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US: Great friend of Muslims world wide. More good news.(12 posts)

US: Great friend of Muslims world wide. More good news.Sintesi
Jul 15, 2002 11:16 AM
Can anyone say "Thank you?"

What a bunch of nice guys we are.

The Development Challenge
In addition to the pivotal role it plays in Middle East regional stability, combating terrorism, and serving as a model of reform, a critical domestic challenge this year is spreading the benefits of economic reform and growth more broadly within the society. The Jordanian economy is highly vulnerable to regional and global political and economic shocks. The closure of traditional markets and the effects of the September 11th terrorist acts in the United States have negatively affected Jordan's ability to overcome the many development challenges it faces.

The Government of Jordan (GOJ), led by King Abdullah II, has embarked on a program of far-reaching economic and social-sector reforms. A multi-faceted plan to accelerate the national social and economic transformation in Jordan is based on an aggressive growth budget over the next four years. This process is designed to maintain Jordan's macroeconomic stability and strengthen its credibility with the international financial community. USAID/Jordan is well positioned to assist in this ambitious undertaking and to support Jordan as a key ally and development partner through efforts in population and family health, water resources, and economic opportunities for Jordanians.

The population of Jordan is 5.1 million. This is over nine times the population in 1952 when the United States began providing economic assistance. While the total fertility rate has declined from 7.3 children per family in 1976 to 3.5 in 2001, the current natural rate of increase is 2.3%, with a total population growth rate of 2.8%. This will lead to a doubling of the population by about the year 2027. This high population growth rate places severe demands on Jordan's limited water resources and is a key factor in the current high rates of unemployment and under-employment.

Jordan is one of the ten most water-deprived countries on earth. Jordan needs to do whatever it can to use its water resources efficiently. Ninety percent of Jordan receives less than eight inches of rain annually. Of that, 90% is lost to evaporation. As a result of three years of drought, reservoirs which should contain 178 mcm of water contain only 37 mcm. Water is scarce in the entire region and will continue to be a critical issue for peace and economic development for decades to come.

In 2002, there will be 37,000 new entrants to the work force. With unemployment currently at 14.9% and rising since September 11th, and with "under-employment" adding perhaps another 5%, there will be few employment opportunities for these new entrants without faster economic growth and labor market reforms. In addition, the "safety valve" of employment in the Arabian Gulf is disappearing, placing a burden on the domestic economy. With 50.5% of Jordan's population currently under age 20, and almost 40% below the age of 15, the situation will only get worse.

The USAID Program
USAID will devote $150 million in ESF in FY 2002 to Jordan and is requesting $250 million in ESF in FY 2003. USAID's program focuses on three strategic objectives (SOs): Improved Water Resources Management; Improved Access to and Quality of Reproductive and Primary HealthCare; and Increased Economic Opportunities for Jordanians. At the higher funding level, USAID/Jordan does not plan to add any new strategic objectives. However, it will expand the scope of activities to include social sector issues related to education, population, and family health. Additionally, one Intermediate Result indicator each will be added to the water resources and economic opportunities objectives to track rural development and poverty statistics under these strategic objectives. USAID will work with the State Department and the Jordanians to put in place the appropriate mechanisms to program and manage the increased funding level.
if you say it loud enough maybe they'll agree with you - nmMJ
Jul 16, 2002 1:51 AM
Wer're after Jordan's immense natural resources. ; )Sintesi
Jul 16, 2002 5:01 AM
Something wrong about proclaiming the good that America does? It should be acknowledged in the spirit of fairness and justice.

Muslims in almost all ME countries are not allowed to protest their own corrupt governments, which tend to hoard and squander their resources, and deny them good schools, free press and self rule.

Essentially, the only thing they are allowed to protest and vent their anger on is the US and the west, in essence to keep them off the backs of their own brutal, corrupt governments. It's subterfuge and "it's the economy, stupid."
You know, scapegoating.

We were seen as Arab nations greatest friends in the west 30 years ago after they got rid of the Brits, who they really hated once upon a time for all their meddling. It is only after our steadfast friendship with Israel over this period of continuing Palestinian occupation that this relationship has soured. That and the continuing poverty in the face of all this immense wealth created from the oil trade.
Wer're after Jordan's immense natural resources. ; )MJ
Jul 16, 2002 5:29 AM
I agree - I think that the US (and lots of other western countries) pump money into a number of countries without credit

you're right the problem is that the government in many arab countries don't see eye to eye with the majority of the populace (Algeria is a fine example) - though it's not always because their despots (Algeria is a fine example again)

I think the only natural resource Jordan has is its proximity to Iraq which will be convenient for the upcoming war...

you're right too that participating in global wealth/economy is a fast track to a better safer world for all

but in the meantime most Arabs just don't see it that way (despite overhwleming evidence to the contrary) they see the US/the west as evil etc...
Wer're after Jordan's immense natural resources. ; )Sintesi
Jul 16, 2002 9:17 AM
"I think the only natural resource Jordan has is its proximity to Iraq which will be convenient for the upcoming war... "

Somehow I don't think this war in the making is going to come off unless a serious provocation emerges. BTW, didn't Jordan proclaim neutrality during the 91 war? Might be wrong.

"but in the meantime most Arabs just don't see it that way (despite overhwleming evidence to the contrary) they see the US/the west as evil etc..."

Without doubt. I think the States should be ramping up the humanitarian aid in these regions and making sure a big bright "Gift from USA sticker" is on every care package distributed. These people need to have an alternative conflicting choice in which to label us. Might mitigate some of the venomous hate.
Jordan is a great ally...TJeanloz
Jul 16, 2002 1:41 PM
King Abdullah is no stranger to the United States. His mother, Princess Muna (nee Antoinette Gardner) was a British citizen; and his beloved step-mother, Queen Noor (nee Lisa Halaby), was an American citizen. He went to private junior high school and high school in the United States, going on to Oxford, and Royal Military Acadamy Sandhurst. He was a commissioned officer in the British Army, serving in West Germany. He also studied foreign and middle eastern affairs at Georgetown University.

As a result, Jordan is a closer ally to the United States than they appear to be on paper. Abdullah has been widely influenced by the United States, and is mostly held back in policy-making by his country's poverty (they have practically no oil). He does not discount the generosity of the United States; but he doesn't necessarily agree with our official views regarding Israel. And I think it's fair to realize that he (and his country) have an entirely different point of reference on Israel than the United States, and their point of view is valid, even if some express it so violently.
shortsightednessMJ
Jul 17, 2002 12:19 AM
the papers here over the weekend detailed 'high level diplomatic negotiations' between the US and Jordan in respect to proposed/possible military action against Iraq - I can find the link if you want

I think the decision makers have all the provocation they need - no access to nuke/WMD programmes in Iraq - it's just a matter of kick starting the PR spin machine - assuming Bush/Cheney and Co don't go down in the corporate fraud scandals they're intimately associated with - subterfuge anyone?

I think Jordan was neutral in Gulf War I

while trade is a key to a better future so is aid (including all the international NGO's and UN) - the US/west can only ignore the rest of the world at their/our own peril - you can bomb the world to pieces but you can't bomb the world to peace
shortsightednessSintesi
Jul 17, 2002 4:55 AM
"I think the decision makers have all the provocation they need - no access to nuke/WMD programmes in Iraq - it's just a matter of kick starting the PR spin machine - assuming Bush/Cheney and Co don't go down in the corporate fraud scandals they're intimately associated with - subterfuge anyone? "

I think you're right about the "decision makers" and I think the American public is all for a fight with Iraq (provided it goes as smoothly as Desert Storm and and Afghanistan, i.e. low casualties, relative speed). But the climate is so volatile, the popular enmity is so great in that region that all Islamic allies (and most European allies) are completely against it, even tho privately they may tell the US another thing. Not to mention the delicacy of Israel and Palestine. Imagine if we invade and Hussein lobs a scud filled with nerve gas on Israel. Israel will probably not be convinced to sit on their heels and let us handle the fight for them again. Israel involved in the invasion of an Arab nation (no matter how justified) is a nightmare. I think the whole thing is a bad idea in the current climate.

But then again, we're pinched because of the WMD aspect. You know Tony Blair is suposed to be sitting on a dossier w/ "incontrovertible evidence" of the WMD program in Iraq but won't release it. Why do you think that is the case?


I don't wanna touch the Bush/Cheney cynical-use-of-war-to- obfuscate-their-own-political-troubles idea, but I will say even the appearance of such crass form of subterfuge would probably harden even my generous heart. It's not smart. Then again, politicians seem to get away with it so much maybe it is "smart."

"" the papers here over the weekend detailed 'high level diplomatic negotiations' between the US and Jordan in respect to proposed/possible military action against Iraq - I can find the link if you want" "

I saw a report on MSNBC where Jordan, at least publicly, is doing everything they can to convince their people nothing of the sort is going on, even opening all the military bases to the media to show there is no US presence. I really think they want absolutely nothing to do with this. Did you know that Iraq is their # 1 trading partner?
shortsightednessMJ
Jul 17, 2002 10:17 AM
if you were Bush (and deeply implicated in corporate malfeasance) would you want to pitch the idea of Gulf War II to your Euro-buddies or would you rather have your trusty lap dog Tony Blair?

Bush is widely regarded as a poor excuse for a leader in Euro-land (you know - the "you can tell he's lying because his mouth is moving saying stupid, offensive things" line of reasoning) and any sales pitch from him and his ilk will be turned down by Euros who don't have the capability/budget/ability/public support for projecting themselves abroad militarily (though I reckon the UK will send both their planes and a few ground troops for the US to run a now familiar theme of friendly fire target practice)

Britain has always been America's greatest diplomatic resource in Euro-land - I'd bet Blair's sitting on whatever for the right time - Bush can g-up middle America with his usual self-righteous corny bluster and lap dog Blair can smooth the pitch to the Euros (and anybody else who'll have him around for tea - remember Iran last Autumn?) en Francais etc.

Israel can be controlled if the US chooses (that's what so galling to most Arab allies and extremists alike)

Jordan is neck deep with the Iraqis - but after all it wasn't so long ago that we (collectively) were selling Iraq weapons - capitalism is an immoral fact of life...
This is strange...I agree with everything you wrote?!?..nmBikeViking
Jul 16, 2002 9:48 AM
This is strange...I agree with everything you wrote?!?..nmMJ
Jul 17, 2002 4:30 AM
it's time you started acknowledging I'm always right
I sure will...NOT!!! LoL nmBikeViking
Jul 17, 2002 12:02 PM