Houthis Say U.S. Will Pay ‘Heavy Price’ for Biden Strikes in Yemen

President Joe Biden admitted the Iran-backed Houthis are "terrorists," after revoking form
Mohammed Hamoud, Samuel Corum/AFP, Getty Images

The Shiite Houthi terrorist organization warned on Friday that American President Joe Biden will pay “a heavy price” for authorizing airstrikes alongside the United Kingdom against Houthi assets in Yemen.

The Pentagon and the British Ministry of Defense announced on Thursday that they had coordinated dozens of strikes against strategic Houthi targets intended to limit the terrorists’ ability to disrupt international shipping. The Houthis, who consider themselves the legitimate government of Yemen, declared war on the nation of Israel in October in support of fellow terrorist group Hamas’s invasion of the country on October 7, in which it engaged in a host of atrocities including infanticide, gang rape, torture, abduction, and the desecration of corpses. Hamas killed an estimated 1,200 people and reportedly keeps another 120 hostages in Gaza as of Thursday.

As part of its “war” on Israel, the Houthi group announced that it would launch attacks on allegedly Israeli-linked commercial ships near Yemen. The waters off of Yemen are home to the Bab el-Mandeb Strait, which leads to the Red Sea and the Suez Canal, pivotal international shipping destinations. The Houthis have not limited themselves to targeting Israeli or Israeli-bound ships, attempting to seize or bomb several unrelated vessels. As a result, commercial shipping traffic in the region has dropped 90 percent year-on-year between January 2023 and January 2024, flooding African ports with ships on their way around the Cape of Good Hope.

A ship transits the Suez Canal towards the Red Sea on January 10, 2024, in Ismailia, Egypt. In the wake of Israel’s war on Gaza after the October 7 Hamas attack on Israel, Houthi rebels in Yemen pledged disruption on all ships destined for Israel through the Red Sea’s Suez Canal. The disruption on world trade is evident in the number of companies using this container ship route – a 90 percent decline compared to figures one year ago (Photo by Sayed Hassan/Getty Images).

The Houthis are a Shiite terrorist organization with close links to Iran, the world’s foremost state sponsor of terrorism. Their official slogan is “Allahu Akbar, Death to America, Death to Israel, Curse on the Jews, Victory to Islam.”

Fighters loyal to Yemen's Houthi rebels raise their fists and chant slogans as they visit the grave of slain Huthi political leader Saleh al-Sammad at al-Sabeen square in the capital Sanaa, on January 11, 2021. - In April 2018, al-Sammad, who was on the Saudi-led coalition's wanted list, was killed in what the insurgents said was an air strike by the coalition. (Photo by Mohammed HUWAIS / AFP) (Photo by MOHAMMED HUWAIS/AFP via Getty Images)

Fighters loyal to Yemen’s Houthi rebels raise their fists and chant slogans (MOHAMMED HUWAIS/AFP via Getty Images).

The administration of President Joe Biden removed the Houthis from the State Department’s list of designated Foreign Terrorist Organizations in 2021. In September, shortly before the Hamas attack on Israel, Biden greenlit a deal to unfreeze $6 billion in Iranian assets, while Iran agreed to release five American hostages. The Biden administration insisted, “This is not a ransom.”

“Washington and London must acknowledge responsibility for aggravating the situation at the Red Sea, and the militarization of the body of water,” Brigadier General Abdullah bin Amer, a Houthi leader in the terror group’s “Moral Guidance Department,” said on Friday, according to the Iranian state propaganda outlet PressTV. “They must be ready to embrace a heavy price, and bear all the deleterious consequences of this open aggression.”

Bin Amer promised that the Houthis would “target their bases across the region in case the United States and the United Kingdom increase their attacks.” He also insisted the Houthis would continue their “operations in the Red Sea,” meaning the disruption of international commercial shipping.

Brig. Gen. Yahya Saree, another Houthi spokesman, confirmed the airstrikes on Friday, claiming that the Americans and British conducted 73 bombings of Houthi strategic assets but not specifying what the strikes hit.

“The American and British enemy bears full responsibility for its criminal aggression against our Yemeni people, and it will not go unanswered and unpunished,” Saree warned.

Similarly, PressTV quoted Hussein al-Ezzi, a Houthi “political” leader, as stating, “Washington and London must prepare to pay a heavy price. Our country came under sneak and massive air, ship and submarine strikes. Doubtless, the attacks will cost them dearly.”

According to U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM), the Pentagon office responsible for the Middle East, the airstrikes in Yemen engaged 60 Houthi targets believed to house “radar systems, air defense systems, and storage and launch sites for one-way attack unmanned aerial systems, cruise missiles, and ballistic missiles.” CENTCOM also published some video of the operations:

The British Ministry of Defense offered more detail about the operation’s targets: “One was a site at Bani in north-western Yemen used to launch reconnaissance and attack drones. A number of buildings involved in drone operations were targeted by our aircraft.”

“The other location struck by our aircraft was the airfield at Abbs,” the Defense Ministry statement continued. “Intelligence has shown that it has been used to launch both cruise missiles and drones over the Red Sea. Several key targets at the airfield were identified and prosecuted by our aircraft.”

“Today, at my direction, U.S. military forces—together with the United Kingdom and with support from Australia, Bahrain, Canada, and the Netherlands—successfully conducted strikes against a number of targets in Yemen,” President Biden said in his own statement, “used by Houthi rebels to endanger freedom of navigation in one of the world’s most vital waterways.”

President Joe Biden

President Joe Biden on Jan. 5, 2024 (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

“I will not hesitate to direct further measures to protect our people and the free flow of international commerce as necessary,” he added.

Follow Frances Martel on Facebook and Twitter.


Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.