US Drone Strikes Kill at Least Nine in Central Yemen

Slain All Called 'Suspects,' But What They're Suspected of Isn't Clear

US drone strikes have destroyed a pair of cars in the Bayda Province, killing at least nine people within. The slain, as with anyone who gets killed in US drone strikes, is being labeled a “suspect.” But what are they suspected of?

Locals can’t seem to decide on that. Initial reports, which put the figure at seven killed, claimed everyone within was a suspected member of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP). That appears to have been totally abandoned within hours, however.

US Central Command later issued a statement saying that everyone killed was a suspected member of ISIS. They offered no identities of any of the slain, however, and it’s rare enough for them to even offer a statement on such killings.

This did, however, underscore just how little intelligence the “local officials” who usually are the only source to identify them as “suspects” really have, as they offered their usual rubber stamp of the strike, while being totally incorrect about the faction they weren’t even suspecting them of.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of