Who manufactures these news?

تم نشره في Tue 18 February / Feb 2014. 01:58 PM

By Jumana Ghunaimat

In a tense environment some days ago, rumor had it that the government is planning to scrape surnames from the Civil Status Department's (CSD) records.

Director General of the department, Marwan Qtaishat, responded conclusively, stressing that surnames in the CSD's records and on the national identification cards are governed by laws in effect, and there will be no "scraping of the surname off the CSD's records".

According to what Qtaishat said to my colleague Hamzeh Dana from Al Ghad's website, the Jordanian Civil Law clearly stated that surnames should be present in the CSD's records and on the national ID cards.

The problem with these kind of news is that it creates tension. It is not separated from the events and news that strikes a chord in Jordan, as it stokes fears present in a large segment of the society, and makes it worry about its future and identity.

I do not think the report was innocent, exactly like the previous attacks within the media and Parliament that pretended to defend the tribes, as they all aim at one thing; exactly like the attacks on the decision to grant civil rights to children of Jordanian women who are married to foreigners, under the ploy that it means the beginning of domestication, a covert attempt to the alternative home theory, and an attempt to finding a solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict at the expense of Jordan.

The polarization, media wars, and screaming to intimidate others are practices that come from people who are used to taking advantage of the situation to reach their end goals. While, in reality, they are only trying to protect interests they have gained and are scared they will lose if there is a change in the status quo and a civil state is in power.

There is no better way than this instinct-based rhetoric to scare the people for their present and future, to pass an agenda that hinders reforms, making the public believe that reform is a "bogyman" or a "ghoul" that need to be fought. Unfortunately, that is what is happening. 

This agenda seems clear when they try to frighten the tribes on a secret plan to end the Arab-Israeli conflict at the expense of Jordan, under the names "alternative home" and "domestication".

Incidently, it is the same battle between reform and the status quo, as long as it creates an added value for a group or another, it stays there as long as the civil state, justice, and equal opportunity are absent, and there's an apparent lack of opportunities for political participation.

The problem is those who create tension are exactly like those who are playing with fire. They definitely realize that, ignoring all the regional challenges that are lurking for Jordan to a greater extent than granting civil rights to the children of our daughters. Domestic unity has a lot more to strengthen it than tear it apart, which should be a base for political rhetoric.

the environment in the country is toxic, because of the isolationist and accusative rhetoric. There are fears within a society the third of which are tense youth whose mentality developed during the Arab spring, watching death become part of everyday life. The youth has been provoked, too. A warning should be sounded for a possible collision between the two poles in a society that does not need new reasons to be angry.




This article is an edited translation from the Arabic edition.