May 25, 2013 |
Four years ago, as a new al-Qaeda affiliate in Yemen was proving itself a potent adversary, the Obama administration made plans to attack it with airstrikes just as the United States had been doing to the terrorist network's core in Pakistan. But this time, the White House decided there would be a key difference: The strikes in Yemen would be carried out by the U.S. military, not the CIA. Two years later, in mid-2011, a mysterious construction project began to emerge in the Saudi desert, an elongated compound with a ribbon of concrete running parallel to the ridgelines of the surrounding dunes.
April 10, 2013
EAST ASIA Japan-Taiwan deal prompts ire in China China expressed deep concern Wednesday after Japan and Taiwan signed a fishing agreement for the seas around a disputed group of East China Sea islands that have been at the center of an increasingly hostile standoff between Beijing and Tokyo. "We hope that Japan earnestly abides by its promises on the Taiwan issue and acts cautiously and appropriately," Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said. Japan recognizes Taiwan as belonging to China, but it maintains close economic and cultural ties with Taiwan.
April 6, 2013 |
The Obama administration is still struggling with how to make good on the president's promise to ensure that its counterterrorism programs, including drone strikes, are "even more transparent to the American people and to the world. " After President Obama's pledge in his State of the Union address in mid-February, Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. told a Senate hearing in early March that the president would publicly address the issue "in a relatively short period of time.
April 1, 2013 |
Danya Greenfield is deputy director of the Atlantic Council's Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East . David J. Kramer is president of Freedom House . Most news out of the Middle East these days is dispiriting: the devastating civil war in Syria , the autocratic nature of Muslim Brotherhood rule in Egypt , continued militia activity in Libya, a coalition collapse in Tunisia. Less discussed, and surprisingly positive, is the political situation in Yemen. The United States has played a significant role in Yemen's transition, which ushered out former president Ali Abdullah Saleh, in exchange for immunity, and inaugurated a unity government and consensus president that are overseeing a national dialogue launched last month.
February 13, 2013 |
In the northwest enclaves of this capital, a renegade general's forces control the streets. In the southern reaches, Yemen's former president exerts influence from his mansion. And in a neighborhood nestled in the middle, a powerful tribal family wields authority on the ground and in political circles. A year after President Ali Abdullah Saleh stepped down in a deal brokered by the United States and Yemen's Arab neighbors, the country's three most influential families continue to cast a large shadow over the political transition.
December 10, 2012 |
Despite the indignities of serving in a conflict-mired country and living in a decaying hotel, U.S. diplomats posted to Yemen have had one major perk to look forward to: Starwood points. Lots and lots of them, entitling them to dozens of free nights at Sheraton, W Hotels and Westin properties worldwide. Alas, that's about to end, our colleague Ernesto Londoño reports. The hotel chain is expected to yank the Sheraton logo from the heavily fortified property — home to the diplos since political unrest broke out in Sanaa last year — by Jan. 1. "They want their name off," lamented a diplomat, who estimates he has racked up enough points to never again have to pay for a hotel stay.
November 1, 2012 |
IT'S BEEN 10 years since the first strike by an armed U.S. drone killed an al-Qaeda leader and five associates in Yemen. Since then, according to unofficial counts, there have been more than 400 "targeted killing" drone attacks in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia — countries where the United States is not fighting a conventional war. About 3,000 people have been killed, including scores — maybe hundreds — of civilians. And though the United States is winding down its military mission in Afghanistan, the Obama administration, as The Post's Greg Miller reported last week, "expects to continue adding names to kill or capture lists for years.
September 29, 2012 |
When President Obama tried to simultaneously disavow the anti-Muslim YouTube video that sparked widespread anti-American protests and defend freedom of speech at the United Nations last week , he ran headlong into the new governing principles of old allies like Egypt and Yemen. The presidents of Egypt and Yemen denounced the protesters' violence in speeches to the U.N. General Assembly. But they were equally fervent in defending the religious outrage behind them and challenging Obama's fulsome view of free speech.
September 10, 2012 |
Jaar, Yemen — Abdul Latif al-Sayid knows a lot about the al-Qaeda militants lurking in this tense southern town. He knows their tribes, knows their tactics. He knows because he used to be one of them. That's why they are trying to kill him. So Sayid, the leader of a tribal militia fighting the Islamist extremists, moves from house to house every few days to throw off their informants. He travels only with trusted bodyguards and sleeps with a Kalashnikov rifle by his side. "Now, the war against al-Qaeda is more dangerous than before," said Sayid, a thin and bearded 31-year-old who has survived six attempts on his life, including an ambush over the weekend that killed one of his fighters.
September 10, 2012 |
The deputy leader of al-Qaeda's affiliate in Yemen was killed in an airstrike Monday, according to the Yemeni government, five years after he was released from the U.S. prison in Guantanamo Bay in a failed attempt at rehabilitation. Said Ali al-Shihri, a Saudi national and the deputy emir of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, and six other people were killed in a military operation in the southern Yemeni province of Hadramaut, the Yemeni Defense Ministry said in a brief statement.