Earlier today, Houthi rebels in Yemen (translated from Yemeni, Houthi means “iranaian stooge”) lobbed another SCUD-type missile towards the Saudi capital of Riyadh. This is from CNN, so it may or may not be true:
The Saudi Arabia-led coalition fighting Houthi rebels in Yemen has said it intercepted a ballistic missile south of Riyadh on Tuesday, according to Saudi state television station Al Ekhbariya. The missile did not cause any damage.
The missile was heading to a residential area in the Saudi capital, before it was intercepted, Saudi Arabia’s official news agency reported.
A Houthi rebel spokesperson Mohammed AbdulSalam said on his Twitter account that the rebels fired the Burkan 2H ballistic missile, targeting the prestigious Yamama Palace hotel in the Saudi capital. The Burkan missile is an Iranian-modified scud missile.
Here are some visuals. First we have the launch:
— Joseph Dempsey (@JosephHDempsey) December 19, 2017
This video provides, according to arms control experts, pretty conclusive proof that the Burkan (Volcano) missile the Houthi’s have been using is actually the Iranian Qaim-1. The lineage of the missile is important. It is a shorter range version of the Iranian Shahab-2 which is the North Korean Hwasong-6 built under license in Iran. This is actually the Soviet SCUD-C. Nikki Haley made this connection in her briefing last week when she presented the debris from the last Houthi missile launched at Riyadh.
Evidence is compelling. Some components are of Iranian origin, unique arrangement of fueling/venting ports on missile body, and most importantly, the airframe/tanks are made of an aluminum alloy. Scud-B and -C missiles made of stainless steel. This is an Iranian Qiam missile. pic.twitter.com/bJ7cUjMJIU
— Michael Elleman (@EllemanIISS) December 14, 2017
And we have the shootdown:
— Zubair (@zeeinscriptions) December 19, 2017
This is just cranking up the pressure on the Saudi leadership to do something. Inevitably, one of these things is going to leak through and do a great deal of damage to Riyadh or some other Saudi city. The fact that Iran is the obvious supplier (I’m not really sure what kind of naif believed the Houthi’s had a home-grown ballistic missile program but they are out there) increases the incentive of the Saudis to become more aggressive in their blockade of Yemen and more brutal in their war there.