Jordan’s anti-government riots aimed ultimately at removing King Abdullah from power are so severe that the government has turned 10,000 of its soldiers into riot police.
Religious Freedom Coalition President and Founder William Murray said the ruthlessness of the rioting prompted the move.
“The king has given police uniforms to 10,000 soldiers to try to maintain order,” he said.
Those soldiers-turned-police are not the only ones guarding the king. Terrorism analyst and Act for America President Brigitte Gabriel said there are U.S. troops on the ground in Jordan.
“We have actually positioned troops in Jordan to protect King Abdullah,” she said. “We’ve said that the Americans in Jordan are just there in case something happens in Syria so we can be close.”
Gabriel also said the situation has grown more intense: “The reality is, we have placed troops in Jordan so we can protect the royal family in case of an uprising which we are now witnessing before our own eyes.”
Murray reported that aid workers with his organization in Jordan have come astonishingly close to the action.
“The riots in Jordan are about one mile from our warehouse,” he said. “The Muslim Brotherhood has cut all roads between Jordan’s cities.”
Gabriel, who is a native of Lebanon, said the violence is no surprise, and “the Muslim Brotherhood is rising in Jordan.”
She warned that the king’s position is in danger.
“King Abdullah is hanging by a thread,” she said. “He has 20 percent approval in the country. The Muslim Brotherhood sees this as their opportunity to rise up after what they saw happen in Egypt, Libya, Tunisia and now Syria.”
However, the king’s decline in approval is a recent development. As WND reported, as recently as October, the king remained popular.
International Christian Concern Middle East analyst Aidan Clay said most Jordanians support the king.
“The king remains fairly popular and the king is still a seasoned politician who may be able to offer concessions that the Muslim Brotherhood accepts,” he said. “However, it is also true that every Jordanian is fed up with the widespread corruption within the government.
“Moreover, the economy is quickly declining, unemployment is rising, and there is a great rift between the rich and poor. The MB is highlighting these widespread concerns in their pursuit of ‘democratic reform,’ which resonates with nearly all Jordanians – whether they are MB sympathizers or not.”
Clay said the cover for many of the “Arab Spring” movements was the call for democracy. The Muslim Brotherhood’s use of the “democracy” line, he said, could tip the balance in their favor.
“Of most concern is that the MB is among the primary groups calling for political reform,” he explained. “If that continues to be the case, then many Jordanians may decide to back the MB, whether or not they agree with the Muslim Brotherhood’s religious ideology. Free elections, ending corruption, higher wages, and other claims all sound great, no matter who’s leading the campaign – whether it’s the MB or liberals.
“Many Jordanians just want change and some are willing to join whatever movement promises political reform.”
Gabriel said the uprising in Jordan is the product of America’s previous actions in Egypt and Libya.
“We are seeing a reawakening of radical Islam all over the Middle East empowered by the weakening American perception throughout the Muslim world,” she explained, adding that another factor intensifying the protests is the perception that King Abdullah is a Western pawn.
“King Abdullah is perceived by the radicals as too secular and a puppet of Western powers. They loathe him also because of the peace treaty with Israel,” Gabriel said. “Most Jordanians are Palestinians who favor Hamas-style leadership instead of Abbas’ negotiating with Israel and trying to be a friend of America.”
She added that the rebels are learning from recent radical movements.
“They are learning that what produces results are powerful organizations like Hamas dedicated to jihad and bringing pride and strength back to the Palestinians through Islamic warfare instead of a mamby-pamby let’s sit together and have coffee while we talk about the problem in Abbas and King Abdullah style,” Gabriel said.
WND also reported that the momentum from the Arab Spring has prompted the radicals to shift their attention to Jordan.
Following successful campaigns in Egypt, Libya and other Middle East and North African nations, the Muslim Brotherhood now is trying to destabilize and possibly overthrow Jordan’s government, according to reports.
The Saudi-owned news channel Al-Arabiya, citing leaked files, reported the embattled regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and his allies have sought to destabilize neighboring Jordan by manipulating peaceful demonstrations there and turning them into deadly violence.
Jordan is the latest target in the gun sights of the Muslim Brotherhood and other radical jihadist elements. WND reported in December that the Arab Spring was a front for the expansion of jihadist regimes.
Center for Security Policy analyst Clare Lopez said those suggesting the world is seeing the rise of Shariah in that region are “obviously onto the reality of the disaster that’s unfolding in front of us in the Middle East.”
Lopez said the chain of events was a coordinated effort: “The so-called ‘Arab Spring,’ long planned and well-executed by jihadist forces, with deliberate and knowing assistance from the current national security leadership of the [U.S.], is nothing more than the implementation by Islamic powers of Phase 5 of the plan for global domination.”
Lopez referred to a document introduced as evidence in the 2008 Holy Land Foundation terror funding trial.
“Although, unquestionably, there were both naive and spontaneous elements to uprisings in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya,” Lopez said, “the actual course of those revolutions and especially now, their aftermaths, were and are being managed carefully and professionally by the Muslim Brotherhood and al-Qaida allies.”
Lopez said there is a traceable timeline leading to the present results in Tunisia and Egypt: “In July 2010, al-Qaida in the Arab Peninsula published its first issue of the online magazine, ‘Inspire.’ In it, al-Qaida explicitly called on the Muslim world – and the Muslim Brotherhood in particular – to rise up in jihad and turn the page ‘from Mecca to Medina.’”