Jordan Getting the Royal Flush

King Hussein moves to stem a crisis

The riots were over by the time King Hussein rushed home to Amman, but the damage had already been done. Four days of violent protests across the country had left eight dead, 89 injured and the government under fire. As soon as he arrived from Washington, Hussein moved swiftly to contain the trouble, replacing his Prime Minister of four years, Zaid Rifai. A few days later, the King announced "speedy steps" toward Jordan's first parliamentary elections in 22 years.

The moves helped restore calm to what has traditionally been the Middle East's most stable nation. But the outburst caught the government...

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