In this episode of Hebrew Voices, Apartheid in Palestinian Jordan, Nehemia Gordon speaks with Mudar Zahran, Secretary General of the Jordanian Opposition Coalition and an orthodox Muslim who advocates for separation of mosque and state. According to Zahran, the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan is really a Palestinian State in which the vast majority of the population are treated like second-class citizens in the country where they were born. The Jordanian-born Zahran currently lives in exile in London—facing a life sentence in prison in Jordan because of his outspoken opposition to the apartheid regime that rules the country.
Zahran begins by explaining the Turkish, Ottoman and British occupations of Jordan and the Hashemites who currently rule there. This group of 87 Bedouins rules over eight million people (primarily Palestinians) without granting rights or representation. Zahran translates a popular proverb among Palestinians in Jordan, “Israel is more merciful.”
Explaining that US policy makers will only speak with the Hashemites and the Muslim Brotherhood, Zahran calls on US listeners to contact their congressional representatives and urge them to have communications with the Jordanian Opposition Coalition. Zahran is straightforward that his coalition seeks power in Jordan—power to honor and expand the peace agreement with Israel, to shut down Islamist groups in Jordan, and to expand the war on terror.