Economic and demographic strains from the Syrian refugee crisis are impacting Jordan’s own domestic balance of power.
Embroiled in the spillover from the Syrian conflict, Jordan faces an enormous challenge. The country must focus on political and economic reforms, and needs outside help, too.
As Jordan strives to build a university system in line with its ambitious economic goals, tribal violence on campus remains a stumbling block.
The longer Washington puts forward half measures on the peace process, the more damage is done to its interests and reputation in the Arab world.
Economic reforms cannot succeed in isolation, but must go hand in hand with political transitions. They must benefit all segments of society and have buy-in from everyone.
Despite parliamentary elections, the way Jordan is governed is unsustainable in the post–Arab Awakening moment. Jordanians want the king to lead a genuine reform effort.
Emerging segments of the Jordanian opposition are becoming more vocal and boldly demanding change.
Refugees are pouring into neighboring countries to avoid the chaotic violence in Syria. Jordan is taking a large number of these refugees and straining its budget at a time of political instability.
If reform from above has any real chance to succeed in the Arab world, it would be in Jordan. But it will require a dramatic shift of priorities by a system that has been so far resilient to serious change.
As the standoff over Jordan’s new electoral law continues, what is at stake?