Joe Biden’s National Security Organization has rebranded what appears to be a failing Red Sea effort into two failed efforts after another round of gnat-bite attacks against terrorists who target shipping in international waters.
According to two US officials, the United States has named its ongoing operation in Yemen to target Houthi assets “Operation Poseidon Archer.”
The name of the operation indicates a more formal, organized, and possibly long-term approach in Yemen. While the US has been attacking Houthi infrastructure, the Iran-backed rebels have vowed to continue targeting commercial vessels on the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden.
Since the first attack, which was carried out jointly with the UK army on 11 January, the US has attacked Houthi targets seven times in Yemen. One official stated that the first wave of strikes by the US and UK, which targeted approximately 30 sites in Houthi-controlled Yemen marked the start of Operation Poseidon Archer.
Officials stressed that Operation Poseidon Archer was separate from Operation Prosperity Guardian. This is a defensive alliance of nations that have committed assets and personnel for bolstering the security in the Red Sea. The US and UK are among the 20+ nations that make up the coalition. They have intercepted missile and drone launches launched from Houthi-controlled areas in Yemen.
It was obvious from the beginning that Operation Prosperity Guardian would fail. Anyone who even casually follows the Yemen civil conflict could have easily discredited the concept that US naval force would overwhelm the Houthis. Operation Prosperity Guardian rapidly became a US/UK operation. Egypt, which has a major strategic and financial interest in the Red Sea trade, refused to take part. The majority of our allies were also against the goat rope. Reliable social media accounts reported that the main concern was the fear of National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan running the operation from the National Security Council. CNN claims that 20 countries are involved counting staff officers who have been sent to the operation headquarters in Bahrain.
Operation Prosperity Guardian, as I said, is a shambles if its purpose is to protect freedoms of navigation. Insurance costs have risen, major insurance companies won’t insure US/UK ships in the Red Sea, and Suez Canal traffic has decreased compared to the time of the pandemic.
Operation Poseidon Archer, the newly born Operation, has no more reason to be viewed as a critical operation than Operation Prosperity Guardian.
NatSec Daily reports that President JOE BIDEN is working on this right now. They believe that no one thing will force militants to stop launching missiles. Over weeks, if not months, it will take a combination of factors including a reduction in the fighting between Israel Hamas, and Gaza.
Senior administration officials explained it as follows. U.S. airstrikes on Houthi targets and the interdiction of ships carrying weapons into Yemen will reduce the ability of militants to continue shooting at vessels. The designation of the Houthis last week as terrorists will lead to increased sanctions, depriving the fighters of resources they use to fund their operations.
The attacks by the US, its allies, and other countries are nothing more than a public-relations strategy to convince insurance companies that the Red Sea was safer than previously thought. Biden’s advisors chose targets that will not achieve the mission. The strikes, except for two moderately-sized attacks against the Houthis and the general threat, have been calculated to address the immediate threat.
Biden’s strategy, as I have noted, seems to cause the minimum damage necessary to “send an important message.” About twelve hours before the first major attack against the Houthis, information was leaked. This was enough time to make sure no one would be hurt, and that only the equipment directly related to the attacks on shipping were hit. The command and control centers, and the Houthi leaders were not targeted.
The Houthis are far from deterred and seem eager to fight.
The Biden strategy, if you want to get to the core of it, is to wait until the Israel-Hamas War ends and the political fallout settles, then declare victory once the Houthis cease shooting and leave.
Biden’s National Security Council is a prime example of how “hope” can be a very effective method. Hope is the only thing that Ukraine, China, or Houthis have to offer in terms of strategic abilities.
The official said that eventually, other countries with interests in the open sea lanes, such as China, will call for an end to this shipping crisis, which has caused prices to rise and lives at risk. Israel’s plan to conduct more targeted operations in Gaza may result in fewer civilian deaths, which could weaken Houthis’ arguments for defending the Palestinians. The end of the war will remove this rallying cry.
China will not get involved in the conflict for two main reasons. We are giving China a wealth of operational and intelligence information. Three surface combatants are in the area, and they are analyzing our strike methods and collecting signal intelligence. Second, Chinese vessels are not being targeted. Some shippers use the automatic identification system to identify themselves or their Chinese affiliation.
Greek tanker KRITI STATE carrying Russian oil to China is broadcasting in Red Sea on AIS to Houthis declaring V[ES]SL NO CNTACT ISRAEL https://t.co/5peQdvsDsR “Savvy political navigation”, American rivals call it. pic.twitter.com/jQFakE6Wcn
— Dances_with_Bears (@bears_with) December 29, 2023
Don’t worry about Chinese ships! The proportion of China-linked ships in Red Sea has markedly increased despite Houthi attacks. Ships are rewriting their destinations on the AIS to tell the Houthis their crews are “CHINESE” or “ALL CHINESE”. https://t.co/43FANGEXEn pic.twitter.com/vC0pOLIUvT
— Nina DN ❤️🇨🇳 (@ninadn21) January 21, 2024
Israel, the Houthis’ target, has no interest in ensuring the Red Sea is safe for ships that are not bound for Israel. Israel has a vested interest in the US’s hammering of the Houthis.
Two ways are available. The Biden White House could abandon the cause and let the Houthis take control of the Red Sea. It would be another strategic defeat for the Biden White House. Alternative: Go after the Houthis and destroy their ability of piracy and command and control, as well as to capture shipping targets. Along the way, they must kill every Houthi who comes out of his bunker.