The Houthi insurgency in Yemen is a military rebellion pitting Zaidi Shia Houthis (though the movement also includes Sunni Muslims against the Yemeni military that began in Northern Yemen and has since escalated into a full-scale civil war. Since 2014 the nature of the insurgency has changed with the Houthi takeover in Yemen and then into the ongoing Yemeni civil war (2015–present) with a major Saudi-led intervention in Yemen beginning in 2015. Illegal smuggling of arms to Houthi rebels in Yemen has been going on for years and multiple evidence was discovered, baring the hallmarks of Iranian manufacturing.
Just this week, the U.S. Navy has seized a shipment of Iranian weapons off the coast of Yemen. The recent attempted transfer included sophisticated components, such as guided missiles parts.
Tal Heinrich focuses through this episode of TIJ Talks on the Houthi armed movement.
Fatima Al-Asrar from the Middle East Institute and Jim Hanson, president of the Security Studies Group, discuss the Houthis’ identity, their reasons for fighting the civil war, the Iranian support behind their actions and why there is no end in sight for the conflict.