On the Offensive

Senator: Let's Try Drones in Yemen

The chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Carl Levin (D-MI), said the United States should consider defeating Yemen’s al Qaeda presence with airstrikes, armed drones, and covert operations Wednesday. This marks a rare public admission that the U.S. is considering military action in the country, which has rejected the idea of accepting U.S. troops. Yemeni authorities fear America’s visible presence in their country could lead to civil clashes. After Levin’s three-day trip to Afghanistan and Pakistan, he told reporters: “We ought to consider a broad range of options in Yemen because of the broad-ranging threat of al Qaeda.” The success of the drone attacks in Pakistan prompted Levin to consider a similar approach in Yemen. Recently, the ACLU demanded the government disclose its basis for drone attacks, with one legal fellow saying the public has the right to know “that all efforts are made to minimize the loss of innocent lives.”