Pentagon: Houthis Shoot Down U.S. Reaper Drone

February 21, 2024

Initial indications are that it was shot down by a Houthi surface-to-air-missile.

Pentagon Deputy Press Secretary Sabrina Singh on Tuesday confirming that Iran-backed Houthis shot down a United States MQ-9 Reaper drone on Monday, which “went down off the coast of Houthi-controlled areas in Yemen, in the Red sea.”

Why It Matters: In the second downing of a U.S. Reaper drone in the past few months, this attack reflects continued escalation amid the Iran-backed Houthi attacks on maritime ships in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden.

Important Context: Over the weekend, Houthi attacks on shipping increased as the U.S. continued launching self-defense strikes against Houthi targets in Yemen, including targeting a Houthiunmanned underwater vessel on Saturday (the first time the U.S. observed Houthis employ this capability since their attacks began in the fall).

Read More: Houthis shot down Reaper drone in Yemen, Pentagon confirms (Stars and Stripes)

Deputy Pentagon Press Secretary Sabrina Singh Holds a Press Conference (U.S. Department of Defense)

Photo Details & Credit: “An MQ-9 Reaper flies a training mission over the Nevada Test and Training Range, July 15, 2019. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class William Rio Rosado)”

by Leah Grainery, based in Texas