Pentagon Blames 'Intel Gap' For Failure To Stop Yemen's Red Sea Ops

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by Tyler Durden
Wednesday, Mar 06, 2024 - 08:30 PM

Via The Cradle

US defense officials have blamed "insufficient intelligence" for Washington's abortive airstrike campaign against Yemen, which started in mid-January and has so far failed to deter Yemen's Houthi armed forces from attacking US, UK, and Israeli-linked vessels in the Red Sea in support of Palestine.

During a congressional hearing on US operations in the Red Sea last week, US Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for West Asia, Daniel B. Shapiro, revealed Washington "did not know" the full capacity of the Yemeni arsenal used for its operations in the Red Sea, adding that the White House was "working to gather that intelligence."

Saba News Agency

He added that, while the Pentagon had “a good sense” of what US-led attacks have allegedly destroyed, officials did not “fully know the denominator” – meaning the reality of Yemen's military capabilities.

According to current and former US officials who spoke with the Financial Times (FT), US intelligence agencies saw a "drop-off" in Yemen operations during the governments of former presidents  Barack Obama and Donald Trump.
"Because Yemen went down as a priority, so did our intelligence focus there," Mick Mulroy, a former senior Pentagon official and CIA officer, told the British news outlet.

CIA operations in Yemen were also affected after the Ansarallah-led government shut down the US embassy in Sanaa.

"Reporting on a country from afar or offshore is inherently challenging, and doubly so for a country that has seen so much churn over the past 10 years," Ted Singer, a recently retired senior CIA official, said.

Although hundreds of US-led airstrikes have hit the Arab world's poorest country since January, Yemeni leaders maintain that no amount of hostilities will deter them from continuing their Red Sea operations until Israel puts an end to the genocide of Palestinians in Gaza.

"The US, Britain, and Israel must realize that the policies of demarcation and assertion of hegemonic influence on international waters are obsolete and no more favorable … As long as the Zionists’ atrocities continue in Gaza, we will continue our operations against the usurping entity," Defense Minister Major General Mohammed al-Atifi said on February 26.

Yesterday saw more attempted direct attacks on US warships...

As US intelligence agencies scramble to discover the reality of Yemen's military arsenal, White House lawyers are in a rush to find legal loopholes to justify a new war in West Asia.