As mass uprising threatens the Saleh regime, a look at the covert U.S. war in Yemen

Amy Goodman interviews Jeremy Scahill.

The Obama administration has really escalated the covert war inside of Yemen and has dramatically increased the funding to Yemen’s military, particularly to its elite counterterrorism unit, which is trained by U.S. Special Operations Forces….

The fact is that the U.S. has been almost entirely silent in the face of Saleh’s forces gunning down their own citizens, which stands in stark contrast to the position that the U.S. has taken on some of the other regimes in the area….

What about the U.S. response to the situation in Libya?

The no-fly zone has always been a recipe for disaster. It was a disaster in Iraq, where it resulted in a strengthening of Saddam Hussein’s regime. The U.S. has bombed Gaddafi’s house. The U.S. is bombing targets that have no aerial value whatsoever. You know, I’m against the U.S. policy in Libya for tactical and strategic reasons. I think that it could end up backfiring in a tremendous way and keeping Gaddafi in power even longer.

And if the United States is going to start intervening in every failed rebellion or insurrection around the world, it’s going to be very, very busy. I think this was a reactionary policy with very little sight of an endgame….

I think this is a classic case of knee-jerk “we need to remain relevant in the world so we’re going to take military action,” while propping up ruthless dictators elsewhere that have conducted the same kinds of operations, or ignoring far worse humanitarian crises and far worse mass slaughter on the part of dictators around the world.