Al-Qaeda Seizes Town in Teetering Yemen

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According to Yemeni officials and the state-controlled press, Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula has seized the city of Jaar and declared an “Islamic Emirate” in Abyan Province. This is certainly a frightening development that raises concerns about the future of the Yemeni uprising, but there is more to the story than meets the eye. There are strong indications that President Saleh is using — and has used — the terrorist group to bolster his tenuous grip on power, claiming that the country faces peril without him.

Although President Saleh has been relatively cooperative with the U.S. in fighting terrorism, he has also used Islamic extremists to his own advantage. Lately, he has warned of the rise of Al-Qaeda should he leave office, causing one writer to dub him, “The President Who Cried ‘Al-Qaeda!’” For example, his press secretary has said that “Al-Qaeda is making use of the loose security situation caused by the protests” and “is encouraged by the obstinate position of the opposition over a peaceful transfer of power.”

The recent advances made by Al-Qaeda in Yemen fit Saleh’s narrative that his opponents are helping the terrorist group, and that the West must support him. Fox News was told by a Yemeni official about the seizing of Jaar, and Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula has declared an “Islamic Emirate” over Abyan Province. It was ruled that women could not go outside except for in an emergency, and in that case, must have identification and a male chaperone. The regime immediately blamed Al-Qaeda for an explosion at an ammunition factory that killed at least 150 people, saying the group looted it and sparked the blast.

Abdul Ghani al-Iryani, a top Yemeni analyst, says that Saleh’s elite U.S.-trained counterterrorism units in the area did not battle the advancing Al-Qaeda forces, showing that the territory was handed over to the group without resistance. “It is ridiculous to think that these units could not have held off an ill-equipped Al-Qaeda advance. If Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula was strong enough to take control of an entire governorate, they would have done so much sooner,” he said. It raises the possibility that the Yemeni government wanted Al-Qaeda to rear its head for political purposes.

The leader of the Al-Qaeda offensive is a man named Khalid Abdul Nabi, who led the Abyan Aden Islamic Army that has long worked closely with Saleh’s government and underwent the terrorist “rehabilitation” program. His group participated in the fight against the Houthi rebels, who challenged Saleh from 2004 to 2010. The Jawa Report says that it was his group that announced through a captured radio station that an “Islamic Emirate” was created, not Al-Qaeda. Another commander involved in these operations is Sami Dhayan, another jihadist with close ties to the regime.

The Joint Meetings Parties, an umbrella group of opposition parties, says that Saleh’s government is using Al-Qaeda as a political tool and bears responsibility for the explosion at the ammunition factory. A major tribal leader named Sheikh Hamid al-Ahmar, who recently turned on Saleh and is a supporter of Islah, the Muslim Brotherhood affiliate in Yemen, agrees. He says that Saleh has never been fully committed to eradicating Al-Qaeda and that a new government could destroy the “nuisance” in months with enough resources. Of course, Islah has an Islamist agenda and therefore poses its own problem for the West, but the opposition as a whole is accusing Saleh of being inconsistent and untrustworthy when it comes to fighting terrorism.

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  • Raed SAif

    Alqaeda is just a scarecrow to get funds from USA ,Europeans and Gulf countries and this farce is one of the plots of yemeni president in order to clinch power.

  • http://jewishdefense.org A. J. Weberman

    This is a confusing story. Salah is an ally and should not be abandoned as Obama is planning to do. If an Islamist A-Q Government arises in one of these dictatorships you are going to see state sponsored terrorism.

    • ObamaYoMoma

      States can sponsor all the terrorism they want, but if we didn’t have millions of Muhammadans already living in this country with thousands of mosques and madrassas, they couldn’t hit us. Indeed, the only reason they can hit us today is because we have millions of Muhammadans living in our country, if we had zero Muhammadans living in this country, on the other had, there would be zero terrorist attacks.

      Moreover, the reason they haven’t hit us again since 9/11 isn’t because Bush doubled the size of the federal government ostensibly to protect the homeland but in reality to create a false sense of security so that we can continue accommodating mass Muhammadan immigration with all of its excess baggage. They haven’t hit us again because if they hit us too much and too often the American citizens will get wise and demand that Muhammadan immigration be banned and reversed.

      Muhammadans can never hope to conquer the West via terrorism because they are far and away too backwards and weak. However, through stealth and deceptive non-violent jihad, specifically via demographic conquest, they can conquer the West.

      As a matter of fact, Muhammadans don’t immigrate to the West to assimilate and integrate but instead to eventually subjugate and dominate. Indeed, if you look at every place in the West where mass Muhammadan immigration has taken place, it is obvious that the majority of Muhammadans have refused to assimilate and integrate and have formed Muhammadan no-go zones ruled by sharia as parallel societies and in direct contravention to the laws of the states in which they reside.

  • Fred Dawes

    Al Qaeda has been in yemen for 20 years so this is News? what you should be asking is how much political power is Al Qaeda wheeling in Yemen and how much is obama helping Al Qaeda?
    We know that the CIA Boys and others had some dealing with our KID Bin Laden in the 1980′s and manybe into the 1990′s?

  • http://www.chick.com Raymond

    Let's see if i got this right!!!

    If you cross the north korean border Illegally you get 12 years hard labor.

    If you cross the iranian border Illegally you are detained indefinitely.

    If you cross the afghan border Illegally, you get shot.

    If you cross the saudi arabian border Illegally you will be jailed.

    If you cross the chinese border Illegally you may never be heard from again.

    If you cross the venezuelan border Illegally you will be branded a spy and your fate will be sealed.

    If you cross the cuban border illegally you will be thrown into political prison to rot.

    If you cross the U.S. Border illegally you get:

    A job, a drivers license,
    Social security card, welfare,
    Food stamps, credit cards,
    Subsidized rent or a loan to buy a house,
    Free education, free health care,
    A lobbyist in washington billions of dollars worth of public documents printed in your language
    The right to carry your country's flag while you
    Protest that you don't get enough respect
    And, in many instances, you can vote.

    I just wanted to make sure i had a firm grasp on the situation !!!

  • ObamaYoMoma

    I think we have become way too obsessed with AQ and with terrorism for our own good. The stealth and deceptive non-violent jihad that takes place for the most part below the level of the public’s scrutiny presents a far greater threat to our freedom and well being than the violent variety that we erroneously mislabel as terrorism. For instance, AQ couldn’t perpetrate terrorist attacks inside America if there weren’t already millions of Muhammadans and thousands of mosques and madrassas already present in America to provide them cover.

    How did they get here in the first place? They got here via the stealth and deceptive non-violent means of jihad that Robert Spencer has called demographic conquest. Indeed, demographic conquest presents a far greater threat to our freedom and well being than a bunch of terrorists playing jihad in failed Islamic states.

    Personally, I could care less if Afghanistan or Yemen becomes terrorist sanctuaries because if we were honest about Islam, we’d have to admit that the entire Islamic world is a de facto terrorist factory and sanctuary. Furthermore, without millions of Muhammadans already living here in the West, there isn’t a damn thing they could do to harm us in our homeland. Sure they could hit us abroad, but they can do that now anyway.

    Does anyone really believe that the 9/11 terrorist attacks would have been possible if millions of Muhammadans and thousands of mosques and madrassas weren’t already present in America to provide the 9/11 terrorists, really jihadis, cover?

    In any event, the last thing we should be doing is wasting our young American’s lives chasing hydra-headed terrorists in far away Islamic countries while trying to win the hearts and minds of Muhammadans who are obligated, per the texts and tenets of Islam, to hate our kafir infidel unbeliever guts no matter what. If we must deploy our military at all, then lets do something practical like targeting the source of the money that funds it, and if we want to protect the homeland from Islamic terrorist attacks, let’s ban and reverse Muhammadan immigration, which really is demographic conquest, a form of stealth and deceptive non-violent jihad, instead of growing the government to give us a false sense of security so that we can continue accommodating mass Muhammadan immigration with all of its excess baggage. Growing the government is never the solution for anything much less protecting the homeland from Islamic terrorist attacks.

    I don’t care if we triple the size of the federal government to protect the homeland from Islamic terrorist attacks, as long as we have millions of Muhammadans living in our country and within our midst, they can hit us at will. They haven’t hit us again since 9/11 because Bush doubled the size of the federal government to give us a false sense of security or because the Obama administration is diligent in stopping terrorist attacks, they haven’t hit us again because if they hit us too often and too much the public will get wise and demand that Muhammadan immigration, really demographic conquest, be banned and reverse, and if we take that step to ban and reverse Muhammadan immigration, other countries will also soon follow suit.