One week into the Saudi War in Yemen, the conflict is already looking much more difficult than officials had initially portrayed it, with heavy airstrikes nationwide doing little to prevent the Shi’ite Houthis, their primary targets, form gaining territory, including the key southern port of Aden.
That’s only one aspect of the setbacks the war is facing, with al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), seemingly forgotten in the precipitous rush to intervention, suddenly taking a major city for itself, and freeing hundreds of prisoners.
So far, the airstrikes have only managed to kill large numbers of people, including hundreds of civilian bystanders, and are fueling a major backlash among the Yemeni public against the war, including among officials who’d initially endorsed it.
A war initially presented as a cakewalk which would be resolved in a matter of weeks has already been openly extended to several months, and the reality of the situation is that even with a planned ground invasion, there is little reason to believe the Saudis have a concrete exit strategy.
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