Tag: Jordan

US sends forces to Jordan

By LOLITA C. BALDOR and PAULINE JELINEK Enlarge PhotoAssociated Press/Virginia Mayo – United States Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta gestures while speaking during a media conference after a meeting of NATO Defense Ministers at NATO headquarters in Brussels …more on Wednesday, Oct. 10, 2012. NATO defense ministers gathered in Belgium Wednesday to begin deliberating the next phase of the Afghanistan war and to hear how military commanders plan to tamp down the insider attacks that have killed or injured 130 allied forces. (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo) less Related ContentEnlarge GalleryA view shows the wreckage of a bus after a bomb exploded at al- Zablatani area, in … BRUSSELS (AP) — The United States has sent military troops to the Jordan-Syria border to bolster that country’s military capabilities in the event that violence escalates along its border with Syria, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said Wednesday.

Speaking at a NATO conference of defense ministers in Brussels, Panetta said the U.S. has been working with Jordan to monitor chemical and biological weapons sites in Syria and also to help Jordan deal with refugees pouring over the border from Syria. The troops are also building a headquarters for themselves.

But the revelation of U.S. military personnel so close to the 19-month-old Syrian conflict suggests an escalation in the U.S. military involvement in the conflict, even as Washington pushes back on any suggestion of a direct intervention in Syria.

A late-blooming Arab Spring in Jordan?

By ILENE PRUSHER Muslim Brotherhood, opposition groups, call for massive rally in Amman to demand reform and boycott upcoming elections. Photo: Muhammad Hamed / Reuters The Arab Spring has blossomed – and sometimes wilted – in nearly every country in the region, aside from Jordan.

Now, with large demonstrations planned for Friday in Amman – which organizers say will be the biggest the Hashemite Kingdom has seen in years – some question how long Jordan can remain immune from the demands for change that have swept through the region, sparking uprisings and unseating dictatorships.

Jordan is a relatively small, stable country with a measure of freedom and a popular monarchy. But the conflation of new pressures on the desert kingdom – an influx of Syrian refugees, an economic crisis exacerbated by the region’s recent instability, and the ascent to power of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt – are adding up to a potentially combustible atmosphere that many analysts say should not be underestimated.

Jordan on the brink: Muslim Brothers mobilize for King Abdullah’s overthrow

Jordanian riot policeJordan’s Muslim Brotherhood has given King Abdullah II notice that he has until October to bow to their demand to transform the Hashemite Kingdom into a constitutional monarchy or face Arab Spring street pressure for his abdication.
debkafile’s Middle East sources report that Israeli and Saudi intelligence watchers are becoming increasingly concerned about the approaching climax of the conflict in Amman between Islamists and the throne .

For Israel, an upheaval in Jordan bodes the tightening of the Islamist noose around its borders – Egypt and Libya to the south and Syria to the north, with unpredictable consequences with regard to Jordan’s Palestinian population.
Saudi Arabia, already threatened by Iranian aggression, fears the oil kingdom may be next in line if its northern neighbor is crushed under the marching feet of the “Arab Spring.”