Yemen: embattled prez blames Israeli subversion (of course)

As thousands marched in Yemen’s capital Sanaa in a massive anti-regime rally March 1, President Ali Abdullah Saleh blamed the US and Israel for the wave of popular revolution now sweeping the Arab world. “The events from Tunisia to Oman are a storm orchestrated from Tel Aviv and and under Washington’s supervision,” said Saleh, whose supporters staged their own counter-demonstration at the central Tahrir Square. “Every day we hear a statement by Obama… Egypt don’t do this, Tunisia don’t do that… What does Obama have to do with Oman, what does he have to do with Egypt? You are the US president.” He added that the protesters are “led from outside” and are in the pay of “Zionists.” (AFP, March 2)

It should be superfluous to call out the multiple ironies here. Far from supporting the Arab revolutions, the Israelis are clearly terrified that dictatorships long domesticated by Washington are now being destabilized by a popular upsurge. As Mubarak was overthrown in Egypt, a mob of panicked Jews in Jerusalem even attacked and killed a young Palestinian man, while chanting “death to Arabs!” In Libya, Moammar Qaddafi has meanwhile blamed the rising tide of revolution on al-Qaeda! Such contradictions have not kept some stateside observers from weaving fantasies akin to Saleh’s.

Saleh was forced to retract his wackiness—by the overlords in Washington that underwrite his regime! The White House issued a statement just hours after Saleh mouthed off stating that the dictator had called President Obama‘s anti-terrorism advisor John Brennan to apologize like a good boy. “President Saleh called assistant to the president John Brennan this morning to convey his regret for misunderstandings related to his public remarks that Israel and the United States have engaged in destabilizing activities in Arab countries,” the statement euphemistically read. (Middle East Online, March 2)

See our last posts on Yemen and the new Arab revolutions.

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