Deliberalization in Jordan the roles of Islamists and U.S.-EU assistance in stalled democratization
Hammerstein, Ralf P.
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Despite some political openings in Jordan during the 1980s, the democratization process is presently stalled. What explains the lack of continuous democratization in Jordan while democratic transitions in many other countries around the world have taken place? This study seeks to understand the reasons behind stalled democratization in Jordan by analyzing three variables: the nature of the opposition movement; the role of domestic and international events in shaping opposition-regime interactions; and the role of U.S.-European Union (EU) assistance to Jordan. The major finding of this study is that democratization in Jordan has stalled due to the regime's policy of preventing political opportunities to maintain the status quo backed by the U.S. and the EU. Political inclusion of the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) will bode well for Jordan's democratic progress. The MB's strategic behavior has withstood an Islamist radicalization in light of repression and unpopular western policy. Nevertheless, neither the U.S. nor the EU pushed for more liberalization, which enables the MB to gain political access. The U.S. and the EU opted for a realist approach, focusing on security in Jordan. This thesis proposes a rethinking of assistance to Jordan based on a burden sharing between the U.S. and the EU.
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