3. Yemen Civil War
Okay, you’ve probably heard of the Yemen Civil War. It’s mentioned reasonably often by the world media, usually in passing. What you may not realize is that at least 10,000 people have already died, and that the country has essentially collapsed into a failed state.
Right now, most global attention is focused on the Syrian civil war. Hundreds of thousands have died in Syria, Meanwhile, Russia and the United States, among others, are heavily evolved. Regardless, the situation continues to deteriorate in Yemen, but the world media isn’t paying much attention.
The conflict in Yemen boils down to the centuries old conflict between Sunni and Shia muslims. President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, who has controlled Yemen since February of 2012, is a Sunni Muslim. The Yemeni government itself is largely comprised of Sunni Muslims, and has been propped up by the Sunni government in Saudi Arabia.
The Rebels, on the other hand, are primarily comprised of Shia Muslims. The so-called Houthis, these Shia Muslims have been fighting against the Sunni-led governments since 2004, and now control huge swaths of western Yemen, the most densely populated area of the country.
Many believe that the Houthis are being supported by Iran, which is predominately Shia. Iran and Saudi Arabia have long fought proxy wars and battles across the Middle East, primarily along the Shia-Sunni divide. Saudi Arabia, meanwhile, has already put boots on the ground, and has launched a constant barrage of air strikes.
Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) also controls large, usually sparsely population regions, primarily in eastern Yemen. This branch of Al-Queda is viewed by many security experts as the most capable and well-equipped branch of Al-Queda. Fighters aligned with the Islamic State are also involved.
The situation in Yemen has only continued to worsen, with a humanitarian disaster now brewing. Reports of starvation, a lack of excess to health care, air raids hitting civilian targets, and other serious issues are rampant.