Tuesday, December 27, 2011
In an eerie reminder of the events of 1979 when the US allowed the Shah of Iran to enter the US for cancer treatment despite misgivings regarding the consequences, the US has decided to allow the President of Yemen, Ali Abdullah Saleh, to enter the US for medical treatment for injuries arising out of a bombing earlier this year. The US is concerned that allowing President Saleh to enter the US will anger those who want him held accountable for the deaths of protesters. The US government has stated certain conditions, including an itinerary and the requirement that President Saleh not bring a large entourage. The US hopes that its move will help smooth the way for the elections in Yemen scheduled for February rather than inflaming the opposition as it did in Iran in 1979. Only time will tell.