britain carried out airstrikes using fighter jets and Tomahawk missiles. The Huthis, controlling a significant part of Yemen since 2014, had intensified attacks on the crucial international sea route, triggering global concerns. The Western strikes risk exacerbating tensions in the Middle East, potentially widening the conflict between the US, Israel, and Iran along with its proxies.

Background: Huthi Actions and Western Warnings

The Huthis, attributing their actions to Israel’s Gaza Strip bombardment, launched drones and missiles towards Israel. Western nations, part of Operation Prosperity Guardian, had issued stern warnings to cease shipping attacks. Despite these warnings, the Huthis persisted, prompting British Defense Secretary Grant Shapps to declare “enough is enough.” The UN Security Council also urged an immediate halt to the attacks, highlighting the threat to regional peace.

Escalation Trigger: Anti-Ship Ballistic Missile Attack

The tipping point for the US and UK came when the Huthis fired an anti-ship ballistic missile into the Gulf of Aden, marking the 27th attack since November 19. Fears of a global economic shock arose as shipping companies bypassed the Red Sea route. The Huthis claimed to target vessels linked to Israel or its allies, while the US strengthened its military presence in the region after the October 7 attacks on Israel.

Global Economic Concerns and Emergency Meetings

Shipping companies diverting around South Africa’s Cape of Good Hope raised alarms about potential economic repercussions. British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak convened an emergency cabinet meeting, reflecting the gravity of the situation. The international community faces the challenge of managing a complex geopolitical scenario in the region.

Important Questions Related to Exams

  1. What prompted the US and UK airstrikes in Yemen?

  2. How did the Huthi rebels justify their actions, and what role did the Gaza Strip conflict play in their actions?
  3. Discuss the significance of Operation Prosperity Guardian and the warnings issued by the international community to the Huthi rebels.
  4. What events led to the escalation of tensions, and why did the US and UK decide to take military action against the Huthis?

Please provide your answers in the comment section!!

 

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