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Digital Subscriptions > Newsweek International > 24 February 2017 > GUNS AND MOTHERS


In Yemen, starvation and a bloody civil war are leading some women to join Al-Qaeda


THE FIRST counterterrorism operation authorized by President Donald Trump quickly went awry. In late January, Navy SEAL Team 6 and United Arab Emirates special forces attacked Al-Qaeda insurgents in Yemen, but the militants spotted the approaching Americans and an hourlong firefight ensued. One SEAL died and three others were injured, and Yemeni officials claim that between 13 and 16 civilians were killed—including at least eight women and children.

Those numbers are still being verified, but the dead reportedly included the 8-year-old daughter of Anwar al-Awlaki, the U.S.-born former top operative of Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP). (Al-Awlaki, and later his teenage son, was killed by American drone strikes in 2011.) The girl’s photo quickly circulated online, sparking outrage over what many—the Trump administration excluded—consider a hasty and poorly organized U.S. raid.

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THE WAR ON ALZHEIMER'S This aggressive attempt to prevent Alzheimer’s rather than treating it is the most exciting new development in decades, as well as a radical departure for researchers and the pharmaceutical industry. Traditionally, drug companies have tested their therapies on patients who already have memory loss, trouble thinking and other signs of dementia. It’s been a losing tactic: More than ninety nine percent of all Alzheimer’s drugs have failed tests in the clinic, and the few that have made it to the market only ameliorate some symptoms. No single medicine has been shown to slow the relentless progression of the disease. However this new approach, even partial success an appreciable slowing of brain degeneration could have a big impact, says Dr. Reisa Sperling, a neurologist who directs the Center for Alzheimer’s Researc.