Alwaght- Eight years ago, the Saudi-led Arab coalition waged an unfair war against Yemen under the cover of reinstalling resigned Yemeni President Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi for a submissive government. But as they moved ahead, they shifted their goals, and economic aspects outweighed the political ones. Although the aggression was initially led by Saudi Arabia, not long later, the UAE took the initiative and by scaling down its cooperation with Saudi Arabia, tried to advance its ambitious plans in Yemen. In association with southern separatist proxies, Abu Dhabi dominated parts of the south and by establishing its presence and took control of Socotra island. The strategic island’s distance from mainland Yemen gave the UAE a good opportunity to occupy it.
Meanwhile, news reports suggest that the Emiratis have involved the Israelis in their occupational plans in southern Yemen, and Tel Aviv is now building a toehold there.
The UAE, which after normalizing relations with the Israeli regime, is trying to increase its interactions with Tel Aviv at all levels, has also upgraded the level of its cooperation with the Israelis in Yemen. Although, in recent years, many news reports have been published about the presence of Israelis and their participation in the Saudi coalition, this time other aspects of this cooperation have been revealed, showing that the Emiratis are rewarding the Yemeni territory to the them as if it is theirs.
Mahmoud Fatah Ali al-Khajeh, an Emirati official serving as an architect of Israeli-Emirati relations, has reportedly bought vast lands in Socotra's mountainous area. The purchase reportedly followed an Israeli military delegation’s visit in September to the island. The mountains serve like a natural fortress with a strategic position.
Local sources reported last month that the Israeli regime sent its military experts to the occupied island of Socotra through the UAE, and an Israeli military delegation along with a number of UAE intelligence officers explored the island. Even with the help of the UAE, the Israelis plan to build a runway for combat drones and military helicopters in the southern part of the island.
Socotra Island is one of the important areas that is currently under the control of the Emirates and its mercenaries. Abu Dhabi aspires to annex it to its territory.
Rich resources and extraordinary nature tempted the UAE to seize the opportunity during the war and occupy it. Recently, Sana'a leaders announced that the Saudi coalition has plundered more than $1 billion worth of this country's oil during the six-month ceasefire period, and if Socotra is fully occupied, the UAE will also gain a large fortune from the sale of the island's resources. By buying land from the islanders at a low price and transferring its mercenaries and nationals to the island, the UAE is trying to change its demographic composition, which is the same project that the Israeli regime implemented in the Palestinian territories eight decades ago.
Israeli dominance of maritime routes
The strategic location in the Red Sea has long given the Yemeni islands an important place in the security strategies of the Israeli regime. Socotra Island, with an area of 3,796 square kilometers, is a very important area. It is located at the entrance to the Gulf of Aden and the Strait of Bab-el-Mandeb and plays a vital role in the transportation of goods and oil between the western and eastern hemispheres of the world, and that is why the UAE and the Israelis have long aspired to occupy it. This region also has complete overlook over the Horn of Africa, and from this point of view, it is very important for Tel Aviv.
Having in mind that 70 percent of the Israeli trade with the outside world is done through sea, dominating the shipping routes is of particular importance for this regime. A large part of the Israeli regime's exports to East Asia, India and the Persian Gulf are done through the Red Sea; therefore, it is seeking a share in the control of shipping routes in the Indian Ocean and the Arabian Sea through military presence in Socotra Island. By dominating the region, Tel Aviv can ensure the security of its maritime trade and threaten the interests of regional competitors.
Actually, by building military bases in Socotra, the UAE and Israeli regime can monitor the movement of ships in Bab-el-Mandeb and the Horn of Africa and improve the security of their commercial ships. With Bab-el-Mandeb now under the control of Yemen's Ansarullah Movement, Israeli and Arab coalition's ships are within range of the movement's missiles. Domination of Socotra grants them intelligence dominance over this strait.
In recent months, Iranian warships intensified their movement in the Red Sea. This Iranian presence is deemed by the Israelis a big threat to their interests. By establishing a military presence in Bab-el-Mandeb and Socotra, the Israelis think they can counter Iranian moves.
The Israelis do not tolerate Bab-el-Mandeb being under control of a force allied to Iran and this is providing them with a driving force to push Ansarullah out of the strait and take control of it. Ansarullah sees the Israelis accomplices to the Saudi and Emirati crimes in Yemen, and threats to Tel Aviv are set to increase in the future. The leaders of Ansarullah have repeatedly warned that if Tel Aviv continues its adventures in Yemen, they will target the occupied territories with their missiles, and this issue has created panic among Tel Aviv leaders who do not hide their concerns about it.
With its presence in southern Yemen, the Israeli regime is trying to get out of its intelligence and military isolation and to improve its deterrent power against the Axis of Resistance. With its creeping actions in Socotra, this regime is trying to turn this area into the center of its espionage operations while plundering its energy resources.
Since the US is planning to station a drone fleet on the Persian Gulf, the Israeli presence in Socotra provides intelligence and logistics to the Western-Arab alliance.
Also, by getting a toehold, in the Yemeni island and settling Israelis in its regions, it can bolster its presence in the Persian Gulf, making a bridge out of the UAE to realization of its goals in the region. Influence in the Arab countries is a long-held Israeli wish to break its historical isolation.
Feeling endangered by the Yemenis in recent years, the UAE is trying to, with the help of the Israelis, establish a security umbrella for itself. Already providing worthy services to the Israelis by normalizing to them, the UAE this time is granting Yemen's land to the Israeli occupation in return for arms assistance. In recent months, new reports talked about sale of Israeli air defenses to the UAE. This deal was eventually done.
Satellite images taken from the UAE show the deployment of at least two Israeli-made Barak air defense in the Arab country, which, according to the Israeli media, have been deployed to defend against a range of air threats from Iran. According to satellite images released by Tactical Report, batteries and an Elta EL/M-2084 radar have been deployed near Al-Dhafra Air Base near Abu Dhabi.
This deployment comes as Ansarullah has warned that even Israeli weapons cannot protect the Arab monarchy’s security against its missiles and drones. Before this, the American-made Patriot air defenses, which outperform the Barak missiles, have been serving in the UAE but proved a failure when intercepting Yemen missiles and drones.
The Emirati and Israeli efforts to establish their occupation in Socotra comes against the backdrop of Ansarullah's warnings to the aggression countries to leave Yemen as soon as possible for immunity to its missiles. Ansarullah leaders have repeatedly asserted that they are powerful enough to retake their energy resources and territories from the aggressors, and a drone attack in Al-Dhaba oil terminal that targeted a Saudi oil tanker was a warning shot for the coalition. Therefore, with the continuation of the occupation, Ansarullah will have no resort but starting a new round of missile and drone attacks deep in Saudi Arabia and the UAE. With the movement having gained new capabilities in drone and missile technologies during the truce, the upcoming war will be way more massive.