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Dearest Jordan

Flag of Jordan, by Ibrahim Owais,CC BY-SA 2.0. Modified by Eyas Sharaiha.

Photo by Ibrahim Oweis (edited). Source. License: CC Att-SA 2.0

As the end of my extended winter vacation approaches, the stay back home has come to a (temporary) end. I'll be on a 15 hour trip to get me to my "third home" in Boston, Massachusetts (we have always been taught "المدرسة بيتك الثاني", meaning "school is your second home") in anticipation of another lovely semester at MIT! Though it is probably juvenile to 'say goodbye' before spending a short time apart from home, I have garnered a few observations and articulated my timeless feelings and attitudes towards Jordan, and why such feelings and attitudes (positively) inhibit me to begin with. So here we go...

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No intent to negatively target websites, constructive criticism is welcome, government says

In an uplifting turn of events, Samih al-Ma`ayta, political adviser of the prime minister and one of those assigned to work on the implementation of the Cassation Court’s ruling on Websites and the Press and Publication law, said earlier today that the government welcomes coordination and constructive criticism, according to AmmonNews.

There is no battle between the government and the electronic media, and the government welcomes constructive criticism and values differing opinions on the matter, and will not seek any form of the law without the consultation and approval with publishers of online journals, and welcomes the cooperation with all concerned parties to achieve the fitting formulation. We are committed too coordinate with those who disagree and no one-sided decision will be reached.

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Dear Jordanian Blogger, Don't Change—Not yet at least!

I know the whole talk about inclusion of websites in the press and publication law can indicate some very bad scenarios, chief among them is self-censorship, fear of writing critical high-quality articles, etc. My only message to the Jordanian blogosphere is: don’t change.

There are a lot of things we don’t know yet, and unless there’s direct evidence that says that we should worry, we shouldn’t. That is not to say that we shouldn’t care about the issue, but we shouldn’t let it change our attitude towards whatever it is that we do.

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Camp Chapman attack and the Blame Game

The Jordanian General Intelligence Directorate, a rather mysterious intelligence organization, is becoming the subject of much talk post the Camp Chapman attack, occurring on December 30th, 2009.

People are shocked that the suicide bomber responsible for the attack came into the base without the routine security measures. The attacker, currently identified by the CIA and western sources as Humam al-Balawi (though Jordanians call for more investigation), is responsible for the death of eight, among them Sharif Ali bin Zeid, a GID official.

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