World: Arab Guerrillas v. Arab Governments

AMONG superstitious Arabs, the young King of Jordan is regarded with particular awe because of his uncanny gift for survival. Small wonder. As a teenager, Hussein narrowly escaped the assassin's bullets that cut down his grandfather King Abdullah outside Jerusalem's Al Aqsa mosque. Since mounting the chronically shaky throne in 1953, Hussein, now 34, has repeatedly evaded bullets and bombs.

Last week the King's luck held, but barely. Friction between cocky Palestinian guerrillas in Jordan and army troops loyal to Hussein erupted into three days of bloody warfare. The King's government—and the King...

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