Arcana Intellego

Yemen division 2011-10-23

Yemen division 2011-10-23 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

By Katherine Zimmerman   March 19, 2012

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Introduction

American strategy against al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) in Yemen relies on local Yemeni forces to defeat terrorists and the militias that support them.[1] The challenge has historically been finding and eliminating AQAP leaders, since the group has held relatively isolated safe havens until recently. The advent of the Arab Spring and the subsequent contraction of the Yemeni state, however, allowed AQAP and a nascent insurgent arm, Ansar al Sharia, to expand their sanctuary in Yemen dramatically. They have even threatened Aden, Yemen’s second city, advanced toward Sana’a, and fought Yemen’s military to a draw. American assistance programs aimed at helping Yemen build and maintain counter-terrorism forces will not suffice in the face of a real and growing al Qaeda-affiliated insurgency.

Yemen’s military capabilities enhanced through American security assistance programs…

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