The Saudis are increasingly desperate to find a way out of the Yemeni quagmire. They apparently believe Yemen's ex-dictator, their longtime enemy Ali Abdullah Saleh, can help.
A Russian medical team flew into Sanaa on Oct. 11 with the approval of the Saudis, who control Yemeni airspace. The Russian surgeons then performed a life-saving procedure on the 75-year-old Saleh. Some reports say the surgery took place at the Russian Embassy in the capital. Saleh's exact health issue is unclear, but it apparently is a result of the severe burns and other injuries he suffered during an assassination attempt in 2011. At the time, the Saudis rushed him to a hospital in the kingdom, where his life was saved. He formally gave up the presidency the next year.