Earlier today, President Obama gave a speech outlining US policy toward a changed Middle East. It was his first comprehensive response to the Arab Spring. He said the US would dole out fresh aid to countries in the region that support democracy.
Writer Patrick Symmes had plans to check out Yemen’s nascent tourism industry when he visited in March. Instead he found himself in the midst of political upheaval and widespread demonstrations. Eventually he was kicked out of the country along with most other foreign reporters.
Protestors in Yemen have managed to politically isolate longtime U.S. ally President Ali Abullah Saleh. Yet Saleh still manages to hang on. One hundred demonstrators have died, including four on Tuesday. The U.S.
50 protestors shot in Yemen on Friday swung momentum firmly against President Ali Saleh. Longtime Saleh supporter General Ali Mohsen al-Ahmar and a slew of military officers said yesterday they now support the protestors.
Recent political unrest in North Africa has many rethinking U.S. foreign policy in the region. It remains to be seen, however, if changes in Egypt, Tunisia and elsewhere will produce a paradigm shift in the U.S. approach. We’ll hear a range of opinions.