US Envoy Suggests Diplomacy With the Houthis as Bombing Campaign Has Failed

The Houthis condition has always been they will stop attacking Israel-linked shipping if the onslaught in Gaza comes to an end

Tim Lenderking, President Biden’s envoy for Yemen, said the US wants a “diplomatic solution” with the Houthis as its bombing campaign has failed to deter the Yemeni group and has only escalated the situation in the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden.

“My hope is that we can find diplomatic off-ramps,” Lenderking said on Wednesday. He suggested the US could reverse its recent decision to re-designate the Houthis as “Specially Designated Global Terrorists,” which imposed new sanctions that are blocking a peace deal between the Houthis and Saudi Arabia.

Lenderking said the US is looking to “find ways to de-escalate and allow us to pull back, eventually, the designation and, of course, to end the military strikes on Houthis’ military capability.”

The Houthis have been clear that they would only stop their attacks on Israel-linked shipping if Israel ends its genocidal campaign in Gaza. Lenderking has previously acknowledged that he believes the Houthis would be true to their word and would stop the Red Sea attacks if there was a ceasefire in Gaza.

Since President Biden launched his new unauthorized war against the Houthis on January 12, the US and the UK have bombed Yemen at least 148 times, according to the Yemen Data Project. Despite the failure of the campaign, the US continues to launch missile strikes on Houthi-controlled Yemen.

US Central Command said on Wednesday that US forces in the Red Sea intercepted a Houthi missile and two drones. It also claimed that CENTCOM forces “destroyed a mobile surface-to-air missile system in Houthi-controlled territory.”

The Houthis, officially known as Ansar Allah, have controlled Yemen’s capital, Sanaa, since 2014 and govern an area of Yemen where 70-80% of Yemenis live. The US backed a brutal Saudi/UAE war that failed to oust them, which killed at least 377,000 people.

Author: Dave DeCamp

Dave DeCamp is the news editor of, follow him on Twitter @decampdave.