Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula

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Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) is a major terrorist organization whose intent is to push aspiring jihadists, who are more willing to use its gruesome tactics to advance their local ambitions. The government of Yemen continues to fight for the provinces occupied by AQAP. Areas such as, the Abyan and Shabwa provinces are partly or entirely out of the governments control. The information delivered in this paper is intended to enable a better understanding of the agenda behind AQAP while examining AQAP’s influence of regional and global importance specifically U.S. interests.

Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula is formerly known as Al Qaeda in Yemen (AQY) was established in 1998 after the disestablishment of the Islamic Jihad in Yemen (1990-1994) and the Army of Aden in Abyan (1994-1998). The bombing of the USS Cole and the French oil tanker M/V Limburg illustrated the beginning of a threat to U.S. interest in the region by AQY. Abu Ali al-Harithi was the leader of AQY and was killed in 2002 by a U.S. drone strike. The death of this criminalist leader hampered the operations by AQY and put them in disarray. Unfortunately, in 2006 twenty-three terrorist escaped from the prison in Sanaa, Yemen which marked a critical turning point for AQY. In 2008 an Al Qaeda franchise fled across the border into Yemen due to a crackdown by the Saudi government. This franchise united with AQY and in 2009 merged under the banner of AQAP. Currently members from the groups mentioned previously hold top leadership positions in AQAP (Masters, 2011).

Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula has a significant affect on the regional interest within Yemen. Since the reestablishment of Al Qaeda in 2009, AQAP has continued to pressure different provi...

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...US interest will always be affected as AQAP undermines our relevance in the region Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula is likely to continue its growth and reach on the world in order to continue jihad and push for all persons to be consumed under the Muslim faith.

Works Cited

Barfi, B. (2010). Yemen on the brink: The resurgence of al qaeda in yemen. New American Foundation, Retrieved from


Masters, J. (2011). Al-qaeda in the arabian peninsula (aqap). Council on Foreign Relations, Retrieved from

Smarick, K., & Miller, E. (2011, September). Background report: Al-qa'ida in the arabian peninsula (aqap), anwar al-awlaki, and samir khan. Retrieved from
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