Queen’s birthday

Today is the birthday of Jordan’s Queen Rania. One of the interesting facts about her from Wikipedia is that she once worked for Apple Computer. That might explain her YouTube channel. But as a teacher who has seen firsthand the type of corporal punishment used in Jordan’s public schools, what I most remember about her is her campaign against child abuse, a courageous stand indeed in that part of the world.

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Mapping Jordan

It looks like Jordan will soon have GPS navigation devices, if this article is any indication:

NAVTEQ, the leading global provider of digital map, traffic and location data for in-vehicle, portable, wireless and enterprise solutions has launched a navigable map of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan.

Offering full coverage stretching from the elegance of Amman in the north to the magnificent landscape of Wadi Rum and the coastal city of Aqaba in the South, the new map includes over 28,000 kilometres of Jordan’s expanding road network and, very importantly, over 13,000 of the Points of Interest (POIs) which are so key to navigation in this country.

With mail delivered to post office boxes, street addresses rarely used and most places of interest (such as government buildings, hotels and restaurants) in Jordanian cities and towns well known, directions are usually given based on nearby landmarks. With its usual attention to local detail, NAVTEQ has therefore included a particularly wide range of POIs which can be used as destinations. The commonly used 1st to 8th Circle names for the central jabal junctions have also been retained but NAVTEQ has also added the alternative official names where they are available.

Here is a screenshot (clickable) of the Jordan map from their website:
amman map

As you can see, my search for “third circle amman jordan” gave me locations in Texas and Hong Kong–not even close–although it recognized my Chicago IP and gave me a good map for a Chicago address I tried. The map though is more fun.  The controls are similar to Google Earth but maybe a little easier to use. The screenshot shows the Roman theater as a semicircle on the right, Jebel Hussein in the center , and the First Circle to the left. The meandering gray line above that is Wadi Sacra, where the weekly Friday intifada demonstrations used to march from the King Hussein mosque until they were moved to the Professional Buildings on Fourth Circle. Above Wadi Sacra is Jebel al-Weibdeh, the traffic circle at the top being the crest of the hill above Luzmila hospital.

It will be interesting to see if this spurs any improvements in the Jordanian mail system.  Anyone who wants to receive mail at all rents a P.O. box, although I had about half of my mail disappear.  And the official names don’t match the local names at all.   For example, one intersection whose landmark is a building with long plants trailing from its sides, Dekolia, is named after a ministry that isn’t there any more, while Medeena circle has some impossibly long name that sounds like it was named for some battle of Egypt’s former President Nasser.  If you are riding the bus, you will get off at “Medina”.   Chicago has its vanity street names of course, sections of streets being named after some celebrity, but our maps (and our street directions) at least are usable.

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Confluence hunters

jordan-confluence-points1This is amazing.  The Degree Confluence Project has the goal of  “an organized sampling of the world”.

The goal of the project is to visit each of the latitude and longitude integer degree intersections in the world, and to take pictures at each location. The pictures, and stories about the visits, will then be posted here.

The project was started by Alex Jarrett.  He says, “…I liked the idea of visiting a location represented by a round number such as 43°00’00″N 72°00’00″W. What would be there? Would other people have recognized this as a unique spot? Another reason was that my friend managed to convince me to buy a GPS and I had to come up with something to do with it. I also hoped to encourage people to get outside, tromp around in places they normally would never go, and take pictures of it.  I visited several confluences of my own and posted them to my personal web site. Before long others found the site and visited confluences of their own, and it just snowballed from there.”

Your mission, should you choose to accept it:

There is a confluence within 49 miles (79 km) of you if you’re on the surface of Earth. We’ve discounted confluences in the oceans and some near the poles, but there are still 10,699 to be found.

You’re invited to help by photographing any one of these places.

The degree confluence view of a country can yield some completely unexpected views. You can browse the photos by country from the home page or go to their interactive map to browse a particular region.  One of my favorite countries is, of course, Jordan.  I have been almost everywhere in Jordan, everywhere habitable that is, but the views from the crossing of lattitude and longitude lines gives a more pure view of the land use of the country.

Here’s the Jordan entry.  There’s a small map of Jordan showing where the longitude and latitude lines cross and the visits that have been posted by confluence hunters. If you click on a picture, you will get a diary entry for the trip, along with the photos they have posted of the area and the GPS.  Jordan has a lot of variety form one end to the other, but for some reason all the Jordan photos look pretty much the same.  Blue sky, tan sand, and an endless horizon. Here is a trip that was slightly different: you can see a sand storm on the horizon (and inside they have a nice sunset too).  That’s the kind of weather that signals lots of grittiness in the house and the need for an extra bucket of water dumped on the floor and squeegeed across and off the edge of the balcony when cleaning day comes.

It’s an interesting view of Jordan, but not one I would care to make myself if I had limited time in the country.  After all, the most interesting part of the country is the people themselves with their incredible hospitality–and curiosity.  Still, it is, as Jarrett says, a great excuse for people to just “tromp around in places they normally would never go”

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Bedouins and goats

Here is a Jordanian goat.

bedouins-fatimas-goat1

The goat belongs to Fatma. Fatima is the one on the left. Yes, they have tatoos on their faces. I found out later that Jordanian women don’t usually allow themselves to be photographed.  I hope I don’t get into trouble with the Bene Sakr for this one.
bedouins-fatma-and-friend1

Fatima is stirring up the goats with a stick to try to get them to be more photogenic for the picture.

bedouins-fatimas-goatpen1

Then Fatma took a picture of me with the goat. I don’t know if she ever used a camera before.

bedouins-fatimas-goat-without-nijma3

[photo edited]

I know a Jordanian guy who put a photo of his wife on the internet–she had a proper scarf on, hair completely covered  and everything.  He had to take it down after some guys at work started making nasty comments about her. There were pictures of his kids too, but that wasn’t a problem.  I wanted to take a picture of her–I had stayed with the family a few times–but by then she didn’t want anyone taking her picture because of the bad experience.

It’s too bad when women’s photos have to be removed–in any culture. You don’t see that happening with men.

e-Arabs

Tired of politically slanted “news” items about the Middle East? Seems like everyone has an ax to grind, an ethnic or religious group to demonize (preliminary to….?), a book to publicize, or vitriol to barter for that coveted Western visa.

Time to escape the self-serving agendas and look at the ordinary people. Oh, sure, you can find the same old, same old politics in Jordan if you look hard enough, but most Jordanians just don’t go around with a chip on their shoulder hating one group or another.

For a more refreshing, and probably more realistic snapshot of the Middle East, try Wasapnin Jordan, written by a British ex-pat (click the page tabs for photos of Jordan and Amman), or try picking something at random off of the successors to Planet Jordan:  Jordan Blogs, Quaider Planet, or  Girly Gator (sometimes the Arab women like to blog away from the guys)–these are all blog aggregators with several hundred blogs on their blogrolls.

hiv-public-announcement-in-arabicThere’s nothing like a Jordanian blog to give you a slice of real Arab life. Here is just one sample from Jordan Blogs. Moey, who says he  has two friends suffering from AIDS right now, has designed a public service announcement for HIV.  The slogan in Arabic says “When cheating, make sure you’re protected.”  (Click image for larger view). According to his profile:

The free time I have becomes more and more precious to me as the years go by. I’m a working student, I work for one of the most notable advertising agencies in the world. I also like my quiet time to balance out the social leanings of my study and leisure.

If you want some edgy cartoons with a definite pro-Palestinian slant, try Abu Mahjoob. It can sometimes be difficult, but is easily as creative as Doonesbury. Cartoons are in the archives, and the forum is always good for a couple hours.  For those who are more comfortable with same-sex forums, there are also forums for only women or only men.

[Note: This post for some reason has become a magnet for Russian spam comments. Do they not notice the irony of spamming a website in a language other than the one it's written in? I have translated them with a machine translation tool and kept the ones I like--but with the links neutered!]

Pronouncing “King Abdullah” in Arabic

This is way cool.  I just checked back with Forvo, a website for listening to words pronounced in their own languages. Last week I posted the name of Jordan’s King Abdullah II ( الملك عبد الله الثاني بن الحسين) to be pronounced by a native speaker.  Already someone from Jordan has made a recording of the pronunciation. Thanks, lkurdi!

Here’s a breakdown of the Arabic, in case you don’t want to go to the effort with google translate:

الملك king (malik, actually al-malik if you include the definite article)

عبد الله Abdullah (two separate words عبد adb slave or servant and الله Allah,  God–it is forbidden to name anyone “slave” without adding “God” or a name of God). It looks like separate word here, but is actually one word, because the letter dahl د does not connect to any letter that follows it.

الثاني  the second (ithani, actually al-ithani with the definite article)

بن son of (bin, technially ibin ابن is son )

الحسين Hussein (al-Hussein or  “the Hussein”– of course this would be the late King Hussein, Abdullah’s father)

Right now I feel like I could just reach out and touch Jordan.

Jordan’s King Abdullah II on YouTube

If you have never seen King Abdullah the Second of Jordan speak, you can now see him on YouTube, thanks to Charlie Rose.

The videos are: |here| from the Royal Palace in Jordan (date unknown, but after the Palestinian election and before the Iraqi one), |here| from Washington after a meeting with Secretary of State Colin Powell, |March 19, 2002 here|, and |September 16, 2003 here|with the sound quality so poor and out of sync you can hardly hear the video, also King Abdullah is shown |here| in the first two minutes of something called the YPO Leadership conference, date unknown.

Who can forget the King’s entrance into the public spotlight with the Middle Eastern soccer championship, less than a year after the death of his father, the late King Hussein. At every game the king was front and center wearing a sport jersey and jumping up from his seat with both arms straight up in the air whenever there was a goal. No wonder the Jordan team was so inspired to win.

And that poor player from Iraq who made a goal in the wrong direction, inadvertently scoring for Jordan. Things will not go well for him, my Palestinian friends told me. Uday, the son of Saddam Hussein, was in charge of the team and on his return for sure the player would be tortured or killed for that blunder.

On the night that Jordan won the championship, all over the country there was celebratory gunfire. I was watching with some Americans near Madaba and at the end of the game decided not to return to my lodging until all the gunfire was over.

I kept a photo of the King in my digs while I was in Jordan and still have one over my desk. The King’s speeches were available to read in the Jordan Times, somewhat buried in the back pages, but they always published the whole thing verbatim in an “unofficial transcript”. I remember reading Fidel Castro’s speeches back in college. Our university paper used to receive a copy of the Havana propaganda publication with Fidel’s speeches printed in the front. I never did get entirely through one speech. They were just the same thing over and over again. Viva the homeland, venceremos, we will win, etc, etc.

Abdullah’s speeches aren’t at all like that. They are incredibly well thought out. You have to wonder if Abdullah even has a speechwriter–where would he find someone who could express those ideas so well? Apparently he thinks on his feet a lot better than the American presidential candidates too, as I was always amazed by the way he was able to answer reporters’ questions off the cuff.

When I returned to the U.S. I found out that King Abdullah had been interviewed by Charlie Rose several times. Unfortunately you had to have a credit card and order the video which they would mail to you for a nominal fee. So if your old Jordanian roommate is in town overnight and you are in the mood to watch it NOW, too bad. Later the videos got put together into an archive, so you had to order several hours worth of shows to just see one of the king.

The king continued to make riveting speeches, at least from the standpoint of someone like me who was looking for enlightenment about the unfathomable Arab culture, politics, and current events. The Jordan Times continued to print his speeches in their internet edition. Unfortunately they were only online for a week, until their latest Sunday through Thursday issue replaced the previous weeks’ issue. I started cutting and pasting the entire speeches into my January 2004 archives. The Jordan Times now keeps more extensive archives, and the King’s own website has his written pieces that have been published in the west, but this is probably one of the few places you can still find online transcripts of some of the King’s previous speeches.

So now my favorite interviewer, Charlie Rose, and my favorite world leader, King Abdullah, are together on video and available for the world to see. Hopefully Charlies’ s archivists will get around to putting the dates on the videos (and fixing the sound) sometime soon.

Does John McCain want to destroy Jordan?

It was all a hoax, but the Arab world keeps talking about it all the same.

A report that an aide to presidential candidate John McCain wants to turn Jordan into a Palestinian state is apparently a hoax. It was reported widely in the Arab world that Robert Kagan had given a speech at a New York university that advocated turning Jordan into a Palestinian state. But Kagan denies making the statement or even that such a speech took place. The university in question can find no record of any such event where such a speech might have been given.

The speech was reported by news tabloid service Ammonnews, but it was later revealed the information came from the Israeli site Filkka Israel.

In case there is any question about the agenda of the above Arab-language blog, they list (in English) one of their goals as “Destroying the kingdom of Jordan peacefully and bringing back its land to its normal situation as a part of great Palestine.” They have also been known to write dubious stories about such topics as “Saudi Ambassador Saves 3 Mossad Agents but a 4th is still in Beirut [6/15/2008] as well as stories about Israeli intelligence borrowing cars from the wives of Hizbullah members”. Hee, hee, hee.

The above Arab language blog post is translated, rather laboriously, as might be expected with machine translation, with the FoxLingo toolbar as follows:

John McCain Adviser for Foreign Affairs: John built a solid option Jordanian final solution for the Palestinians. نيويورك – جاين بيتيفت New York – Jane Ketevan

خلال محاضرة ترويجية لأفكار المرشح الجمهوري للرئاسة الأميركية جون ماكين في قاعة ألمرت هولمز بوبست في جامعة نيويورك . During the lecture promotional ideas for the Republican presidential candidate John McCain at the American Chamber salary Holmes Stopes at the University of New York. وأمام الآلاف من الطلاب والأكاديميين أعلن الخبير في شؤون الجغرافيا السياسية والسياسات الدولية روبرت كاغان وهو يشكل مع ويليام كريستول الفريق المكلف بتقدم تصور مفصل لإستراتيجية السياسة الخارجية في الشرق الأوسط للمرشح الجمهوري . Faced with thousands of students and academics announced expert in the affairs of political geography and international policies Robert Flanagan It is with William Kristol team progress to imagine a detailed strategy for foreign policy in the Middle East for the Republican candidate.
أعلن روبرت كاغان أن المرشح الرئاسي عن الجمهوريين قد تبنى بالفعل إستراتيجية الخيار الأردني للتخلص من العبء الذي تشكله قضية النزاع الفلسطيني الإسرائيلي حول الأراضي في الضفة الغربية على السياسة العامة للولايات المتحدة في الشرق الأوسط. Robert Flanagan announced that the presidential candidate of the Republican strategy has already built the Jordanian option to get rid of the burden posed by the issue of Palestinian-Israeli dispute over land in the West Bank on the public policy of the United States in the Middle East. الخبير المعروف في الشؤون الدولية والمحسوب على الصقور المسماة ” نيو كون ” قال بأن السياسة الأميركية الخارجية مع جون ماكين ستأخذ منحى مباشرا للتعامل مع القضية بشكل يريح المنطقة ودولها للتفرغ بمعاونة الأميركيين لنشر الديمقراطية ومحاربة إرهاب الإسلام الفاشي. Known expert in international affairs and calculated the hawks, called “New fact”, he said that U.S. foreign policy with John McCain will take direct action to deal with the issue and its comfort zone for full-time help of the Americans to spread democracy and fight terrorism fascist Islam. وفي شرحه للإستراتيجية الجديدة قال: In his explanation of the new strategy, he said:
الأردن هو الوطن الطبيعي لملايين الفلسطينيين من سكانه وكذلك هو الحل الأمثل لقضية اللاجئين الذين ذاب أغلبهم في المجتمعات التي يقيمون فيها ولكن البقية ممن تعيش في المخيمات سيكون عليها الإختيار بين البقاء في أماكنها أو الإستيطان في الأراضي الفلسطينية شرق الأردن . Jordan is the natural home for millions of Palestinians of the population and also is the best solution to the issue of refugees who have mostly melted away in the communities in which they reside, but the rest of those who live in the camps will have to choose between staying in place or settle in the Palestinian territories east of Jordan. وقد أثار إ‘ستخدام روبرت كاغان لتعبير ” الأراضي الفلسطينية شرق الأردن ” وهو الخبير الأميركي المعروف بأنه كاتب إستراتيجيات عدة بخصوص الدول العربية إستفادت منها الإدارة الأميركية برئاسة جورج بوش وهو مقرب منها، أثار إستغراب الأكادميين الحاضرين فوجه أحدهم سؤال لكاغان فور إتاحة الفرصة له وقال: The effects of a ‘Khaddam Robert Flanagan of the term “Palestinian land east of Jordan” which is known to be an American expert writer strategies regarding several Arab countries benefited from the American administration headed by George W. Bush is close, the effects of amazement academic attendees drew one of them asked Flanagan soon allow him and said:
هل يعني ذلك أن الضفة وغزة لن تكونا مكانا لدولة فلسطينية مستقبلية وفقا لإعلان جورج بوش العام 2003؟ Does this mean that the West Bank and Gaza will not be a place for a future Palestinian state, according to George Bush declared the year 2003? فأجاب كاغان: Agha replied:
الأردن يضم أغلبية فلسطينية ومن الطبيعي حين نتحدث عن الدمقراطية أن تحكم الأغلبية في بلدها، وبالتالي لن يكون هناك حاجة لدولة أخرى لأنها بالفعل موجودة وهي قائمة ويمكن للعائلة الهاشمية أن تبقى في الملك إن أراد الشعب الفلسطيني ذلك، أما عن الضفة الغربية فمشكلتها بسيطة، التجمعات السكانية الإسرائيلية تبقى جزءا من دولة إسرائيل والتجمعات السكانية الفلسطينية يتم تبادل الأراضي فيما بينها وبين إسرائيل حيث هي غير قابلة للتواصل مع الدولة الفلسطينية شرق الأردن والباقي يصبح جزءا من فلسطين التي تمتد من حدود العراق إلى حدود إسرائيل. Jordan has a majority Palestinian Of course when we talk about Damaqratih that govern the majority in the country, and therefore there will be no need for another country because it already exists a list of the family can remain in the Hashemite king that he wanted the Palestinian people, either from the West Bank problem is simple, residential areas Israel remains part of the State of Israel and the Palestinian population centres are exchanging land between them and Israel, where they are not continue with a Palestinian state east of Jordan and the rest become part of Palestine which extends from Iraq’s borders to the borders of Israel.
سؤال آخر وجه لكاغان عن غزة فقال: هاواي تبعد الاف الأميال عن الأراضي الأميركية ورغم ذلك هي جزء من هذه البلاد . Another question to face Flanagan said from Gaza: Hawaii thousands of miles away from U.S. territory, although it is part of this country. طالب أردني إعترض على كاغان وقال له بأنه من أصل فلسطيني ولا يوافقه الرأي فأجابه : Jordanian student objected to the songs and told him that, of Palestinian origin does not share his opinion replied:
وأنا لا أوافقك الرأي ايضا …لقد أصبحنا متعادلين ويمكننا أن نكون أصدقاء ما أثار الضحك في القاعة . I do not share his ideas … We are also equivalent and we can be friends as the effects of laughter in the hall.

Here are the two photographs that appear on the blog with the hoax:

And who might Robert Kagan be? He is one of the neoconservatives (as opposed to “pragmatists”) currently vying for McCain’s favor, although he claims he is not a Straussian. That appears to be his photo on the right. Here is a podcast of him speaking about his book The Return of History, and the video of an interview with Charlie Rose here.

And who might be the other photo? Is it “Jane Ketevan”, the purported author of the piece? No Google hits on that name. What about spelling it more like the Arabic spelling–”Jane Beteft”? Still no hits. if you click on the photo in the original blog and check the properties, it gives the information “pitfieldmain.jpg”. Could this be a photo of Canadian politician Jane Pitfield, who once ran for mayor of Toronto? Could be. Maybe a really old photo of her. This “destroy Jordan” thing doesn’t sound like the type of thing she would be interested in though.

Oh, but what does it mean? By now everyone in the Arab world has figured out the whole thing was a fake, but they keep talking about it just the same. Does anything happen by accident over there?

Maybe it’s an attempt to discredit Kagan and the neocons ahead of the U.S. elections–after all, Kagan’s brother is the architect of the Iraqi “surge”. Or maybe it is a another push towards Palestinian statehood, as the clock keeps ticking on the American political window of opportunity for George W. Bush. Bush could set it up for McCain, so McCain can ride the euphoria of an apparent Middle East resolution into the November elections without incurring blame or displeasure from the conservative Jewish vote.

What IS the Bush administration doing about Palestinian statehood???

Jordan celebrates independence–and the King reminds us it’s time for Palestinian independence

May 25 is Jordan’s independence day.

Happy Birthday Jordan!!!!

In a televised statement celebrating Jordan’s independence, King Abdullah II talked about supporting Palestinian independence:

We will not hesitate in performing any role or effort and exploiting our ties with influential powers and international forums to enable our Palestinian brethren to regain their right and set up their independent state….

We will continue to commit ourselves to the choice of just peace based on international legitimacy resolutions and within the Arab consensus.

Good idea.

But how does a nation become independent these days? I really have no clue.

American wrote a Declaration of Independence, then fought a war against England. Would anyone fight a war against Palestine if they just went ahead and declared independence?

So how exactly did Jordan get to be independent?

  • From 16th century: Jordan was part of the Ottoman empire, ruled from Damascus.
  • After WWII, the League of Nations created the French Mandate of Syria and the British Mandate Palestine.
  • 1921-Britain gave Transjordan semi-autonomous control
  • On March 22, 1946 Britain signed a treaty granting independence to Jordan
  • 1946-British requested United Nations approval to ending the British Mandate in Transjordan
  • The Jordanian Parliament proclaimed King Abdullah the first king of The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan
  • The king proclaimed the state to be officially inaugurated and a series of ceremonies was done in the morning of May 25 in the capital of Amman.

So those were the steps back in the last century. Either a war or an agreement with whatever country it’s already a part of, then approval by an international body, then recognition by its own internal government. It looks like it helps if a major world power sponsors the UN resolution.

So I say the Palestinians themselves have to take the next step. They need to plan their party.

First they will have to declare independence. They already have a legislature and an elected leader, although he’s probably still getting his strength back from the surgery, but they can still pass some resolutions. Then they will have to get either George Bush or the Queen of England to sponsor a UN resolutiuon. Then they pass some resolutions and have a ceremony. Then they get official recognition by Jordan, the U.S. and England, in which order, I don’t know. Then I guess they play the birthday song and dance the dubka for about the next week. After that they can get around to manufacturing passports and figuring out who to bribe to get them.

Or something like that.

Someone tell me why this can’t work.

Posted in Jordan, Middle East, Palestine, peace, الأردن. Tags: , , . Comments Off

Unicorns to return to Jordan’s Wadi Rhum

You gotta love the Jordanians’ use of diplomatic language.

“Some animals died: either they fell over heights, or simply due to the difference between Wadi Rum and Shomari environment and climate,” explains Jamal Zaidaneen, head of the Nature Conservation Department at Wadi Rum Nature Reserve. He is explaining what happened to the 10 Arabian oryx that were once brought to Wadi Rhum from the Shomari Wildlife Reserve near Azraq in the north of Jordan.

Ha ha ha ha ha

حا حا حا حا حا

I can tell you what happened. My bedouin buddies in Rhum, the ones who try to make a living taking tourists around, shot the oryx for sport while they were out roaming around the desert with their Landrovers and their guns. The locals in Shomari would do the same thing if the oryx weren’t fenced in.

The Arabian oryx–translated in the Bible as “unicorn”–is extinct in the wild, but a few still survive in captivity. Now Wadi Rhum, in the south of Jordan, is about to receive 40 more Arabian oryx.

Why shoot the oryx? Shrug. Aren’t they protected by law? If the Jordanian government comes around and tries to stop us, they will get killed too. They know not to mess with us. But they’re almost extinct. Don’t you want to save them? Shrug. Is oryx good to eat? Slowly came the answer. Yes. But I bet that particular oryx wasn’t eaten; it was killed for sport. How do you convince someone from another culture of the value of preserving an entire species? What about tourists? If you have oryx here, won’t more tourists come and you will make more money showing them around in your landrover? No answer. Hmmm.

And the new Oryx project?

The project’s first phase includes designating a 21-kilometre fenced area, where the animals will be set loose, Zaidaneen said, explaining that the herd needs first to adapt to its new environment, climate and plants.

“There is no time frame for this stage, but it is expected to extend over two to three months, during which the oryx will be given the time to adjust to their new habitat which will ensure its survival chances,” Zaidaneen added.

Ah, the uses of words. While the oryx are adjusting in their new corral, no doubt my Bedouin friends will also have a chance to adjust to the oryx. Let’s hope it happens during tourist season and that some sweet young Western women will have fascinating conversations with the bedouins (Arab women do not talk to men unless they are relatives) and that the Bedouins will come to see the survival of the oryx as a crucial part of their tourist gig. Maybe they will even pick up some environmentalist rap to impress the ladies with.

Then what happens to the oryx?

Twenty animals will be flown from the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Oman and Qatar, Zaidaneen said, adding that the environment and climate of these countries is similar to Wadi Rum, which will raise their survival chances.

These animals, which form the first and main herd, will be released early next year into the wild and will be monitored by satellites which will follow their movement and behaviour.

“Under the second phase, satellites will be installed to monitor the herd. The Arabian oryx walks around 60 kilometres daily looking for food; using this advanced technique will save us time and effort and ensure the animals’ safety,” Zaidaneen noted.

The third phase includes bringing another 40 heads, in two batches, to be also released into the Jordanian wild.

Ha ha ha ha ha

حا حا حا حا حا

Tracked by satellites! Excellent!! Let’s see the bedouins try to take out a satellite while they’re out tearing around in the desert with their Landrovers and their guns and their cellphones.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

From The Jordan Times May 1, 2008, jordantimes(DOT)com

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