Yemen Politics, Breakfast Burrito Edition

by Patrick Appel

Joshua Foust contemplates Yemen's latest round of protests and Saleh's declaration that he won't run for relection. Foust asserts that while "some protesters in Sanaa have said they were inspired by the protests in Egypt and Tunisia, those two revolts did not inspire the protests anymore than my breakfast burrito did":

The latest round of protests probably had a number of causes behind them, one of which may have been the unrest in Tunisia and Egypt. At the same time, and quite unlike the protesters in Tunis and Cairo, Yemenis aren’t demanding revolution, but rather reform and peaceful transition of power. It is a totally different animal.

An  important point:

[I]n Yemen, there is a very regular pattern to protests, opposition and Saleh playing the crowds to stay in charge. In 2005, Saleh announced his intention not to seek reelection, only to stay on the ballot and win.