Share this:

" />
Telesom Dahabshiil

Houthi Scud missiles pose limited threat to Saudi Arabia

ship

File photo of Yemeni soldiers standing guard the North Korean ship So San at Al Mukalla port, 550km southeast of the Yemeni capital, Sanaa on December 17, 2002 after its cargo was unloaded. The ship, which was carrying a cargo of cement bags on top of the Scud missile containers, was intercepted December 9 in the Arabian Sea by Spanish warships. AP Photo

BEIRUT (ANN)Yemen’s Houthi rebels and their allies showed they were able to launch missile attacks on Saudi Arabia when they fired a Scud at the airbase town of Khamis Mushait.

The Saudi military intercepted the missile before it reached its target, and while more Scuds could be coming across the border, the impact of the weapon is likely to be muted due to their clumsy nature and the kingdom’s existing defence system.

Yemen is believed to have several different types of Scud missiles of both North Korean and Soviet origin. During 1994’s civil war between southern separatists and the forces of former president Ali Abdullah Saleh, both sides used Scuds.

In December 2002, Spanish naval vessels stopped an unflagged North Korean cargo ship in the Arabian Sea 950 kilometres off the Horn of Africa. Fifteen Hwasong ballistic missiles – a North Korean variant of the Scud that the country reverse engineered in the 1980s and early 1990s – were found hidden under bags of cement.

The Spanish handed the ship over to the US Navy, but it was eventually allowed to continue on its way after Yemen’s government said it had ordered the missiles for defensive purposes.

The suspicious packing of the vessel raised eyebrows internationally, but Yemeni officials at the time blamed the bootleg-style transfer on the North Korean suppliers.

The North Korean Hwasong-6 missile is said to have a range of between 500 and 700 kilometres, though most sources estimate it at 500km, and can carry a payload of 800kg. The earlier Hwasong-5 has a range of about 300km and can carry a warhead of up to 1,000kg.

On Saturday, the kingdom’s state-run Saudi Press Agency said that the missile targeting Khamis Mushait was launched from the Houthi stronghold of Saada in northern Yemen. Just 185km away from Saada, Khamis Mushait is within reach of all versions of Scud missiles in Yemen.

Saudi Arabia’s largest cities – the capital Riyadh, the western port of Jeddah and the holy city of Mecca – as well as the oil-rich eastern province appear to be out of range of Houthi missiles. But southern cities such as Abha, Khamis Mushait, Najran and Jizan – the last two representing Saudi Arabia’s frontline against Houthi assaults on the kingdom – remain in danger.

It is not clear how many missiles Houthi forces currently have in their arsenal. Yemen’s military was believed to have had 300 Scud missiles when the conflict began – most of which fell under control of Houthi rebels and allied troops loyal to Mr Saleh, the former president.

How far can Yemen’s Scud missiles go? – graphic

On March 28, two days after the Saudi-led bombardment on Yemen began, coalition spokesman Brigadier General Ahmed Assiri said the bombing campaign had destroyed “most” of the rebels’ missile capabilities. On Saturday, Brig Gen Assiri asserted that 80 per cent of Yemen’s 300 or so missiles had been destroyed.

Some previous estimates of Yemen’s missile arsenal from defence analysis groups were much smaller.

On April 20, a coalition strike targeted a Scud missile base in Sanaa, killing 25.

But that still did not eliminate the Houthi’s missile capabilities.

In mid-May, IHS Jane’s Defence Weekly noted a video that appeared to show a portable Scud missile launcher being transported under a tarpaulin in Amran province.

While the attempted use of a Scud against a Saudi town was clearly an escalation in the war, the infamously inaccurate and ineffective ballistic missiles are not likely to change the military balance.

In the past, Scuds have mostly served as a source of terror for civilian populations as opposed to a useful battlefield tool.
The last major, sustained use of Scud missiles came during the Gulf War as Iraq attempted to pelt Israel and Saudi Arabia. Forty-six Scuds were fired at targets in Saudi Arabia and 42 were sent towards Israel over the course of the war. A total of 31 people were killed in the Scud attacks, though 28 of those fatalities came when a Scud scored a direct hit on a US troops barracks in Dhahran.

More Israelis died from stress-induced heart attacks or from suffocating in faulty or improperly worn gas masks during the strikes than from the missiles.

Some Scuds missed their mark by dozens of kilometres, falling harmlessly into the empty desert or into the sea. Others broke up on re-entering the atmosphere.

Scuds were more damaging in the Iran-Iraq war when the countries bombarded one another’s cities with the missiles. Between 1987 and 1988, Iraq launched 200 Scud variants at Tehran, Qom and Isfahan. Without adequate means to defend against the torrent of missiles, up to 2,000 Iranians are believed to have been killed by Iraqi Scuds.

Patriot missiles, produced by the US defence contracting firm Raytheon, were employed by the Saudis to defend against Scuds during the Gulf War and batteries remain in place around Saudi cities and military installations today. The Saudis credit a Patriot missile battery with destroying the Scud bound for Khamis Mushait early on Saturday.

Initially hailed as a silver bullet against ballistic missiles by the US government, their effectiveness was called into question after the Gulf War ended. Though combined with the clumsy nature of the Scud and upgrades to the Patriot since the Gulf War, they have been seen as an adequate defence.
Josh Wood
Foreign Correspondent
Source: foreign.desk@thenational.ae
Araweelo News Network
Somaliland Office
Email info@araweelonews.com
Jaamac132@gmail.com
Twitter: Arraale M Jama @Araweelonews.

Smiley face

About the Author

- Arraale Mohamoud Jaama Freelance Journalist and Human Rights Activist Arraale, is a 20 year experience as a professional Journalist and human rights activist Over the years, worked for the major News Papers in Somaliland as a reporter, editor and contributor. 2008 established website Araweelo News Network, he currently runs a web site based in Somaliland. who is the specializes in the investigation and reporting on issues relating to human rights, democracy, and good governance. contact: Info@araweelonews.com jaamac132@gmail.com Send an SMS or MMS to + 252 63 442 5380 WhatsApp + 252 65 910 7347.

Displaying 14 Comments
Have Your Say
  1. Hi there Dear, are you genuinely visiting this website on a regular basis, if so after that you will definitely take pleasant know-how.

    my site: fhttp://www.kasareviews.com/create-amazon-affiliate-sites-using-fresh-store-builder/

  2. You’ve made some really good points there. I looked on the internet for more information about the issue and found most people will go along with your
    views on this website.

  3. Fantastic beat ! I would like to apprentice while you amend your site, how could i subscribe for
    a blog site? The account aided me a acceptable deal. I had been a little bit acquainted
    of this your broadcast offered bright clear idea

    Here is my web blog http://www.mensfocuslasvegas.com Description: There will always be of different opinions when it reaches…

  4. I read this piece of writing completely concerning the resemblance of latest and preceding technologies,
    it’s amazing article.

  5. xnnquphqcb says:

    V3GzXJ nrpqovcnltdj, [url=http://ttsdhdaetwjt.com/]ttsdhdaetwjt[/url], [link=http://tozsllzzlbpy.com/]tozsllzzlbpy[/link], http://ppfjtezehuhg.com/

  6. I am actually glad to glance at this web site posts which consists of tons
    of helpful data, thanks for providing these information.

  7. Great blog here! Additionally your site loads
    up fast! What web host are you the usage of?

    Can I get your associate link on your host? I want my website loaded up as quickly as yours lol

  8. Wow that was odd. I just wrote an extremely long comment but after
    I clicked submit my comment didn’t show up. Grrrr…
    well I’m not writing all that over again. Anyways, just wanted to say wonderful blog!

  9. Fastidious answers in return of this matter with solid arguments and telling the whole thing on the topic of that.

  10. This site was… how do you say it? Relevant!! Finally
    I have found something which helped me. Cheers!

    Here is my homepage fresh store builder review

  11. This is my first time pay a quick visit at here and i am truly happy to read all at single place.

  12. Greetings I am so grateful I found your web site, I really found you by mistake, while
    I was looking on Yahoo for something else, Regardless I am here now and would just like to say cheers for a tremendous post and
    a all round interesting blog (I also love the theme/design), I don’t have time to read
    it all at the moment but I have bookmarked it and also added
    your RSS feeds, so when I have time I will be
    back to read a great deal more, Please do keep up the
    superb work.

  13. bikiniluxe says:

    It’s very easy to find out any topic on web as compared to books, as I
    found this post at this site.

    Look at my web blog :: bikiniluxe

  14. Hi, I check your blogs like every week. Your writing style is awesome, keep doing what you’re doing!

    Feel free to surf to my website … project free tv

Leave a comment

XHTML: You can use these html tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Advertisement

Smiley face

Araweelo is an Associated Network News, The most trusted source for news & Political,investigator report,Human Rights Issues,Educations,Social and Democracy ,Latest News Horn of Africa. runs Arraale Mohamoud Jama Freelance Journalist and Human Rights Activist based in Somaliland.

Chat with us on WhatsApp