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Drones Jolt a Persian Gulf Focused on Iran’s Nuclear Ambitions

  • Armed groups are increasingly able to target key facilities
  • UAE presented itself as oasis of stability in troubled region
The Abu Dhabi National Oil Co. fuel depot following a drone strike in Abu Dhabi, on Jan. 17

The Abu Dhabi National Oil Co. fuel depot following a drone strike in Abu Dhabi, on Jan. 17

Source: Planet Labs PBC/AP Photo

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The drones that struck near Abu Dhabi’s airport and an oil depot this week served as a jolting reminder of an uncomfortable military reality: the ability of armed groups to target critical infrastructure using cheap, hard-to-repel weapons.

Monday’s attack by Yemen’s Iran-backed Houthi fighters set fuel trucks ablaze, briefly disrupted air transit and killed three people. But its impact went further.