All Waq al-Waq Articles

Yemen, the Middle East, and the World Beyond

  • Brian O'Neill on Submergence

    Editor's Note: I recently read and subsequently tweeted about Submergence, the new novel by J.M. Ledgard.  Then I asked one of the smartest people I know - Brian O'Neill - if he would review the book for Waq...

  • The Last Refuge Book Trailer

    This week The Last Refuge: Yemen, al-Qaeda and the Battle for Arabia was released in the UK. For those wanting to get a sense of the book, I urge you to watch this short (1:41) book trailer, which you can view...

  • Does the US really try to Capture?

    On Thursday, John Brennan, President Obama's nominee to be the new director of the CIA, went before the Senate Intelligence Committee to answer questions. I watched all three and-a-half hours of the discussion...

  • 'Abd al-Rauf al-Dhahab and Bad Intel

    On Christmas Eve, Sudarsan Raghavan of the Washington Post wrote a detailed article about a September air strike in which the US attempted to kill 'Abd al-Rauf al-Dhahab, whom it believes to be a regional al-Qaeda...

  • Of Threats and Bounties

    On December 23 - the same day the US carried out an apparent drone strike in the al-Baydha governorate of Yemen, apparently targeting 'Abd al-Rauf al-Dhahab - AQAP released a 43 minute video. The video, which...

  • Sowing the Wind: Three years of strikes in Yemen

    Three years ago, on December 17, 2009, the Obama administration launched its first strike on what it believed to be an AQAP training camp in southern Yemen.  Unfortunately, what the Obama administration...

  • Why Did the US kill 'Adnan al-Qadhi?

    US officials continue to maintain as they have publicly for some time that in Yemen the US is only targeting the top 10-15 leaders of AQAP, whom it believes are actively plotting against the US and US interests in...

  • A Breakdown in Security

    A few weeks ago I wrote a piece about security in Sanaa and my own sense of unease during my last trip to Yemen.  That piece drew several comments both here on the blog and in person, where a number of people...

  • Guest Post: "After the Drone"

    Editor's Note: Today I'm thrilled to have a guest post by Adam Baron, an excellent journalist, who is working and writing from Yemen.  Today, he wrote a must-read story on his trip to see the aftermath of the...

  • The Yemen Model

    Today I published an op-ed in the NY Times, arguing that the "Yemen model" approach to counterterrorism is deeply flawed.  I also suggest a way forward for the Obama administration in selecting a new CIA...

  • The Jihadis of Yemen

    In the latest issue of New York Review of Books, Robert Worth reviews The Last Refuge along with Edmund Hull's book, High Value Target. Worth opens like this: Yemen is an ancient country on the southern heel...

  • Ibrahim Asiri, Rock Center and a nerd dream fulfilled

    I encourage Waq al-waq's readers to tune in to Rock Center with Brian Williams this evening at 10 pm EST for a segment on Ibrahim Asiri - who I wrote about here - and AQAP, in which I'll be talking about the...

  • Last Refuge Excerpt: The Bomber and His Brother

    This weekend the Toronto Star published an excerpt from The Last Refuge entitled: "The Bomber and His Brother," which looks at Ibrahim and Abdullah Asiri. The piece opens: A decade ago, in the months after...

  • Reports, Reviews, and inevitable, transparent self-promotion

    This is the type of post I'm not a big fan of writing, and you probably aren't a big fan of reading.  But, I'm told I'm supposed to do things like this, so, here it goes .... I appeared on NPR's Weekend Edition...

  • Guest Post: Second Term Politics and Yemen

    Editor's note: The below is a guest post by Waq al-waq co-founder Brian O'Neill. (I want to thank Greg for inviting me to post, and urge any of you who haven’t to buy- don’t rent, you freeloaders!- his book.  ...

  • The Last Refuge Reviewed

    Earlier today Bruce Riedel, writing for the Daily Beast, posted the first review of The Last Refuge.  His review opens like this: Obama will have to face the growing menace of Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula...

  • Sanaa Notebook: al-Qaeda and Electricity

    On Tuesday, October 2 the lights in Sanaa went out.*  The power cut in the Yemeni capital wasn’t particularly surprising.  Yemen has been suffering rolling blackouts for years; a problem that only grew worse...

  • 'Adnan al-Qadhi and the Day After

    Earlier today an apparent US drone strike targeted and killed 'Adnan al-Qadhi in the area of Sanhan, just south of Sanaa. I say apparent drone strike, because while there is no confirmation from the US - as is...

  • The Yemen Nightmare Scenario

    There are a lot of nightmare scenarios when it comes to the Middle East.  Some of these are already visible on the horizon as the New York Times outlines in this article about national security challenges...

  • Event List

    I will do my level best not to turn this site into a constant stream of book promos and the like in my transparent attempt to sell copies - I'll try. But for those who are interested in book news there are...

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