Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh, a longtime U.S. ally, blamed the U.S. today for the unrest in his nation:
...Saleh delivered a fiery speech Tuesday blaming Israel and the United States for "destabilizing the Arab world," saying the anti-government protests in his capital were being "run by the White House."
Speaking to students and professors at Sana University, Saleh's accusations mark a departure for the president, a longtime ally of the United States in the war against Al Qaeda of the Arabian Peninsula and the recipient of hundreds of millions of dollars in U.S. military aid in recent years.
"Every day we hear a statement from [President] Obama saying, 'Egypt you can't do this, Tunisia don't do that,' " Saleh said. "What do you have to do with Egypt? Or with Oman? Are you president of the United States or president of the world?"
So one of the most pro-American leaders in the Middle East -- one we really don't want to fall -- is now playing the anti-American card in order to shore himself up. He alleges, improbably, that our spectator-in-chief to the current upheaval is really the mastermind behind it all.
The question is not so much whether Saleh actually believes this, as whether it has any chance of working. The 2011 Days of Rage are overturning much of the conventional wisdom about Arabs and Muslims. Now we'll see whether the typical anti-American, anti-Zionist scaremongering can continue to distract people from their real problems.