Defense Secretary Ash Carter has warned that Al Qaeda is on the rise in Yemen following turmoil caused by Houthi rebels' takeover from the pro-Western government last fall.

"AQAP (Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula) ... has seized the opportunity of the disorder there and the collapse of the central government," Carter said at a press conference in Japan today. "You see them making gains on the ground there as they try to take territory, seize territory and these battle lines."

Lt. Col. Ralph Peters (Ret.) said on "America's Newsroom" that President Obama has been so singularly obsessed with signing a nuclear deal with Iran that he wouldn't stand up to Iran in any of the other countries where they are engaged, such as Yemen.

"Shia Iran backed the Shia Houthis," Peters explained. "They overthrew the U.S.-backed, predominantly Sunni government. And now the Houthis, largely unopposed on the ground, are rampaging through the country while it's a split country."

"Yemenis are the hillbillies of the Middle East and hillbillies are tough," Peters said, adding that many Sunni tribes will be forced into an uneasy alliance with the expanding Al Qaeda.

Peters said the whole situation is complicated beyond anything the Obama administration can handle, especially considering the administration's fixation on a nuke deal with Iran.

"Al Qaeda is growing in strength. The Islamic State is moving in. And Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula is the most vicious, virulent, anti-American franchise in Al Qaeda."

Watch the video from "America's Newsroom" above.

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