Current Events

Houthis at a Glance

The Houthis are an armed political and religious group which champions Yemen's Shia Muslim minority, the Zaidis. The Houthis routinely use child soldiers in combat, impose a regressive code of Sharia, have been accused of enslaving African migrants, and are about to be re-classified as a terrorist organization by the U.S. Department of State.

The American invasion of Iraq in 2003 deeply radicalized the Houthi movement, and the 2014 war with U.S.-backed Saudi Arabia strengthened their ties to Iran and to Hezbollah in Lebanon, whose leadership provided a role model for the Houthis. The Houthis adopted the slogan “God is great, death to the U.S., death to Israel, curse the Jews, and victory for Islam,” in the wake of the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq. True to their hateful slogan, the Houthis expelled the last Jews of Yemen, forcibly ending a two-thousand-year-old community.

Houthi Child Soldiers

Following the Hamas attack on Israel in October, the Houthis, in what they claimed was a show of solidarity with Palestinians, began to launch a series of attacks against civilian mercantile ships traveling with cargo through the Red Sea, regardless of the ships’ destinations. In this timeframe, approximately 30 strikes have occurred, with most missing their targets. The United States, along with a multi-national coalition of partners, joined an international security effort designed to protect merchant ships and maritime transit that recently targeted several Houthi missile launch sites within Yemen. “We’re not looking for a war. We’re not looking to expand this,” National Security Council spokesman John Kirby told reporters on January 14. “The Houthis have a choice to make and they still have time to make the right choice, which is stop these reckless attacks.”

Never missing an opportunity to err on the side of what’s wrong, the New York chapter of the Democratic Socialist of America have launched a “Hands off Yemen” campaign that ties the U.S.-backed airstrikes on the Houthis to their Gaza “genocide” framing. Several DSA-backed elected officials and candidates have also hosted phone banks (or are scheduled to host one) to rally support for the Houthi terrorist organization and encourage the United States to stop bombing Houthi missile installations in Yemen.