Assistant Professor of Political Science Stacy Philbrick-Yadav was interviewed Tuesday, Nov. 2, on the BBC World Service radio program, “Have Your Say,” discussing foreign aid to Yemen and whether more aid is the answer to ending radicalism.
Philbrick Yadav, when asked if she agreed with another panelist that radicalism stems largely from domestic grievances, said she believes that both domestic and international grievances are at play, but she’d “place more emphasis on the domestic.” Specifically, she pointed out that there is little discussion of non-radical, unarmed political opposition groups and that there are “common threads” in the grievances of armed and unarmed groups that need to be addressed.
She also explained that the issue of aid to Yemen requires a delicate balance. Amid concerns over corruption and the suppression of political opponents, it is tempting to bypass the government, but this is neither possible nor entirely wise. Philbrick Yadav said the key is identifying mid-level technocrats in key ministries who would be more reliable in getting the aid where it was truly needed, such as to “infrastructure development, particularly to the water issue.” When asked to define the water issue, she explained, “The country is rapidly running out of potable water.” Yemen, according to another guest, may be the first country on Earth to run out of potable water.
Philbrick Yadav received a bachelor’s degree in Anthropology and Middle Eastern studies from Smith College and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Pennsylvania. She is the author of several recent journal articles on political opposition in Yemen and Lebanon, and is completing a book on the subject of Islamist parliamentary opposition in the two countries. In 2008, Philibrick Yadav was a visiting researcher at the Harvard Academy for International and Area Studies. Before coming to HWS, she taught at Mount Holyoke College and the University of Pennsylvania, and lived and worked in Egypt, Lebanon and Yemen from 2003-2006, returning on a number of times since then to continue her research.
Listen to this episode of “World, Have Your Say” online.