Jordan: Balancing Challenges and Successes

Categories: Country

The nation of Jordan is located in the Middle East region of the world and lies at 31 00 degrees north longitude and 36 00 degrees latitude. Jordan is located simply north of Saudi Arabia and is also bordered by the countries of Iraq, Israel, Syria, and West Bank. On a more common scale, Jordan is just a tad smaller sized then the more recognized country of India with 89, 213 total square miles, also having a 26-mile shoreline. The land of the nation is mainly dry desert climate in the east, with more of a highland area towards the western parts.

The estimated population of Jordan as of July of the year 2000 was an overall of 4,998,564 people, with 38% of the people under 14 years, 59% of individuals in between 15 and 64 years, and just 3% of the population over sixty- 5 years old. Overall these figures offer the country a typical population development of roughly 3.1% annually with a birth rate of 26.24 births per 1,000 people, and a death rate of 2.63 deaths per 1,000 individuals.

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Of the entire population, 98% of the Jordanians are Arab, while just 2% of the population consists of Circassions and Armenians. Arabic is the apparent language of the country, and the major faith of Jordan is Sunni Muslim, which is practiced by 96% of the population. The other 4% of Jordanian faith is Christian, which to me is quite stunning thinking about the truth that the Holy Lands are so close including the major holy city of Jerusalem.

With an extremely insufficient supply of water and oil, Jordan's economy is clearly suffering, and the Persian Gulf crisis in August of 1990 only included fuel to the fire.

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Throughout the crisis, lots of refugees flooded the country, which ultimately wound up straining major federal government resources. Even with the federal government having a hard time to provide assistance for its individuals, the hardship line in Jordan draws someplace in the variety of 30%, which is not that bad thinking about the aspects mentioned above. The workforce in Jordan is likewise surprisingly strong with 1.15 million people. The significant industries in Jordan are phosphate mining, petroleum mining, cement production, and with such gorgeous scenery, who could forget tourism. The inflation rate yearly is around 3%, and 1 U.S. dollar is worth someplace in the neighborhood of 70.9 cents in Jordan.

As far as politics go, Jordan is very similar to the United States. Like the U.S., the government is divided into three branches: Executive, Legislative, and Judicial. The leader of the executive branch which is known as the Jordanian Monarch, or chief executive has the same rights of the president of the United States. The Legislature is made up of a house of representatives with 141 members, and a Senate made up of 40 members, which are appointed to office by the Jordanian Monarch. The Judicial system is a bit different in Jordan because there are two court systems: Civil and Religious. Lower magistrate courts are used to settle small claims, and more serious cases and appeals are sent to the Jordanian Supreme Court, which is known as the Court of Cassation. Religious courts in Jordan settle on issues dealing with marriage, divorce, and wills.

The Jordan Police also have many similarities to the policing used here in the United States. The average police department in Jordan is divided into several different areas, which include investigations, operations and patrol, planning and organization, personnel, civil guards, and also border guards. One thing that I found very interesting during my research was that Jordan, and other Middle East countries including Israel have some of the best scientists and equipment in the world when it comes to the area of forensics. The police force in Jordan mainly focuses on the so -called serious criminal, and tries to crack down with the use of very strong preventive policing.

Though the police are very tough on criminal acts and suspected criminal acts, the Jordanian Constitution still gives the people the rights to freedom of speech, press, association, academics, political parties, religion, and a right to vote. The typical Jordanian police department is basically the same set up as here in the United States with ranking of officers and daily duties and routines. However, since Jordan is in the Middle East where a lot of terrorist activity goes on, special task forces are assigned to deal with terrorism. Terrorism is a very serious problem, and that is obviously why such serious attention is granted towards it.

Even though Jordan is located in the Middle East where a lot of world problems exist as far as terrorism and random acts of violence occur, Jordan surprisingly has a phenomenally low crime rate. The following chart lists Jordan's crime rates versus crime rates of the United States and Sweden.

Number of Crimes per 100,000 Citizens Category U.S.A. Sweden Jordan Total Offenses 5374.4 12,620.3 897.5 Murder 8.9 9.5 6.9 Rape 39.2 20.6 0.9 Theft (all kinds) 4896.1 7410.5 160.4 Violent Theft 237.7 60.5 1.1 Auto Theft 591.2 616.1 15.7 Drug Offenses No Data 358.48 6.7 Source: International Crime Statistics. International Criminal Police Association (INTERPOL), Lyon, France, 1994.

The main reason behind such a low crime rate is the quality use of preventive policing, and also providing young people with good educations and offering many programs for teens to keep them out of trouble.

As you can see, Jordanian law enforcement is quite similar to that of the United States except for the fact that here in the United States we gear more towards the area of community orientated policing while in Jordan more extreme measures of preventive policing are used. Many would say that because of Jordan's low crime rate, the United States should switch back to a more preventive approach, but people have to remember that these are two very different cultures, and by switching back to preventive policing it would only make things worse here in America.

In conclusion, I was very surprised to learn that Jordan actually seems like a decent place to live even though its location in the world and resources are not that great. It seems that Jordan's name is always brought up in these Middle East crisis just because it is located in between where everything is going on. More than 99% of the time Jordan never has anything to do with the wrong doings of the Middle East. The police departments are effective for the simple fact that they do not joke around.

The punishments are indeed harsh, but they obviously make a good point because the crime rate is very low. I feel bad for the people of Jordan because they seem to be good people, but unfortunately always stuck in the middle of many ongoing crisis, including right now with the fighting going on between Israel and Palestine. Jordan is not a typical stereotyped Middle East country, it is a hard working country with a great police force that gets good results in the long run.

Works Cited

1. Microsoft Encarta Encyclopedia, 2000 version.

2. 3. Constitution of Jordan 4. 5.

Updated: Nov 30, 2023
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Jordan: Balancing Challenges and Successes. (2016, Jul 21). Retrieved from

Jordan: Balancing Challenges and Successes essay
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