Focus Group Middle East:


The kingdom of Jordan exists in a precarious space between the larger Arabic nations and Israel.  Destitute of natural resources and dependent on outside money, Jordan often serves as a conduit between Israel or the United States and other countries in the region such as Iraq or Syria.  Ruled for many years by King Hussein, Jordan did not escape the wars and political violence of the Middle East but neither was it subsumed by it.  King Hussein ruled in Jordan ever since 1952 when he assumed the throne at age 16 and was a stable and honored player on the Middle Eastern political scene, but he died last year and has since been replaced by his 37-year of son, King Abdullah.  This new king faces serious challenges to his country and is an integral part of the peace process.

Questions to keep in mind:  What are the origins of the national state of Jordan?  What ethnic groups live inside Jordan?  What ethnic group holds power?  From what group is the army composed?  What major traumas have occurred to Jordan since 1947?  How has King Hussein survived them?  What are the major problems that Jordan faces today?  Why does it play such a key role in the Middle Eastern peace process?


Start here and read everything at: Jordan at Yahoo!  Also check out all the links at Open Directory's Jordan section.  Get good basic Jordanian information at the CIA World Factbook.  And read your handout!  This is an excellent general link for Jordan!

A CNN interactive series about King Hussein: A photo gallery of Jordan's final farewell to its king, Key dates in King Hussein's Life, Crown Prince Abdullah: Heir to the throne, Jordan: Facts and figures, A look at King Hussein's reign.   Watch related videos of King Hussein and learn about the importance of his reign.  Know everything about this very important family in Jordanian political life!

Also read this interview with King Hussein before his death.  This is also a good general link on the recently deceased king.

February 8, 1999 -- His Father's Son Jordan's new leader, King Abdullah, has vowed to continue the policies of his father.

February 5, 1999 -- King Hussein Margaret Warner leads a discussion about King Hussein of Jordan and his 46-year reign.

October 3, 1996 -- King Hussein King Hussein of Jordan shares his views on the recent violence in the Middle East and emergency summit in Washington. While he once thought the peace process irreversible, the King now thinks last week's pitched battles between Israeli troops and Palestinian protesters could destroy the hope created by the 1993 signing of the Oslo agreements.

The Office of King Hussein of Jordan, Information on the Kingdom of Jordan