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Waq al-Waq Posts

Yemen, the Middle East, and the World Beyond

Waq al-Waq

Gone Fishin'

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almost 2 years ago

Postings at Waq al-waq will be suspended until some point in mid-July (depending on the fish and novels) at which point I will resume, what is for me, regular posting. 

Waq al-Waq

The Debate that Wasn't

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almost 2 years ago

In Yemen, al-Qaeda often makes mistakes that open the group up to criticism. Most of the time this chance goes begging as the Yemeni government, popular clerics and tribal shaykhs neglect to speak out in any sustained fashion against the terrorist group. I think this is a mistake. My record, I ...

Waq al-Waq

Yemen Readings

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almost 2 years ago

I wanted to highlight three different pieces on Yemen that have been published in the last couple of days, mostly because they are written by a trio of bright individuals who take a different view of Yemen than I do and that can be a helpful corrective against any biases I bring to bear on the ...

Waq al-Waq

Three Things to Read

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almost 2 years ago

Three interesting pieces on Yemen have hit the internet in the past couple of days, which people who follow Waq al-waq should definitely read. The first, and most important, is this interview that Qasim al-Raymi - AQAP's military commander - gave to a Yemeni journalist.  (The interview was ...

Waq al-Waq

The Ghalib al-Zayadi Problem

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almost 2 years ago

Over the past few years as I've thought about al-Qaeda, Yemen and US policy I have returned time and time again to what I have termed "the Ghalib al-Zayadi problem." Basically, this is the idea that just because someone in Yemen has a beard, carries a gun and talks about Islamic law doesn't mean ...

Waq al-Waq

Frontline: al-Qaeda in Yemen

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almost 2 years ago

Last night Frontline aired the film al-Qaeda in Yemen, which was reported by Ghaith Abdul-Ahad who writes for the Guardian and who, along with Declan Walsh when he was at the Guardian, used to be two of my favorite reporters to read on places I'd never been.  The film was spectacular and I would ...

Waq al-Waq

New Book: The Last Refuge

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almost 2 years ago

In perhaps this blog's worst kept secret, I have been writing a book. In fact, I started working on the book before Brian and I even started Waq al-waq.  Originally, the idea was the blog would serve as a sounding board for ideas I was playing with - that did not work out like I had planned. But ...

Waq al-Waq

Guest Post: Yemen and Foreign Aid

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almost 2 years ago

Today the Friends of Yemen met in Riyadh.  One of the key issues, as it often is at these meetings, is that of foreign aid. Several days ago a group of Yemeni students gathered to debate exactly the topic of Foreign Aid and whether it is causing more harm than good.  The organizer of that ...

Waq al-Waq

The Other Side of Yemen: A Must Read (Updated)

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almost 2 years ago

In the spring of 2000, when I first started studying Yemen as an undergraduate during a semester abroad at the American University of Cairo, I found myself seduced by Yemen's deep history and rich theology.  Later, when I was finally able to spend a significant amount of time in the country as a ...