Cohen, Political Parties in the West Bank Under the Jordanian Regime, 1949-1967

by Joel Beinin
published in MER115

Amnon Cohen, Political Parties in the West Bank Under the Jordanian Regime, 1949-1967 (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1982).

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Status-less in Cyber City

by Maisam Alahmed
published in MER275

When refugees from the Syrian war first began to stream into Jordan, the Jordanian Ministry of Interior registered the newcomers and placed them in the care of families, under the kafala system, mainly in the capital of Amman. The kafala or guardianship system has roots in Bedouin customs, but in modern times the term refers to how many Arab states handle migrant workers. A citizen or a company, known as a kafil, sponsors the migrant for a work visa and residency permit. At first this system accepted everyone, regardless of nationality or legal status—including 55 Palestinian families coming from Syria.

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Jordan's Longest War

by Pete Moore | published May 26, 2015 - 10:03am

More than any other Arab country, Jordan was linked to nearly every major twentieth-century war in the Middle East. War in the Arabian Peninsula propelled the kingdom’s future rulers, the Hashemites, to come to British-controlled Transjordan in the 1920s. The Palestinian Arab revolt in the 1930s and then World War II helped to solidify the nascent state east of the Jordan River. Jordan was an active combatant in the Arab-Israeli wars, which brought waves of Palestinian refugees and lasting change to Jordanian society. The country was rocked by a brief but bloody civil war in 1970 and belatedly entered the 1973 Arab-Israeli war as well.

Two Books on Jordan

by Mary C. Wilson
published in MER119

Avi Plascov, The Palestinian Refugees in Jordan, 1948-1957 (London: Frank Cass, 1981).

Peter Gubser, Jordan: Crossroads of Middle Eastern Events (Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 1983).

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Not Running on Empty: Democratic Activism Against Israeli Gas in Jordan

by Curtis Ryan | published April 16, 2015 - 9:24am

A grassroots movement has been growing in Jordan, aimed at putting a stop to a major gas deal between Israel and the Hashemite Kingdom. In the wake of the Israeli elections, which returned Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to power, this movement can be expected to get larger still.

One Society of Muslim Brothers in Jordan or Two?

by Curtis Ryan | published March 5, 2015 - 9:58am

Jordan’s government this week approved an application to make the Society of Muslim Brothers a licensed, local charity, paving the way for a break between the Jordanian branch of the Brothers and the regional organization based in Egypt. The move was resisted, however, not by the Jordanian government, but by the Brothers’ own leadership, the Shura Council. The Council rejected the decision and condemned what it viewed as government interference in the affairs of Jordan’s largest Islamist movement -- underscoring a deepening divide between the movement and the state, and also within the movement itself.

Trapped in Refuge

The Syrian Crisis in Jordan Worsens

by Christiane Fröhlich , Matthew R. Stevens | published March 2, 2015

The daily lives of Syrian refugees in Jordan have always been difficult, but until the winter of 2014-2015, they were defined more by concern about making ends meet than outright panic.

Letter from Jordan

Internal, External Forces Make Regime Vulnerable

by A Special Correspondent
published in MER84

In July 1979, the Union of Jordanian Engineers held a forum in Amman on the “Economic and Technical Consequences of the Egyptian-Israeli Peace Accord.” The participants expressed the fragile hope that the meeting would lead to similar activities in the future, for Amman is a city bare, not only of green grass, but also of political discussion and activity.

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Security and Resilience Among Syrian Refugees in Jordan

by Denis Sullivan , Sarah A. Tobin | published October 14, 2014

Imagine living in a refugee camp. For most, that phrase is enough to conjure images of makeshift tents, dusty pathways, queues for water and food, and above all, fear. Now imagine living in Zaatari refugee camp in a northern part of Jordan 7.5 miles from the Syrian border and Dar‘a region, sharing an area only about three square miles with 100,000 other refugees in one of the most densely populated “cities” in the Arab world, with near-constant shuffling and reshuffling of households, food and water distribution points, and other services, and refugees arriving and leaving all the time. Who, would you imagine, is responsible for keeping you and your family safe, fed and housed? Who will help you make sure your children can go to school, and do so safely?

Umm 'Abdallah

by Elizabeth Dickinson
published in MER272

There is a name whispered in opposition circles in Syria -- an insurance policy against what after three years of conflict seems inevitable. If you are injured very badly, there are two imperatives: Get to the Jordanian border. Then, get to Umm ‘Abdallah.

“She’s the one,” says Muhammad ‘Ali Shamboun, a limping young man from Dar‘a now living in Amman. He motions to the unimposing woman, about ten feet away, whose succor he has been awaiting for two years. “If she says, ‘Do this operation,’ it’s done.”

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