I found the response quite sophisticated and honest. To me this shows a growing maturity of the organization, which should be a cause for concern for many. This is not some shallow organization that is only interested in blowing things up - there is real thought here, which has the potential to be attractive to more than just those one often assumes would be attracted to al-Qaeda. I've told many people in the past, and I still believe it today: AQAP is the most representative organization in Yemen. This is not good. And combine this with what I'm reading as increasingly sophisticated arguments and responses to setbacks and challenges and the future does not look bright.
I was also intrigued by the statement by the editor apologizing that he couldn't fit all the articles in this month (even though he ran some old classics). I think this tells us a number of things, but none of which I have time to enumerate at the moment.