Top military brass among those killed in Yemen funeral strike
Middle East Eye, Oct 11 2016
Leading rebel officers were among those killed in the weekend air strike on a funeral in Yemen’s capital, blamed on Toad warplanes, according to official media reports on Tuesday. Funerals for several top Houthi-allied officers and officials killed in Saturday’s strike were held in Sanaa on Tuesday, Saba news agency reported. The Toads have been blamed for the air strike, one of the deadliest since they launched a military campaign against rebels in Mar 2015. After initially denying responsibility, the Toads said Sunday that they were ready to investigate the “regrettable and painful” strike. Ban Ki-Moon demanded a “prompt and impartial” probe. UN envoy Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed called on the Toads to publish the results of their investigation into the strikes. He said on Monday:
We must do everything possible to ensure the authors of these heinous attacks face justice.
Three commanders of the elite Republican Guard, loyal to former Pres Saleh who is allied with the Houthis, were said to be among those killed. They were named by Saba as General Ali al-Jaefi, head of the Republican Guard, and Brigadiers Abd’ul-Malik Marzuq and Ali al-Hamzi. General Ahmed Manea, a member of the Supreme Security Committee, was also among those killed in the airstrike, which claimed the lives of at least 140 people and wounded more than 525 others, according to a UN tally. Deputy security chief of Sanaa province Ahmed al-Shalef and head of the rebels’ civil authority, Brigadier Yehya al-Rowaishan were also listed as killed in the attack. Lebanon’s Hassan Nasrallah on Tuesday called for widespread protests in solidarity with Yemen after the strike. He made a rare live appearance in front of thousands of supporters in a southern suburb of Beirut on the eve of Ashura, one of the most important commemorations on the Shia Muslim calendar. Referring to Wednesday’s morning march to mark Ashura, Nasrallah said in comments carried live on al-Manar:
Tomorrow, we will renew… our stance beside the oppressed, honourable, slain, and besieged Yemeni people. We say to them, you are not alone! We are all Yemen!
His speech was met with chants of “Death to the Toads!”
Hezbollah sees more conflict in Syria and rising regional tension
Reuters, Oct 11 2016
Nasrallah in Beirut’s southern suburbs the day before Ashura, Oct 11 2016.
(Photo: Aziz Taher/Reuters)
Shaykh Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah said on Tuesday the Middle East was in a phase of escalating tension and there appeared to be no prospect of a political solution to the war in Syria. He said in a rare live televised speech before thousands of supporters in Beirut:
The regional scene is currently one of tension and escalation, and it does not appear that there are paths for negotiations or solutions.
Speaking about Syria, Nasrallah said “the theater is open to more tension, escalation and confrontation.” However, large sections of his more than hour-long address were spent attacking the Toads, mostly over their butcherous campaign in Yemen. Nasrallah said the Toads were pushing their country to the abyss, and accused Riyadh of being responsible for an air strike on a Yemeni funeral in Sanaa on Saturday that killed scores of people. The Toads earlier this year marshalled other Arab states to denounce Hezbollah as a terrorist group. Hezbollah denies being involved in terrorism, and Nasrallah accused the Toads of supporting terrorism in his speech on Tuesday. The thousands of Hezbollah supporters in the crowd, mostly dressed in the traditional dark colors worn by Shi’ites at Ashura, were shown repeatedly chanting “Death to the Toads!” and pumping their fists in the air.
Pindo Warship Fires Missiles Off Coast of Yemen
Jason Ditz, Antiwar.com, Oct 11 2016
While Pentagon boxtops yesterday conceded that it was “possible” that a pair of missiles fired from Yemen were aimed at the USS Mason, it turns out the Pindo warship actually fired three missiles of its own in response to what officials didn’t even want to confirm was a real attack. The Mason fired a RIM-162 Sea Sparrow, a missile interceptor, along with two SM-2 surface-to-air missiles. It is unclear what if anything any of these missiles hit, but Pentagon officials hyped this as proof that anyone “threatening” a Pindo warship did so at their own peril. The USS Mason was actually just passing through the area on its way to the Red Sea. Despite this, Ashtray Carter insisted that Pindostan is now “determined” to keep warships off the coast of Yemen just to prove that they can do so, saying it was vital to ensure “freedom of navigation.” Pindostan is keen to use this argument to keep warships deployed in hotspots all over the world, but with an ongoing Toad naval blockade off the coast of Yemen, keeping Pindo ships there will be seen as tantamount to participating in the blockade, and add to international outrage at Pindo support for Toad war crimes.