Pentagon Alarmed Over Huge Price Tag Of Countering Cheap Yemeni Drones

Tyler Durden's Photo
by Tyler Durden
Friday, Dec 22, 2023 - 10:50 PM

Via The Cradle,

Concerns about the high cost of countering the threat posed by the Yemeni armed forces in the Red Sea are growing in the Pentagon, according to US defense officials who spoke with Politico.

Sanaa has reportedly fired at least 100 drones toward Israeli-linked commercial vessels for the past month in support of the Palestinian people. US estimates place the cost of the domestic-made drones at $2,000 each.

Houthi drone, via AP

In comparison, each munition used by US warships in the Red Sea cost between $1 million and $4.3 million. The US navy has reportedly shot down at least 38 of the drones fired by Yemen.

"[The high cost] quickly becomes a problem because the most benefit, even if we do shoot down their incoming missiles and drones, is in their favor,” Mick Mulroy, a former US defense official and CIA officer, told POLITICO. “We, the US, need to start looking at systems that can defeat these that are more in line with the costs they are expending to attack us.”

Complicating matters further for Washington, their warships cannot reload their munitions at sea.

On Monday, US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin announced the formation of an international maritime task force to counter Yemeni attacks in the Red Sea.

Western media reports say that 19 nations have signed up to the task force, which is called Operation Prosperity Guardian. However, only the UK, Bahrain, Canada, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Seychelles, and Spain have been publicly announced as part of the US-led coalition.

"I advise all those countries that the US is trying to get involved for Israel not to take part in their military coalition, not to jeopardize the safety of their navigation lanes in favor of Israel and the US.  Why do you have to do that?" the leader of Yemen's Ansarallah resistance movement, Abdul-Malik al-Houthi, said during a televised speech on 20 December.

He also confirmed that Washington "must know they are at war with the whole Yemeni nation,” stressing that such a battle "will be much harder than what they faced in Afghanistan and what they suffered in Vietnam."

The Ansarallah leader further highlighted that only Israeli-linked ships face any danger in the Red Sea. “The exclusive entity targeted by Yemen is Israel […] Maritime navigation is all safe except for the Israeli ships. Our attitude is loud and clear. The misery in Gaza cannot be ignored.”

Yemen's commitment to oppose Israel’s ethnic cleansing campaign in Gaza has led the group to seize an Israeli-linked ship and launch attacks on over a dozen others. The resistance group has also launched missiles at the Israeli port city of Eilat.

Their actions have forced at least six of the world's largest shipping firms to stop operating in the Red