King Salman of Saudi Arabia has reunited a coalition to rehabilitate ex-President Hadi, who was banished by a revolution in Yemen. As soon as Aden was taken by the revolutionaries, Saudi Arabia mobilised more than de 100,000 men and 100 bombers to attack that country.

The military coalition led by Saudi Arabia also includes Bahrein, the United Arab Emirates, Jordan, Koweït, Morocco, Qatar and Sudan (all are monarchies and members of the Gulf Cooperation Council, plus Sudan, which is governed by a dissident branch of the Muslim Brotherhood). The coalition is supported politically by Egypt and Pakistan. The United States supplies them with information gathered by satellite.

Although it was requested by President Hadi, the intervention of Saudi Arabia and its allies is illegal according to international law, and constitutes an aggression.

The intervention by Saudi Arabia makes little sense unless it is extended by a ground attack - but it is difficult to project an invasion of this sort after the Saudi defeat of 2009.

The United States has so far stayed away from the conflict, thinking that the country would split into two like during the end of the Cold War. Symbolically, they closed their embassy and withdrew their special forces.

The Houthis are strongly in the majority. Allies of the partisans of ex-President Saleh, they have had no trouble controlling the whole country.

The Houthi Chiites and their Sunni allies both claim to fight in the wake of Imam Khomeiny’s Revolution, and their victory was celebrated as such by Iran.

As for President Hadi, he is supported both by the monarchies and by al-Qaïda. However, he has condemned the mega-atrocities against the Chiites committed by the Islamic Emirate (Daesh).

Pete Kimberley