Six days after returning to Yemen from medical treatment in Saudi Arabia, President Ali Abdullah Saleh spoke on Thursday with Aryn Baker of Time magazine and Sudarsan Raghavan of The Washington Post.
Beyond the standard rhetoric --- Saleh has authorised his Vice President to conduct dialogue with the opposition, even though that opposition is linked to Al Qa'eda, note two things.
First, any talk of negotiation is limited by Saleh's insistence that his main opponents, General Ali Mohsen al-Ahmar and tribal leader Sheikh Sadegh al-Ahmar, cannot not have any influence: "[The initiative] says to remove all the elements causing tensions. Because if we transfer power and they are there, this will mean that we have given in to a coup."
And second, Saleh is playing up the image of his "alliance" with the US --- note how often he refers to co-operation with American intelligence.