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Thread: Yemen: all you want (2011-2015)

  1. #81
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    Default Yemen: Beyond Resolution 2051

    Yemen: Beyond Resolution 2051

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  2. #82
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default A positive view: Part 2

    Helen Lackner returns with a "boots on the ground" assessment of the situation in the Yemen:http://www.opendemocracy.net/helen-l...hose-interests

    Rightly she lauds the critical role of non-government factors in defeating AQAP in the southern provinces; yes, once again tribes came to the fore. Her wider cautionary remarks on the weakness of the Yemeni state are familiar, although I expect the West and other friends downplay what the Yemeni people wants are.

    In parallel there is a less optimistic, external factors first review on SWJ:http://smallwarsjournal.com/jrnl/art...esolution-2051
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  3. #83
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default FP: Whose Side Is Yemen On?

    After watching the Yemen from afar this will not come as a great surprise. The article's sub-title is:
    Ali Abdullah Saleh's government colluded with al Qaeda and duped the West. Has anything changed since his ouster?
    It ends with:
    It's the highest-level leaders, who don't actually believe in the preachings of Ansar al-Sharia, but who manipulate them to remain in the government or bring a particular party to power.
    Link:http://www.foreignpolicy.com/article...n_on?page=full
    davidbfpo

  4. #84
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    Default Keep Calm and Carry On: A Plan for Yemen

    Keep Calm and Carry On: A Plan for Yemen

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  5. #85
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default AQAP: Leaders and their Networks

    Thanks to CWOT on Twitter for this AEI PPT, twelve slides and you know far more:
    This slide deck provides information on AQAP’s leaders, both current and former, and their networks.
    Link:http://www.criticalthreats.org/yemen...tember-27-2012

    Interesting comment by Leah Farrell on Twitter, which asked whether any analysts from way back in the early 1990's were still in government service who'd recognise the names and the networks.
    davidbfpo

  6. #86
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default Yemen: laboratory or roller coaster?

    An excellent article on this forlorn country, by Gregory Johnson's new book 'The Last Refuge: Yemen, al-Qaeda, and America's War in Arabia' and an excerpt is on FP Blog:http://www.foreignpolicy.com/article...emen?page=full

    A details a country that under President Saleh appeared to effortlessly pull the right levers with the USA and so he ends with:
    After more than a decade of on-again, off-again aid to Yemen, the al Qaeda branch in Yemen is stronger than it was on September 11, 2001. The money the United States has spent in Yemen has enriched dozens and the missiles it has fired into the country have killed hundreds -- and yet AQAP continues to grow.
    There is an excellent contrast on Clint Watts blog, with several linked articles by others:http://selectedwisdom.com/?p=817

    Has AQAP retreated under pressure from the state's security forces or the tribal militias? What have drone strikes done? More than stopping AQAP's use of vehicles.
    davidbfpo

  7. #87
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    Default Iranian Influence, Rising Asian Powers, and the Significance of Yemen as a Long-Term

    Iranian Influence, Rising Asian Powers, and the Significance of Yemen as a Long-Term U.S. Strategic Partner

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  8. #88
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default Strongly Recommended

    Clint Watts blogsite has a detailed, review of Gregory Johnson's new book 'The Last Refuge: Yemen, al-Qaeda, and America's War in Arabia':
    It is clearly the best book available on AQAP in Yemen..... the best-written book on al Qaeda I’ve read since Lawrence Wright’s The Looming Tower.
    A little more:
    Young Saudi foreign fighters have been the largest portions of recruits and leaders for years supplying one jihad after another. With the decline of Iraq, Saudi foreign fighters flowed into Yemen and today I imagine AQAP in Yemen is now competing with Syria for the collection of fresh recruits. Having read Greg’s book, I see the influx of Saudi foreign fighters, the failures of rehabilitation programs and repeated prison escapes as the driving factors in AQAP’s recent heights.
    Link:http://selectedwisdom.com/?p=823

    Link to book:http://www.amazon.com/The-Last-Refug.../dp/0393082423

    A book to add to my Christmas list!

    Two podcasts, short on PRI (6 mins):http://www.theworld.org/2012/11/yemen-al-qaeda/ and a longer discussion @ Brookings:http://www.brookings.edu/events/2012/11/13-yemen
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 11-13-2012 at 11:47 PM.
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  9. #89
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    Default Who & Where in Yemen

    Via Twitter a recommendation, even if not updated since June 2012:
    Interactive: Fractured Yemen
    Guide to the various factions involved in the ongoing conflict in the troubled Arab state.
    Link:http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/int...233575914.html
    davidbfpo

  10. #90
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    Default

    According to Gregory Johnsen, a journalist who has covered Yemen and Islamic insurgency in the Middle East extensively, al-Qaida's presence has tripled in size within Yemen over the past three years. Johnsen charts this growing influence on the country in his new book, The Last Refuge: Yemen, al-Qaeda, and America's War in Arabia.
    http://www.npr.org/2012/11/27/165936...da-and-the-u-s
    A scrimmage in a Border Station
    A canter down some dark defile
    Two thousand pounds of education
    Drops to a ten-rupee jezail


    http://i.imgur.com/IPT1uLH.jpg

  11. #91
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    Default The issues with on-the-ground intelligence gathering in Yemen

    Good catch AdamG.

    Gregory is rather direct in his observations. I draw attention to this, slightly edited portion:
    On the issues with on-the-ground intelligence gathering in Yemen

    "The U.S. soldiers, the U.S. operators that we have are trained particularly well. They are some of the best in the world at what it is that they do, but all of this is dependent upon the human intelligence on the ground and this is where the U.S. seems to do very bad both in the special forces in the shadowy part of the world where they are attempting to collect intelligence for targeting purposes, as well as on the political and on the State Department side where they're attempting to get out and speak with a lot of people and find out what's actually happening on the ground so that they can inform policymakers in Washington. ...

    "[T]he Achilles' heel for the United States in Yemen is that too often it just doesn't know what's taking place on the ground. The CIA doesn't know what's taking place, it doesn't know who is in a particular car, it doesn't know who is really a member of al-Qaida...... So both the CIA and policymakers in Washington tend to be operating more on assumptions than on hard facts... "
    davidbfpo

  12. #92
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default Drones help in the fight against AQAP?

    Twitter has been alive with pointers to events in Yemen, a re-organisation of the Yemeni security forces and of late a suspected US drone strike that was "off target" hence the FP headline:
    Anatomy of an Air Attack Gone Wrong: In rural Yemen, a botched attack on a terror suspect kills 12 civilians and destroys a community
    Link:http://www.foreignpolicy.com/article...dead?page=full and a CFR article:http://blogs.cfr.org/zenko/2012/12/2...-war-in-yemen/

    Moderator's Note

    This thread was till today called 'The End in Yemen? Thread for 2011-2012' and has now been re-named for 2013 as 'Yemen: all you want (2011-2013)'.
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 12-26-2012 at 11:26 PM.
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  13. #93
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    Default 'The Last Refuge' reviewed

    Gregory Johnsen's book 'The Last Refuge' has now been reviewed by Bruce Hoffman:
    In The Last Refuge, Johnsen provides a useful depiction of how that war began, even if he, regrettably, offers no prediction of how and when it will end. The book relates a compelling story about an implacable and formidable enemy. Although more descriptive than analytical....
    Bruce's review is a useful summary of how AQAP in the Yemen has got to where it is today.

    Link:http://nationalinterest.org/bookrevi...7892?page=show
    davidbfpo

  14. #94
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    Default Making Yemen even more complex

    A BBC report:
    A recent crackdown in Yemen against protesters calling for southern independence has inflamed tensions in the country, and divisions look set to deepen....
    Link:http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-21586344

    Now whether AQ can exploit this situation is a moot point, partly as working in a coalition is not their way:
    What will be worrying to the Americans and Saudis is that some young people - in anger and desperation - are turning to al-Qaeda in the region. The group's numbers have grown in the south since 2011.......That is not to say that all Southern Movement protesters are supporters of al-Qaeda. Herak is an umbrella group for different groups, including those who want more autonomy under a federal system, those who want independence and also some parts of Ansar al-Sharia, which wants a religious emirate. They are very disorganised and all that unites them is a shared animosity to the central government.
    (Added) A link to a Yemeni site giving more details:http://www.yemeniaty.com/2013/02/the...2007-2013.html
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 02-27-2013 at 06:59 PM. Reason: Add link
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    Default The Ansar of Yemen: The Huthis and al-Qaeda

    The Ansar of Yemen: The Huthis and al-Qaeda

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  16. #96
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default The United States’ War on Yemen: Drone Attacks

    I am sure events have happened in the Yemen since the last post, in February 2013, but we have all been distracted. Or is it "more of the same"?

    I have posted on the drones thread a link to a Swiss / Yemeni NGO report for the UN Rapporteur on Human Rights & CT - on drones in the Yemen; it is unusual in gathering eyewitness testimony and providing local contexts:http://en.alkarama.org/documents/ALK...3_Final_EN.pdf
    davidbfpo

  17. #97
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    Default Small update and a map

    A short article in The Economist (free registration req'd) on the situation in Marib Province, where there are - diminishing - oil and gas resources and an interesting passage:
    For sure, it is undisputed that fighters loyal to al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), which the Obama administration has marked down as a direct threat to the United States, hide in the province. But local tribes have not given them an eager welcome. Rather, AQAP fighters have exploited the security vacuum in areas where tribal structures have broken down and people are too weak to drive them out.
    Link:http://www.economist.com/news/middle...e_for_al_qaeda

    Of note is a small map showing where the drone strikes have hit. I was struck by their absence from the eastern province, which borders Oman and a broad swathe of the western, coastal provinces.
    davidbfpo

  18. #98
    Council Member Dayuhan's Avatar
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    Interesting article on water and qat in Yemen...

    http://www.foreignaffairs.com/articl...5YWhvby5jb20S1

    In a little over a decade, Sana’a, Yemen, may become the world’s first capital to run out of water. Failed governance and environmental mismanagement share some of the blame for drying up the city. But there is also a more surprising culprit: a national addiction to qat, a narcotic that is incredibly water-intensive to cultivate...
    “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary”

    H.L. Mencken

  19. #99
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default Yemeni people on drones creating enemies

    An intrepid BBC lady journalist, Yalda Hakim reports from southern Yemen, where she asks is the use of drones creating as many enemies as they are killing? Hat tip to Gregory Johnsen via Twitter.

    Podcast (13 minutes):http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-23606812

    In which many Yemeni's giving their answer, ordinary people and the Foreign Minister, whose answer is:
    I've heard this argument, there might be some truth to it ... but no alternative.
    There is a main thread on the Yemen, into which this will be merged:http://council.smallwarsjournal.com/...ad.php?t=12784
    davidbfpo

  20. #100
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default We have not gone away, thanks for your help

    A short review article 'Yemen al Qaida group appears to think globally, act locally', a month after the predicted massive attack:http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2013/09/0...#storylink=cpy
    davidbfpo

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