Yemeni Officials Admit al-Qaeda War Not Going Well

Yemen's 'Official' Story Increasingly Dubious

On January 3, the Yemeni government mocked the threat posed by al-Qaeda as “exaggerated,” in the wake of announcements that both the US and Britain intended to close their Yemeni embassies.

Two days later they claimed thousands of troops were fighting al-Qaeda and that the group was on the run. The US praised the move and reopened their embassy, giving the impression that Yemen had somehow successfully “tackled” a global threat in a matter of 48 hours.

Just a few days later, Yemen was fairly publicly offering to make a deal with al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, a curious move if the war was going as swimmingly as they had claimed.

Details of the “offer” are still a matter of dispute, as al-Qaeda claimed that Yemen had in fact tried to convince them to leave the country before in return for releasing several al-Qaeda detainees. Yemen mocked the deal, claiming the “al-Qaeda stooge” who reported it was just desperate. Still, it is clear a deal (of some sort) was offered.

Not only that, regional politicians in the regions where the fighting is going on are now coming out to admit that the war isn’t going well, and that if anything they are losing the fight against al-Qaeda, with government control become increasingly tenuous.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of