- The Washington Times - Thursday, March 26, 2015

Intelligence files on American operations in Yemen are now in the possession of an Iran-backed militia in Yemen, U.S. officials said Wednesday.

The names of U.S. informants and counterterrorism strike plans were given to Iranian officials by Yemini officials who switched allegiance to Houthi militias, the Los Angeles Times reported Wednesday.

The newspaper reported that the compromised intelligence files, which were taken from Yemen’s National Security Bureau, influenced President Obama’s decision to evacuate personnel from the U.S. Embassy in Sanaa last month and to pull U.S. special operations forces from the region last weekend.

The intelligence officials said that some Yemini personnel who remained loyal to President Abdu Rabu Mansour Hadi’s government were able to burn some files, the Los Angeles Times reported. The newspaper’s sources asked to remain anonymous due to the sensitivity of the operations.

“The news from Yemen is all bad,” said Rep. Adam B. Schiff of California, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, the Los Angeles Times reported. “I have to think that given the magnitude of the support we have given and the rapidity with which large portions of Yemen fell to Houthis, that a significant portion of military support is now in the hands of people who are not our friends,” he added.

• Douglas Ernst can be reached at dernst@washingtontimes.com.

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