Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Bloody Struggle among Comrades in Aden | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
Select Page
Media ID: 55366704

April 20, 2015: People queue to fill containers with water amid an acute shortage of clean drinking water in Sana’a. Mohamed al-Sayaghi/Reuters

Washington- CIA archive declassified documents on People’s Democratic Republic of Yemen, previously known as South Yemen in the seventies and eighties of the past century. Any researcher specialized in Yemeni affairs will come to realize that this region was almost shut in front of the U.S. intelligence to an extent that the agency entrusted with spying over the world failed to figure out what happened in the bloody Massacre on the morning of Jan. 13 .

CIA Version of the South Incidents

On Feb. 4 1980, a memorandum consisting of three pages was sent from one party to another in the CIA. Most of the parties opposing the regime escaped, were executed or imprisoned. Yet, according to the memo, communication remained between regime members and exiled comrades in the north, Egypt and Saudi Arabia.

The First Coup

In June 1969, the most radical wing of National Liberation Front (NLF) conducted the first coup that ousted the moderate leadership. In 1970, procedures were taken to diminish the tribal identity and prevent residents in the six provinces from using their tribal nicknames.

The memorandum described the seventies of the past century as a phase that witnessed a conflict over power between two eminent leaders in the country: Salem Rabih Ali and Abdul Fattah Ismail who took over power after the second coup in June 1978 when Salem was assassinated and many of his followers fled to the north.

Military Arrogance

Another CIA report tackled the rule of Ali Nasir Muhammad and the conflicts which introduced the massacre of 1986. Conflicts originated from the fact that Ali Nasir moved some of his rivals to positions that seemed important but were actually not.

Soviet Power

Moscow is unwilling to fall into the trap of Yemeni political conflicts, revealed the report. It did not want to risk its position in the country through siding with one party over the other. Direct intervention in political conflicts in Aden is unnecessary because Moscow has the ability to affect the policy of South Yemen through calls with the government – the soviet power in the Yemeni Socialist Party and the Yemeni government is huge.

January 13 Massacre

A report was issued on Jan. 14, one day after the massacre of Jan. 13 in Aden, however information it was blatantly insufficient.The report focused on the return of Abdul Fattah Ismail from Moscow shortly before the coup to prove that Moscow stood behind the coup. But later on, what happened appeared to be a massacre that targeted four leaders, not a coup.