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Pentagon Suggests Houthis Facing Challenges in the Red Sea, Overreaching Beyond Their Capacity

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According to the Pentagon, the Houthi rebels may have overstepped in their Red Sea strikes on international vessels.

Photo from Google

Operation Prosperity Guardian: Coalition Forms in Response to Houthi Threats Against US Vessels

A day before, Yemen’s Houthi leader, Abdelmalek Al Houthi, threatened to attack US vessels. In response, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin formed Operation Prosperity Guardian, a coalition of over a dozen countries, to defend commercial vessels in the Red Sea.

On Wednesday, Houthi commander Abdelmalek Al Houthi threatened to attack US vessels if Washington attacked. Pentagon Press Secretary Maj Gen Pat Ryder stressed the coalition’s defensive approach to maritime safety. He advised the Houthis to stop their attacks, questioning whether they had overestimated the consequences of threatening the international community and world trade.

Houthi attacks have stopped since the task force was created. Maj Gen Ryder hoped the coalition was deterring. Since last month, Houthi drones and missiles have targeted international vessels in reaction to Israel’s Gaza Strip hostilities.

READ ALSO: Who are Yemen’s Houthis and what is behind their attacks in the Red Sea?

Houthi Threats to Shipping Routes Raise Concerns of Escalation and Global Impact

Hans Jacob-Schindler, director of the Counter Extremism Project, said the Houthis may keep attacking Israel’s transport routes. He predicted escalation and US airstrikes and that the task force may target Houthi weapons stores in Yemen. Houthi strikes on the Suez Canal have disrupted a vital commercial route between Europe, North America, and Asia, raising container shipping rates.

Hapag Lloyd, a German container shipping company, has redirected vessels around Africa instead of the Red Sea, adding days to voyage durations and increasing fears about delays and price spikes that could cause worldwide inflation. Shippers will reevaluate the situation by December 31 before choosing new routes.

The Pentagon’s concerns regarding the Houthi attacks, Operation Prosperity Guardian, and global trade highlight the Red Sea’s complexity and importance.

READ ALSO: Houthis may have ‘bitten off more than they can chew’ in Red Sea, Pentagon says

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