Moral Imperatives in the Middle East

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In his address to the nation on Monday, President Barack Obama explained the rationale behind sending US military troops to Libya. In describing the situation, the President reminded Americans that "If [America] waited one more day, Benghazi, a city nearly the size of Charlotte would suffer a massacre that would have reverberated across the region and stained the conscience of the world. It was not in our national interests to let that happen. I refused to let that happen." But what if it happens in other countries, like Yemen? On the same day that he delivered his prepared remarks, an explosion ripped through a crowd of looters at a munitions factory in Sanaa, Yemen. At least 78 were killed, scores more were injured. Yemen's President Abdullah Saleh has publicly warned that his nation could fall into civil war if he is forced to leave prematurely.  Does Saleh's insistence to remain in power, and the civil unrest it foments,  also  qualify as a situation worthy of U.S. military intervention? For the answer,  we speak to Gregory Johnsen,  Yemen Expert at Princeton University. He says that "if the U.S. were to go in militarily, the U.S. would be creating enemies where there are none." We also hear from Raja Althaibani, a Yemeni-American and student studying human rights and international development.