Dubai - The UAE's security is linked to that of Yemen. The UAE's role in defending Yemeni territory also means it is defending its own national security, welfare and stability of its people.
The fear of turning Yemen into a subservient state of Iran through its Houthi proxies is just one of the reasons that justifies participation of the UAE in the Saudi-led Arab coalition. Restoring legitimacy as well as security, order and stability to the country is yet another reason.
In order to make people aware of the country's priorities, the Emirates Centre for Strategic Studies and Research (ECSSR), in collaboration with the Ministry of Education, has lined up a number of lectures to be delivered to students of government schools. The lectures are expected to give them an opportunity to take part in national dialogue and to understand the real reasons behind the coalition.
The UAE's security is linked to that of Yemen. The UAE's role in defending Yemeni territory also means it is defending its own national security, welfare and stability of its people. If Yemen is left to drown in chaos and is allowed to be controlled by terror groups with foreign links, there is a possibility of a spill-over of the trouble into the UAE.
Preserving the Arab identity of Yemen is of utmost importance. If the country is ruled by Houthis, it will be annexed by Iran, which already harbours plans to obliterate the identity of the whole Arab region.
Thirdly, Emirati morals, passed down through generations, have made the country respond to the call of the legitimate Yemeni government and to support brethren of the war-torn country, and protect them. So the UAE took part in the GCC initiative, which has laid down the basics for a peaceful solution to the Yemeni crisis, and also submitted several initiatives to settle the crisis peacefully. But when the Houthis failed to respect any of these, the UAE resorted to military action.
Protection of Arab national security is another reason for being part of the coalition. Yemen is in control of the strategic Bab Al Mandab Strait, through which tankers laden with a large portion of oil meant for export to the world pass. A Houthi control on Yemen can turn the country into an arena of sectarian conflict, and thus inhibit the free sail of these tankers.
Moreover, a Houthi control of Yemen will be a repeat of Lebanon's Hezbollah experience, and turn it into a permanent threat to the GCC countries.
The sixth reason for the UAE joining the coalition is to put an end to the danger of an Iranian expansion in the region. If Iran controls Yemen, it will be encouraged to excert further interfere in the internal affairs of the GCC.
Defending Islamic holy places, and standing hand-in-hand with Saudi Arabia are important to the UAE. Any threat to the kingdom is a direct threat to the UAE.
The eighth reason is preventing Iran from devastating Yemen, as it did in Iraq and Lebanon. Tehran had turned the two states into battlegrounds with the aim of controlling the resources of the two war-torn countries.