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What comes after Tikrit?

By Diane L. Maye
Special Contributor for In Homeland Security

Recently, after a month-long military operation, the Iraqi government declared victory over the Islamic State in the city of Tikrit, the hometown of Saddam Hussein and a stronghold for IS forces.

Tikrit’s recapture could not have been accomplished without the help of a popular mobilization movement known as the Hash’d al Shaabi, which consists of primarily Shi’ia paramilitary groups, and coordination from Iranian military advisors from the elite Iranian Revolutionary Guard’s Quds Force.

Iran Deploys Navy off Coast of Yemen

By William Tucker
Chief Correspondent for In Homeland Security

Iranian media outlets Press TV and Fars News Agency both reported that Iran’s 34th naval flotilla has been dispatched to the waters off Yemen and the Horn of Africa. The stated mission of the flotilla is to protect tankers and cargo ships flying the Iranian flag and will also engage in counter-piracy operations.

Bombing the Sand in Yemen

By Brett Daniel Shehadey
Special Contributor for In Homeland Security

Instead of stability, the U.S. focused on al-Qaida in the Arab Peninsula (AQAP) as the threat, completely ignoring the socio-political fragility and lack of necessary institutions there. America is becoming more tactically proficient at becoming strategically deficient in the complex socio-political landscape of the Middle East.

Officials: Saudi-led action relied on US intelligence

Saudi Arabia told the Obama administration and Persian Gulf allies early this week that it was preparing a military operation in neighboring Yemen, and relied heavily on U.S. surveillance ­images and targeting information to carry it out, according to senior American and Persian Gulf officials.

Despite days of planning for possible airstrikes, officials said, the Saudis withheld a final decision until it became clear late Wednesday that Houthi rebels were poised to take over Aden, the country’s main southern port.

In Yemen, Iran Inherits Another Sinking Ship

By Brett Daniel Shehadey
Special Contributor for In Homeland Security

Yesterday, Iranian-linked rebels were reported as enforcing violent control of the capital of Yemen, attacking protestors to their rule. The violence triggered Washington to abandon its embassy in Sanaa. Britain and France followed suit, exiting the country of a diplomatic presence.

In 2013, the embassy had already been reduced to essential staff only prior to abandoning it yesterday, but, in theory, no U.S.