SANA’A – Due to its role in the war on terror, Yemen has been prominent in the news. Weekly World News provides a brief history of the country for all our readers.
Yemen has come up in the news a great deal since the failed Christmas Day airline bombing. It has been estimated that almost half of the inmates at Guantanamo Bay are from Yemen. But what other secrets does this country hold? How did it get this way? And where is it exactly? In a random sampling 9.8 out of every 10 Americans could not find Yemen on a map. 8 out of 10 had never heard of the country before last week. Here is a brief collection of everything You need to know about that mysterious country: Yemen.
– Yemen did not exist until 1752, when one day the entire landmass rose out of the sea. Its creation is believed to be linked to a genie, and a goat herder’s wish to move out of his parents house. To this day a magic lamp appears on the countries coat of arms.
– For hundreds of years in order to enter Yemen, you had to answer three riddles told by an ogre. The ogre retired in 1974 and now the border is maintained by the Yemeni Office of Immigration.
– In the Victorian Era, Yemen was advertised as an exotic getaway for wealthy Europeans. Only one couple ever came. They left after two nights and went to Egypt instead.
– Colonial ownership of Yemen was passed around European heads of state during a card game in 1899. Queen Victoria lost the colony to the Ottoman Empire on a bluff with a pair of 4s. Earlier in the evening Yemen had been traded for a pair of earrings.
– In 1918 Yemen seceded from the Ottoman Empire. This was a bloodless revolution as the Ottomans had forgotten Yemen existed. Before anyone could look for it on a map their empire collapsed.
– Heralding back to its glory days as a stop on the spice trade, Yemen is now the world’s chief exporter of capers. It is also where 80% of the worlds candy corn is manufactured.
– Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the failed Christmas Day bomber, has become known for hiding explosive materials in the lining of his underwear. However in Yemen this is a common way for men to carry valuables.