11 days into the Saudi war on Yemen, hundreds of Yemeni civilians have been killed, seemingly a solid majority of the casualties in the ongoing air war, and life is becoming difficult both for the internally displaced and for those who stayed put.
Locals in major cities are warning of growing shortages, with food becoming scarcer, and most basic services halted. Gas stations are all running on empty, and what shops remain are facing looting from a panicked populace.
Saudi officials are trying to blame the situation on the “power vacuum” in Yemen since the resignation of President Hadi, who they intend to reinstall militarily.
Yet Hadi resigned in January, and other than an abortive unresignation and attempt to claim the city of Aden, he hasn’t had anything to do with day-to-day operations for months, even before his resignation.
Yemen is the poorest country in the Middle East, so things were never running spectacularly, but the sudden shortages and lack of basic services cropped up almost immediately after the Saudis began attacking, and it is no coincidence that the Saudis have blocked the Red Cross from delivering humanitarian aid to the country during what is becoming one of their worst crises in recent memory.