One of the most remarkable features of the contemporary Yemeni political formula has been its capacity to deal with the various Islamist ideal-types through integration and cooptation rather than repression. Muslim Brothers, Salafists, violent “jihadi” fringes, Sufis, and Zaydi revivalists have all at some point collaborated with the state to a certain extent. Since the 1970s, such an equilibrium has proved rather functional, as it has reduced the level of political violence, allowed the participation of most, and maintained government stability. Yet due to internal developments and external pressures after September 11, this system has increasingly been placed in jeopardy with still unknown consequences.
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