DRONE WATCH: How Drones Help Al Qaeda

By Duane Shank 06-14-2012 | Series:

Ibrahim Mothana, an activist, writer and community worker from Yemen, writes that the anger and despair resulting from civilian casualties of drone strikes are causing Yemenis to join radical militants:

"Anti-Americanism is far less prevalent in Yemen than in Pakistan. But rather than winning the hearts and minds of Yemeni civilians, America is alienating them by killing their relatives and friends. Indeed, the drone program is leading to the Talibanization of vast tribal areas and the radicalization of people who could otherwise be America’s allies in the fight against terrorism in Yemen. … Yemeni tribes are generally quite pragmatic and are by no means a default option for radical religious groups seeking a safe haven. However, the increasing civilian toll of drone strikes is turning the apathy of tribal factions into anger. The strikes have created an opportunity for terrorist groups like Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula and Ansar al-Sharia to recruit fighters from tribes who have suffered casualties."

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