Friday, January 23, 2015
Drones and Revolution in Yemen
Now Hadi's government has collapsed and it looks like Yemen may be partitioned between Al Qaeda and another group of rebels backed by Iran, called the Houthis. The Houthis are mainly Shiite, Al Qaeda and its allies mainly Sunni, and without any central government to hold the place together, who knows what may happen?
Behold the fruits of our drone foreign policy. Every missile we fired at Yemeni rebels has, in the end, only added to Yemen's misery. Whatever the government gained by having its enemies blown up was lost by the growing perception that Hadi was an American tool, and as he depended more and more on American backing he lost the support of Yemenis. When Houthi rebels took the capital and surrounded Hadi and his cabinet, nobody rose up to help them.
It is not yet certain that Yemen will descend even farther into chaos. Hadi's resignation seems to have been a political move aimed at forcing the Houthis who were holding his government hostage to ask him back, but it looks like they are simply going to let him go and organize a new government without him and his supporters. Who knows, they may succeed; maybe the Yemeni factions will all bond over hating the US and our drones, and so our cruel idiocy will make some positive contribution to the place after all.