After the Trump administration's out-the-door decision to designate Yemen's Iranian-backed rebels as a terror organization, Aid agencies warn the decision could wreck the tenuous relief system keeping millions alive.
Critics of the Houthi rebels in Yemen say they are in league with Iran, a claim the rebels deny. But no one denies the Houthis are partnered with an ally much closer to home: Yemen's onetime dictator Ali Abdullah Saleh, who remains a force in Yemen and may have billions of dollars at his disposal.
A day after Houthi forces failed to seize the airport and destroy the presidential palace in Yemen's second city, Aden, several suicide bombers brought violence to the Houthi-controlled Yemeni capital, Sanaa. Amidst the chaos, it is hard to know who orchestrated the attacks.
What's it feel like to watch your country succumb to revolution from afar? Ask Yemeni student Ibrahim al-Hajiby. He watched the Arab Spring engulf Yemen in 2011 from his college in Minnesota, and he's doing the same now as Houthi rebels take over the Yemeni government.
The Houthi insurgency may be low on the radar of American worries in Yemen, the but the Shiite group is now in the streets of the capital and fighting government forces. And that battle could hand an opportunity to the group Western nations are focused on: al-Qaeda.