you are actually absolutely right my friend: while I was struggling to make it to work I found this thread:http://www.vectorlinux.com/forum2/index.php?topic=2082.0
and so I follow all the steps and I thought it was this bit:
that did the thing, because mine was blank, but actually my rc.local file contains this:
ifconfig ath0 down
ifconfig ath0 up
wpa_supplicant -dd -Dwext -iath0 -c/etc/wireless/wpa_supplicant.conf
Thus I am actually using the wext driver (see the nOOb I am, I didn't know the -D was to set the driver lol)
So I suppose I am in the same situation as you, but it works so yay (even though it seems a bit crooked in fact.