The Middle East is in the midst of considerable and unpredictable changes, but deeply patrimonial political systems do not change overnight and neither do the international and regional structures that have helped them to endure for so long. The informal rules that guide Yemeni society and its dysfunctional political settlement look set to endure, in spite of unprecedented protests. Entangled in a narrative of acute crisis and possible state failure, the country still relies on foreign assistance to prop up its ailing economy. Fearing the threat from al-Qaeda on Yemeni soil as well as the crisis of the Houthi insurgency and the southern secessionist movement, regional and Western powers have continued to bankroll the regime without taking significant steps to address the underlying causes of instability and threat. Drawing on research carried out on the ground in Yemen, this Adelphi examines the shadowy structures that govern political life and sustain a network of social elites predisposed against any far-reaching systemic reform. It looks behind the scenes at the regimes opaque internal politics, at its entrenched patronage system and at the rules of the game that will shape the behaviour of the post-Saleh rulers, to offer insights for how the West may better engage within that game
Yemen is in the grip of its most severe crisis in years. The struggle for power in the Arab world’s poorest but strategically vital nation has serious implications for the region and beyond. In this invaluable analysis, Helen Lackner uncovers the social and political conflicts that threaten the very survival of the state and its people. ‘A superb book written by an outstanding author whose knowledge of Yemen is unparalleled... an indispensable guide.’ Dr Noel Brehony CMG, former Chairman British-Yemeni Society; ‘An outstanding book that provides answers to all of the questions raised by Yemen’s many crises since 2011. Written with compassion and insight.’ Eugene Rogan, University of Oxford; ‘An eminently valuable account of Yemen’s modern history and current travails.’ Roger Owen, Harvard University
Through detailed exploration of events in Tunisia, Egypt, Bahrain, Libya, Syria and Yemen, Sean Burns here breaks down the concept of professionalism within the armed forces into its component parts and demonstrates how variation in military structures determines their behaviour. In so doing, and by emphasising historical context and drawing on a wide range of political science theory, Burns sheds fresh light onto the ways in which military structure affects the potential for democratic transition or the course of civil war. With this book he presented a wide-ranging study of the Middle East which provides key tools to understanding the opportunities for democratisation, both during the Arab Spring and beyond, and which is therefore essential reading for anyone working on the Middle East, popular uprisings and the politics of repression.
In the The Middle East, Sixteenth Edition, Ellen Lust brings important new coverage to this comprehensive, balanced, and superbly researched text. In clear prose, Lust and her outstanding contributors explain the landscape of this changing region by examining both regional trends and individual countries. The Sixteenth Edition adds a chapter on Sudan, and other country chapters have been streamlined and fully updated to reflect domestic, regional, and international changes of the past three years. This best-selling text offers a wealth of information to help readers not only comprehend more fully the world around them, but also recognize and formulate policies that can more successfully engage the vitally important Middle East.
This international relations study investigates the underlying causes of the Yemen crisis by analyzing the interactions of global, regional, and local actors. At all phases, GCC member states played a key role, from political negotiations amidst street protests in 2011 to formation of an international military coalition in 2015. Using a multi-actor model, the book shows that various actors, whether state or non-state, foreign or domestic, combined to create a disastrous armed conflict and humanitarian crisis. Yemen’s tragedy is often blamed on Saudi Arabia and its rivalry with Iran, which is usually defined in sectarian “Sunni-Shia” terms, yet the book presents a more complex picture of what happened due to involvement by many other foreign actors, such as the UAE, UN, UK, US, EU, Russia, China, Turkey, Oman, Qatar, and African states of the Red Sea and Horn of Africa.
Responding to a diplomatic stalemate and a catastrophic humanitarian crisis, Yemen’s civil actors work every day to build peace in fragmented local communities across the country. This book shows how their efforts relate to longstanding justice demands in Yemeni society, and details three decades of alternating elite indifference toward, or strategic engagement with, questions of justice. Exploring the transformative impact of the 2011 uprising and Yemenis’ substantive wrestling with questions of justice in the years that followed, leading Yemen scholar Stacey Philbrick Yadav shows how the transitional process was ultimately overtaken by war, and explains why features of the transitional framework nevertheless remain a central reference point for civil actors engaged in peacebuilding today. In the absence of a negotiated settlement, everyday peacebuilding has become a new site for justice work, as an arena in which civil actors enjoy agency and social recognition. Drawing on seventeen years of field research and interviews with civil actors, Yadav positions Yemen’s non-combatants not–or not only–as victims of conflict, but as political agents imagining and enacting the justice they wish to see.
Tribes and Politics in Yemen tells the story of the Houthi conflict in Sa'dah Province, Yemen, as seen through the eyes of the local tribes. In the West the Houthi conflict, which erupted in 2004, is often defined through the lenses of either the Iranian-Saudi proxy war or the Sunni-Shia divide. Yet, as experienced by locals, the Houthi conflict is much more deeply rooted in the recent history of Sa'dah Province. Its origins must be sought in the political, economic, social and sectarian transformations since the 1960s civil war and their repercussions on the local society, which is dominated by tribal norms. From the civil war to the Houthi conflict these transformations involve the same individuals, families and groups, and are driven by the same struggles over resources, prerogatives, and power. This book is based on years of anthropological fieldwork expertise both on the ground and through digital anthropological approaches. It offers a detailed account of the local complexities of the Houthi conflict and its historical background and underscores the absolute imperative of understanding the highly local, personal, and non-ideological nature of internal conflict in Yemen.
Alternative forms of government and statehood exist in the Middle East and North African regions. The chapters in this volume demonstrate this and explore the notion of power from a non-statist perspective, highlighting the limits of states and their governance. Using empirical evidence from Syria, Libya, Lebanon, Tunisia, Iraq, Yemen, and Mali, the authors explore non-standard cases where power may be retained by a state but must be shared with a number of local actors, resulting in limited statehood and hybrid governance, which leads to competition and sharing of symbolic and political power within a state. This book is intended to prompt a critical reflection on the meaning of governance. It will illuminate informal structures which deserve attention when studying governance and power dynamics within a state or a region. This book was originally published as a special issue of Small Wars & Insurgencies.
This collection of essays from international experts examines the economic interests of armed actors ranging from military businesses in Egypt, Turkey, Iran, Pakistan, Jordan, Sudan, and Yemen to retired military officers’ economic endeavors and the web of funding of non-state armed groups in Syria and Libya.
This book examines the connection between socio-politics and security in the Arab World. In an effort to understand the social and political developments that have been on-going in the Arab World since the 1990s, culminating in the Arab Spring, Krieg moves beyond liberal deterministic assumptions - most notably that the promotion of liberal values and democracy are the panacea for the structural problems of the region. Instead, this text advances the case that grievances related to individual security needs are at the heart of regional insecurity and instability. Looking towards the future, the author asserts that regimes can only be resilient if they are able to provide for individual security inclusively. When regimes fail to cater for public security, they might be replaced by alternative non-state security providers.
Yemen has faced continuing crises since 2010. The fighting and divisions have destroyed much of Yemen's physical, political and social infrastructure, undermining its tribal traditions and religious tolerance, and impoverishing the country. The outbreak of war in 2015 caused the world's worst humanitarian crisis. In this book, Yemeni and international experts assess what political arrangements are required to overcome fragmentation and discord in Yemen. They look to understand how people from all parts of the county can work together to build a new Yemen, one that will give a voice to its young population and provide a full role for women. The contributors argue that Yemen's major resource is its population, but that Yemenis need to be motivated and trained to give them the skills to rebuild the economy and to prepare for long-term challenges such as water shortages and climate change. The volume also discusses how the international community will need to absorb the lessons of the past to find better ways of creating the institutions, mechanisms and transparency with Yemenis that will enable the flow of vital assistance to where it is most needed. The book provides an up-to-date analysis to help governments and international agencies who will have to work with Yemen and its neighbours in the post conflict situation.