SANAA, Yemen — On March 25, tribal gunmen loyal to Yemen's Houthis, along with Yemeni military forces, tightened their siege on the southern city of Aden, which President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi declared as a temporary capital after he fled there from Sanaa more than six weeks ago.
Two weeks earlier, Houthi gunmen, in conjunction with some Yemeni army units, conducted a military exercise in Saada province on Saudi Arabia's southern border. These Houthi activities may have been the direct cause of the largest-ever bombing campaign against Yemen, which has not fought a war with another country in 80 years. Ongoing internal wars, however, have torn Yemen apart — including the current one between Hadi's forces and the Houthis; al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) and the army; and the six wars between 2004 and 2009 in Saada between the Houthis and the government. Yet, March 26 was a defining moment in Yemen’s modern history, as Sanaa residents woke up to the sounds of continuing airstrikes.