The European Commission on Human Rights has ruled that it is acceptable for the Turkish state to discriminate against hijab-wearing Muslim women who under Turkish law cannot enter official government buildings or universities. The Turkish Attaturkian cult state deems that to be educated you must have no remnants of Islam. This has resulted in hundreds of thousands of young Muslim women having to flee the country to pursue their college educations and millions more who couldn’t afford to do so being denied their college-education. The so-called liberal and open-minded Europeans have ruled that anti-Muslim (and in general anti-religious discrimination) is acceptable in the EU version of human rights where all things of all sorts of manners are tolerated as long as you are not Muslim. In the brief supporting the hijab-ban the EU court issued a ruling that read more like an anti-Muslim political rant than a legal ruling.
Like the hijab-ban in France rather than force integrating Muslim women into French or secular Turkish society this will further ghettoize these women and deny them access to the economic mainstream of the society. Instead of creating more educated women; these measures benefit the few secular-elites and harm the great many. In Turkey this also acts to distort the political dialogue as the best and brightest of religious Turkish women are forbidden from participating in the political process because of the hijab-ban.
The American media is giddy about the anti-terror protests in Jordan. Now, I am not in Jordan, but I know how many (if not most) Arab protests work, especially those that are pro-government. What tends to happen is that the government will give most government employees the day off of work and those who are off work will be required to attend the demonstration or rally and to bring their families. That is why in any Arab country, within 24 hors, you can produce a rally with hundreds of thousands of people. When I lived in Palestine people who hated Fattah and Yasser Arafat would get a knock on the door to attend a rally the next day and they would show up with big photos of Arafat and a Palestinian flag with their families. So I wouldn’t take too much stock in what you are seeing today in Jordan. Don’t get me wrong, I am sure that many Jordanians are very upset about the deaths of so many Jordanians and the negative effect this will have on the Jordanian economy, all I am saying is this looks like a state-produced rally.
Looking to the future we should keep in mind that Jordan is a majority-Palestinian nation. In the past the government has had a rocky relationship with its Palestinians and has outright been at war with Palestinians at times. Since Jordan signed the peace treaty with Israel, and the two nations have developed strong economic ties, many Jordanians have received tremendous economic benefit from this while the bulk of the Palestinian community in Jordan are greatly angered by the relationship. Non-Palestinian Jordanians dominate the military and the security services and priority number one is always to keep a mindful eye on the Palestinians and the Islamist organizations.
Another factor is that currently in Jordan there are a large number of Iraqi refugees which include both Sunni and Shia. It has been documented that in the past many Iraqis living in Jordan have been involved in the insurgency. Couple this with the fact that the Jordanian government has close ties to the US, and that many American private contractors and mercenaries are staying in Jordanian hotels and basing their operations in Amman then we have the recipe for turmoil. Since the bombing of the hotels many Jordanians are now blaming Iraqis and are now calling for revenge against those Iraqis living in Jordan. This could get ugly if Jordan erupts in nationalist violence.
Many critics of the War on Iraq warned the war would spread across the Iraqi border into the greater Arab world and engulf the entire region in turmoil; spreading to Jordan today and where else tomorrow?