Speaking today on Meet the Press, CENTCOM commander General David Petraeus lauded the efforts against al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, saying that significant gains had been made “with the obvious exception of Yemen.”
Al-Qaeda’s Yemeni presence has taken on growing significance in the past two months, since they were linked to the failed Christmas underbomber attack in Detroit.
The organization in Yemen is actually an off-shoot of the parent organization, calling itself “al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula” (AQAP). Other groups, such as the Northern African “al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb” (AQIM) operated as distinct organizations before gaining the al-Qaeda “brand name,” and other groups in sympathy of them, including the Jund Ansar Allah group in Gaza, appear to be angling for similar “franchises.”
But according to Gen. Petraeus, the key to fighting al-Qaeda is to accept that they are a “network” and that it will take a “network” of conflicts to but any serious pressure on them.
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