Wall Street Journal

The Houthis May Embolden Beijing

In the Indo-Pacific, doubts emerge that the US can manage simultaneous crises.

Ravenel B. Curry III Distinguished Fellow in Strategy and Statesmanship
The Houthis May Embolden Beijing
Houthi followers carry weapons as they march over an American flag during a rally against the US-led aerial attacks on Yemen on March 9, 2024, in Sanaa, Yemen. (Photo by Mohammed Hamoud/Getty Images)

World leaders know that what happens in the Middle East doesn’t stay there. As Israel warns Gazans to evacuate Rafah and negotiators haggle over cease-fire terms, the effect of Middle East hostilities on the geopolitics of the Indo-Pacific continues to deepen.

First and most directly, the Middle East war is expanding. On May 4, Iranian state media reported that the Shahid Mahdavi, a former container ship converted to carry and launch fixed-wing drones and helicopters and equipped with sophisticated electronic equipment, had crossed the equator in the Indian Ocean. The move came as the Houthis reiterated their threats to target ships from the Red Sea as far south as the Cape of Good Hope.

Read the full article in the Wall Street Journal.