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Who's Next? Yemen

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  • Who's Next? Yemen

    One of the arguments over the invasion of Iraq was whether it would make the region more stable or less stable. Those favoring the invasion argued a peaceful and prosperous democracy would be an affirmative example for the region. Those opposed to it insisted that fighting against an occupying power would radicalized jihadists in the region and provide a training ground for insurgents. Not a problem, countered the advocates of invasion: there wouldn’t be any fighting. We would be welcomed as liberators.

    Remember? It’s hard to find a recent example of strategic calculation more disastrously wrong than that one. If that judgment as to the level of resistance to occupation was incorrect, was the prediction of regional stability flawed as well? The answer to that is Yemen.

    Yemen is a pretty screwed up place, but an uneasy truce between the government and Islamic insurgents has held for quite a few years. Now that truce is unraveling, in part because of the increasing number of militant insurgent veterans in the country returning from Iraq skills honed and convictions hardened by the fire of combat.

    Here’s a fight we need to be very circumspect about: jihadists on one side and a corrupt ineffective government on the other, in a country ready to split along ethnic and tribal fault lines. It’s a nightmare war ready to happen.

    Another nightmare war? I think we’re full up on those.

    Here’s a link to a good overview of the history of the conflict and the current situation.

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