This may be the case in Tunisia, Egypt, and Libya – if belatedly. In Yemen – not so far. But President Obama’s administration still has an opportunity to support the people of Yemen in their demands for Saleh’s resignation and for reform. Serious, concerted American and Western diplomatic pressure could be brought to bear in Sanaa, Yemen’s capital city and the heart of the protests. It is time for Yemen’s president to know the US wants him to relinquish power to a civilian transitional government.
Sheila Carapico is a professor of political science and international studies at The University of Richmond and currently a visiting professor at the American University in Cairo. She is the author of “Civil Society in Yemen” and the forthcoming “Political Aid: Democracy Promotion and the Paradoxes of Empowerment in the Arab Word.” She is also a contributing editor to the Middle East Report.