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BREAKING: Saudi Arabia Wages War on Yemen

Saudi-led coalition airstrikes on Sanaa. Photograph shared by Yemeni blogger @mareb_elward on Twitter

Saudi-led coalition airstrikes on Sanaa. Photograph shared by Yemeni blogger @mareb_elward on Twitter

Saudi Arabia launched a military campaign against Yemen this morning. Backed by its Gulf Arab allies, Egypt, Jordan, Morocco, Sudan and Saudi Arabia started an airstrike operation, dubbed Decisive Storm, against Houthi fighters who took control of Yemen in January.

The airstrikes started at 2.30 a.m. Yemeni time, and online Yemenis and Arab bloggers are torn between those wanting to see the Houthis rooted out of power and those who don't want to see the country becoming another Iraq, Syria or Libya.

Decisive Storm

UAE commentator Sultan Al Qassemi names the countries taking part in Decisive Storm:

Journalist Henan Moussa adds:

And student Daniel Wickham, from the UK, asks:

Al Qassemi also draws parallels to another storm:

Divided in times of war

Yemeni blogger Atiaf Alwazir appeals to her countrymen and women:

And she adds:

Yemeni Hamza Shargabee explains:

From Sanaa, Jamal Jubran writes on Facebook:

أنت ضد فكرة الحرب. أنت ضد العدوان،أيّ عدوان. تخرج لمظاهرات ضد الحروب. كيف الآن تؤيد الحرب على بلدك. عشر دول بتضرب بلدك في وقت واحد. السعودية بتضرب بلدك. وأنت تؤيدها. اسمح لي أقلك : أنت كائن مسخ ومشوّه.
يلعن أبو شكلك.

You are against war. You are against any aggression. You take part in anti-war demonstrations. How come you now support a war on your country? Ten countries are attacking your country at the same time. Allow me to tell you that you are a disturbed person. May you be damned.

And Hafez Albukari shares photographs of empty streets in the capital Sanaa, as schools have been closed for the day:

What will air strikes achieve?

Many are questioning what airstrikes will achieve.

On The Yemen Peace Project page on Facebook, Will Picard writes:

Saudi Arabia, responding to Abdu Rabu Mansur Hadi's request, has launched air strikes against San'a. As a student of Yemeni affairs and of military tactics, I do not understand what KSA thinks it can achieve with such strikes. People will be killed, without a doubt, and the infrastructure will be damaged, but air strikes will do nothing to degrade the position of Saleh and Ansar Allah.

He adds:

I'm a relatively smart person. I've studied international relations and warfare for a long time. I honestly cannot imagine what positive result Saudi Arabia or its allies think can be achieved through air power right now. Thoughts?

Saudis celebrate

Meanwhile, Saudi blogger Hassan Al Harthy is celebrating the Saudi stance in standing against “injustice and enmity.” He tweets:

Every reign sees a liberation of injustice and enmity
Saudi Arabia is the country of support after Allah

He shares this inforgraphic which champions Saudi monarch King Fahd bin Abdulaziz Al Saud as the liberator of Kuwait; King Abdulla bin Abdulaziz as the saviour of Bahrain and the current King Salman bin Abdulaziz as the champion of Yemen.

What next?

Journalist Mohammed Jamjoom wonders if the airstrikes will pull in other regional players:

And Syrian blogger Rafif Jouejati asks:

Stay tuned for more coverage from Yemen.

Correction: An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that Pakistan was a part of the Saudi-coalition bombing Yemen. Apologies for the error. 

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