While the crisis in Yemen still receives significantly less coverage than other conflicts plaguing the contemporary Middle East, international attention has sharply increased after the start of the intervention led by Saudi Arabia in 2015. As a consequence, the media, but also many scholarly contributions, tend to focus on foreign involvement in Yemen, leaving little space to the analysis of local players such as the Houthis.
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È previsto per oggi l’incontro tra il presidente USA Donald Trump e il principe ereditario saudita Mohammad bin Salman (ormai noto come MbS), impegnato in una visita ufficiale negli Usa che lo vedrà fare tappa a Washington, New York e nella Silicon Valley e incontrare oltre al presidente Trump e ad altri leader politici, anche esponenti del mondo del business. Ciò riassume la sostanza dei rapporti Usa-Arabia Saudita da 70 anni a questa parte: un’intesa sulla politica estera basata su una comune visione del mondo e tanti affari.
After Houthi rebels executed a coup against the government in January 2015, and marched towards Aden, absorbing the territory of the internationally-recognized President Abd-Rabbuh Mansour Hadi, the Saudi-led coalition launched a military campaign in Yemen (26 March 2015), under the declared aim of reinstating the legitimate government and protecting its southern borders. From that moment on, the conflict has escalated and fighting fronts extended, resulting in a complex war that has so far defied all efforts at peacemaking.
The rise of the Houthi upended the tribal political alliances that formed the backbone of republican Yemen in the north but without altering the dominance of tribes and tribalism. The Houthi adroitly manipulated local tribal politics in the north during many years of conflict to defeat the Houthi enemies in the tribal leadership that had dominated the north under the Saleh regime. At the same time, the Houthi attacked the political bases of the Islah party and the allied military forces of Ali Mohsin al-Ahmar.
Yemen’s tribal army does not exist anymore, replaced by a plethora of militias, sometimes institutionalised: only a federal-based reform of the security sector could limit the rising territorial power of warlords. A survey conducted by the Yemen Polling Centre in 2017 sheds further light on this point: at the question “Who brings security in this area?”, only 16% of Yemenis all over the country answer “the police/security authorities”.
Isolazionismo. Autarchia. Nativismo (degli americani bianchi). Sembra ormai assodato che gli Stati Uniti si stiano chiudendo nella loro inespugnabile fortezza continentale. Una muraglia d’acqua a Est e a Ovest; muri nel più stretto senso del termine a Nord e Sud, dove non ci sono gli oceani; dazi alle importazioni e alleanze ignorate per dare un senso concreto all’allontanamento dal sistema di valori che l’America stessa aveva creato: globalizzazione, internazionalismo e promozione della democrazia.
Domenica 18 marzo i cittadini russi si recheranno alle urne per le elezioni presidenziali, mentre crescono le tensioni tra Londra e Mosca dopo il caso dell’ex spia del KGB Sergej Skripal avvelenata nel Regno Unito: Theresa May ha espulso 23 diplomatici russi, il numero più alto dal 1971, e il Cremlino ha bollato la misura del governo britannico come “
The United States looks at the upcoming Egyptian presidential elections with mixed – although increasingly critical – feelings. During his recent state visit to the Middle East, at the end of January, Vice President Mike Pence paid traditional lip service to Cairo’s strongman, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, confirming President Trump’s will to re-establish good political relations “after a time when our countries seemed to be drifting apart”.
“That’s what we will be working on, to follow the president’s instructions. We will try to complete all the phases by the end of 2018 or early 2019”, said Petroleum Minister Tarek El Molla with great fanfare. It was on February 1, at the inauguration of the first phase of developing Zohr, the giant offshore gas field near the Egyptian coast. Zohr is estimated to have a reserve of 30 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, the largest in the Mediterranean.
The upcoming Egyptian presidential election, scheduled for March 26-28, should be a foregone conclusion. Without real opponents, the incumbent President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi is waiting for a predictable verdict that will confirm him for a second term. The only question is whether or not this election will be a plebiscite.