First US soldier killed on Trump watch–in Yemen

Here’s crack Pentagon reporter Nancy Youssef’s take on the death of an American commando in a raid in Yemen. It was an airstrike that ended in what she calls a “hard landing,” and few other details are available. The raid targeted al-Qaida in Yemen.

This is the key:

So far, the Trump administration has been particularly aggressive on the al-Qaeda threat in Yemen. Within hours of the start of the Trump presidency, the US launched three air strikes, also in Bayda province. At least two of those strikes targeted a top AQAP commander, Abu Anis al-Abi, who was killed in the strikes, the US military has said.

The previous administration went after AQAP with airstrikes and raids, too, but those diminished with the escalation of the civil war in Yemen. AQAP is considered the most active branch of the terrorist group that bought down the Twin Towers in 2001, and the vacuum left by the civil war has made it easier for AQAP to operate in Yemen.

Look for more US raids in Yemen, though we’re not likely to hear much about them unless there are American casualties.

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