“My daughters and I are safe. What happened is a massacre, a real massacre,” Arwa Othman, the Yemeni writer and activist, told me.
I called her on Friday after hearing of gunmen firing on a protest rally in Yemen’s capital, Sana’a, killing tens of protesters. The voices of ambulance sirens were clear and loud. They stood in stark contrast to the joyful and hopeful atmosphere of the sit-in camp three weeks ago, when Othman and I participated in a women’s rally.
Othman, who is in her forties, was drawn to the Yemeni youth movement just like other members of Yemeni urban civil society.… Seguir leyendo »
Is Yemen becoming a breeding ground for terrorists? The question has been posed with much urgency by media commentators after the Nigerian Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab claimed that al-Qaida operatives based in Yemen trained, armed and tasked him with blowing up a US flight.
Yet articulating the question in this form is hardly novel. The western intelligence community has already established that Yemen is indeed a breeding ground for terrorists, more precisely since the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The weakness of the Yemeni central government, its inability to penetrate the tribal areas, the mountainous Yemeni topography, in addition to the Yemeni leadership’s ambiguous position towards its local jihadists, all contribute to the country’s attractiveness to al-Qaida operatives.… Seguir leyendo »