U.A.E. Denies Yemen Rebels Fired Missile at Abu Dhabi Nuclear Plant
Editor’s note: Saudi Arabia's invasion of Yemen has been brutal. The war began at the behest of Saudi Arabia’s new crown prince, Mohammad Bin Salman, who is working with Jared Kushner, in a near clandestine manner, without much input from the US State Department. Kushner, an avowed Zionist, leads a coalition consisting of Saudi Arabia, Israel, and the United States, which purports to be setting out Palestine’s future, but seems to be concerned with reshaping the Middle East.
The fighting in Yemen has resulted in a humanitarian crisis. Shipments of medical and other supplies have been disrupted across the country; and many water treatment facilities have been destroyed, which has caused one of the greatest cholera outbreaks in recent history. The mainstream media, with a few exceptions, has refused to report on this story, and when they do, Saudi Arabia seems to receive a free pass. The coalition sees the Houthis in Yemen as a problem; and seeks to impose Sunni/Wahhabist rule.
The fighting in Yemen, however, is just a proxy war. The larger problem in the region, according to the coalition, is Iran. They see Tehran as standing in the way of the Saudis dominating the Middle East. Yemen has become a punching bag; and the Saudis blame Iran for supplying the Houthis with weapons and resources. The last time a missile was fired at the United Arab Emirates, the Western mainstream media parroted the rumours that Iran was responsible because they allegedly supplied the Houthis with these weapons. Naturally, no proof of this claim was ever offered, and as we learned from post 9/11 propaganda, the blame game can have disastrous consequences, especially for vulnerable countries like Yemen.
Saudi Arabia wants the Houthis eliminated, and they have the blessings of Israel and the United States to remove them. We have no idea why Yemen would lie about sending a missile to hit a nuclear power plant in the United Arab Emirates. It makes no sense. All we know is that we cannot trust reports from the mainstream fake news media.
Yemen’s Houthi rebels said on Sunday that they had fired a cruise missile at a $20 billion nuclear power plant under construction in Abu Dhabi, but the United Arab Emirates’ state-run news agency immediately denied the claim.
A statement on the Houthi website said the missile took aim at the “strategic” Barakah nuclear reactor on Saturday, “successfully hitting its target.” The launch was in retaliation for the closing of sea and airports, it said, without offering evidence or providing further details.
The statement quoted a Houthi leader who warned against continuing the blockade, “affirming Yemenis’ right to take sensitive steps.”
On Twitter, the state agency WAM denied the Houthi rebels had launched a missile toward the United Arab Emirates. In another post on Twitter, WAM said, “U.A.E. possesses an air defense system capable of dealing with any threat of any kind and the project of Barakah reactor is immune.”
It is the second time this year that the Iran-aligned Houthis have said they fired a missile toward the United Arab Emirates since the Gulf States, led by Saudi Arabia, began an air campaign against the rebels who had toppled the Gulf-allied president of Yemen, Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, in 2015.
A few months ago, the Houthis said they had “successfully” test-fired a missile toward Abu Dhabi.
The Saudi coalition, which includes the United Arab Emirates, accuses Iran of trying to expand its influence into Arab countries, including Yemen, which shares a long border with Saudi Arabia, by aligning with the Houthis.
The coalition has targeted the Houthi rebels with deadly airstrikes. The Houthis, in turn, have launched dozens of ballistic missiles toward Saudi territories, inflicting little damage but causing anxiety among Gulf monarchs, who have suspected cooperation between the rebels and Iran and Hezbollah.
The rebels’ claim of an attack on a nuclear power plant also comes days after Israel said it had destroyed an Iranian base near the Syrian city of al-Qiswa, southwest of Damascus, on Friday.
It is unclear if there were any casualties, since the base had not been completed. There has been no official Iranian reaction. Israel also has not commented on the reports. But it previously acknowledged carrying out repeated air and missile strikes in Syria since the beginning of the war six years ago, to stop arms deliveries to Hezbollah.
On Sunday, an Iranian analyst, Hamidreza Taraghi, who has close ties to Iran’s leaders, denied the country had links to the missile attack claimed by the Yemen rebels.
“We have nothing to do with this,” Mr. Taraghi said. “The Houthis are very capable of hitting targets without our assistance.”
But Iran’s regional rival, Saudi Arabia, and its allies insist that Iran has provided the Houthis with such weaponry and say that the rebels are taking commands from Tehran.
The Yemen rebels’ claim about striking a target in Abu Dhabi comes amid heavy fighting in Yemen’s capital, Sana, between the Shiite Houthi rebels and some of their former allies, who are led by former President Ali Abdullah Saleh.
Mr. Saleh, who stepped down in 2011 after a mass uprising against his 33 years in office, has formed an alliance with the Houthis. Since then, fractures have emerged between the former leader and the rebels, exacerbating the crisis.
In a televised speech on Saturday, Mr. Saleh blamed the Houthis’ “idiocy” for the war in Yemen and declared that he was ready to turn a “new page” in ties with the coalition if it stopped the attacks on his country.
“I call upon the brothers in neighboring states and the alliance to stop their aggression, lift the siege, open the airports and allow food aid and the saving of the wounded, and we will turn a new page by virtue of our neighborliness,” Mr. Saleh said.
In a statement carried by the Saudi-owned news outlet Al-Hadath, the coalition appeared to welcome Mr. Saleh’s remarks, saying it was “confident of the will of the leaders and sons” of Mr. Saleh’s political party to return to the fold.
Such a move by Mr. Saleh could pave the way to end the war, which has created one of the world’s largest humanitarian catastrophes, unleashing signs of famine and outbreaks of cholera.
The apparent shift came as Mr. Saleh’s supporters battled Houthi fighters for a fourth day in the capital. A senior security officer at the Ministry of Interior in Sana said that about 80 people have died and at least 140 more have been injured since fighting broke out.
The nuclear power plant, in Abu Dhabi’s far western desert, is being built by the Korea Electric Power Corporation near the border with Saudi Arabia and is scheduled to begin operating next year, the United Arab Emirates energy minister has said, according to The Associated Press.