Steven A. Cook

From the Potomac to the Euphrates

Cook examines developments in the Middle East and their resonance in Washington.

Posts by Category

Showing posts for "Jordan"

Weekend Reading: Sudanese Refugees in Jordan, Egyptian Insults, and Living Without Sabra Hummus

by Steven A. Cook
A Palestinian vendor reads a newspaper with the death of former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi on the front page in Jerusalem's Old City (Amir Cohen/Courtesy Reuters). A Palestinian vendor reads a newspaper with the death of former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi on the front page in Jerusalem's Old City (Amir Cohen/Courtesy Reuters).

IRIN reports on Jordan’s neglected refugees.

Mada Masr presents “Lexicon of a revolution’s insults,” which looks at new terms and labels invented after the Egyptian uprising of January 25. Read more »

Weekend Reading: Controversy in Jordan, A New Year in Iran, and Religion in Syria

by Steven A. Cook
Tourists stroll at the Grand Bazaar, which was built during the Ottoman-era, in Istanbul (Murad Sezer/Courtesy Reuters). Tourists stroll at the Grand Bazaar, which was built during the Ottoman-era, in Istanbul (Murad Sezer/Courtesy Reuters).

The Jordanian perspective on Jordan’s current political situation and King Abdullah’s recent commentary in the Atlantic. Read more »

Jordan Second

by Steven A. Cook
Jordan's King Abdullah II Bin Al Hussein (Ray Stubblebine/Courtesy Reuters). Jordan's King Abdullah II Bin Al Hussein (Ray Stubblebine/Courtesy Reuters).

Lost in all the commentary in President Obama’s visit to Israel is the fact that he will also visit Jordan.  The country is often derisively referred to as the “Hashemite Kingdom of Boredom,” but it has been anything but lately.  To be sure, Jeffrey Goldberg’s extraordinary interview with King Abdullah II has caused quite a stir, but that is not the only reason why Jordan is interesting.  In January the Jordanians held elections, there have been a spate of protests over food prices, strong criticism of the King from some of the monarchy’s heretofore strong tribal supporters, and Jordan is now host to more than half a million Syrian refugees.  The fact that Syria is in chaos, sectarian gangs rule Iraq, Egypt is in turmoil, and predictions of a 3rd Palestinian intifada abound places King Abdullah and his Kingdom in a more uncomfortable position than usual.  That said, I have been assured by people who know far more about Jordan than I that expectations of instability and threats to Hashemite rule are overblown—a function of a few boisterous activists and impressionable Western journalists. Read more »

Weekend Reading: Tunisian Shake, Jordan’s Price Hike, and Syria’s Rebel Leadership

by Steven A. Cook
Former theology student Mevlude Aydemir reads a book in the old city of Istanbul (Fatih Saribas/Courtesy Reuters). Former theology student Mevlude Aydemir reads a book in the old city of Istanbul (Fatih Saribas/Courtesy Reuters).

Haifa Zaaiter argues that the “Harlem Shake” craze that has hit Tunisia may end up disarming the Salafists of their most potent weapon: denouncement of apostasy.

The Impatient Bedouin reflects on the recent outburst of violence in Jordan’s parliament over the country’s decision to raise fuel prices last week. Read more »

Weekend Reading: Iraq’s Sects, Jordan’s Elections, and Bahrain’s Social Networks

by Steven A. Cook
A man reads the Koran at the Al-Masjid al-Nabawi, before the early morning prayer of Al-Fajr in the holy city of Medina (Amr Dalsh/Courtesy Reuters). A man reads the Koran at the Al-Masjid al-Nabawi, before the early morning prayer of Al-Fajr in the holy city of Medina (Amr Dalsh/Courtesy Reuters).

Wadah Khanfar discusses Iraq’s problem of increased sectarian tension, which threatens Iraq’s security and the security of the whole region.

Abdulilah, posting on AmmonNews, offers reflections on Jordan’s upcoming parliamentary elections, which will take place on January 23. Read more »

Weekend Reading: Turkish Justice, Great Expectations in Egypt, and Jordan’s Challenges

by Steven A. Cook
A man searches for a book in a second hand book market in Istanbul (Osman Orsal/Courtesy Reuters). A man searches for a book in a second hand book market in Istanbul (Osman Orsal/Courtesy Reuters).

Markar Esayan says that Turkey’s democracy can only be consolidated if criminals of the past are held accountable, including officers of the Turkish Armed Forces. Read more »

Weekend Reading: Kurdish Hunger Strikers, Jabari’s Assassination, and Jordan in Turmoil

by Steven A. Cook
Syrian Bedouin writer and journalist Lina Hawyan al-Hassan, reads a book at her home in Damascus (Khaled Al Hariri / Courtesy Reuters) Syrian Bedouin writer and journalist Lina Hawyan al-Hassan, reads a book at her home in Damascus (Khaled Al Hariri / Courtesy Reuters)

Jake Hess’ take on hunger striking Kurds.

Issandr el Amrani on Ahmed al Jabari’s assassination.

Katie Paul looks at the escalating crisis in Jordan.

Weekend Reading: Egypt’s Salafists, Jordan’s President, and Turkey’s Republic Day

by Steven A. Cook
A woman visits the Scientific Institute after it reopened after restoration works, in Cairo (Mohamed Abd El Ghany/Courtesy Reuters). A woman visits the Scientific Institute after it reopened after restoration works, in Cairo (Mohamed Abd El Ghany/Courtesy Reuters).

Ashraf El-Sherif provides insight into the two camps within Egyptian Salafism, both competing for legitimacy in Egypt’s new political landscape. Read more »

Weekend Reading: Snapshots of Protests in the Middle East

by Steven A. Cook
Protesters climb a fence at the U.S. embassy in Sanaa (Mohamed Al-Sayaghi/Courtesy Reuters). Protesters climb a fence at the U.S. embassy in Sanaa (Mohamed Al-Sayaghi/Courtesy Reuters).

Nafeesa Syeed provides a closer look at the ongoing protests at the U.S. embassy in Sana’a, Yemen.

Evan Hill offers an interesting analysis of the anti-American demonstrations sweeping the Arab world. Read more »

Weekend Reading: Egypt’s Past is Present, Libyan Islamists, and Jordanian Challenges

by Steven A. Cook
Kuwaiti citizen Abu Ail Walima reads a newspaper in downtown Kuwait City (Stephanie McGehee/Courtesy Reuters). Kuwaiti citizen Abu Ail Walima reads a newspaper in downtown Kuwait City (Stephanie McGehee/Courtesy Reuters).

Amin Shalabi wonders if history will repeat itself in the U.S.-Egypt relationship.

Alison Pargeter offers the deeper story on Islamism in Libya on Open Democracy. Read more »