August 14, 2018

On the evening of Tuesday, August 14, 2018, the researcher Saleh Abu Tawila signed his new book “Ma’an’s Salafism: An Anthropological and Sociological Study” (issued by the Center for Strategic Studies in cooperation with the National Publishing House), and the symposium was opened by Dr. Musa Shteiwi, Director of the Center for Strategic Studies, and moderated by Attorney Saed Karajah, Director of the Free Thought Forum. The author spoke, then followed by researcher Dr. Muhammad Abu Rumman, from the Center for Strategic Studies on the book and the results of the study.

The book “Ma’an’s Salafism” deals with an in-depth analysis of the historical conditions and the special geographical, political and cultural conditions in Ma’an Governorate, and traces the development and emergence of the Salafist group in the governorate and the transformations it has undergone, leading to the birth of the Salafi-jihadi movement.

 The author then moves to the formation of the Salafi group there, and it was initially of a peaceful nature, until leaders emerged from its womb, then local individuals and returnees from Afghanistan, and some members of the Arab communities joined it to form the first “nuclei” to form the current and crystallize it in the city.

Then the book the divisions within the current that occurred in parallel, synchronization and identification with the higher divisions among the Jordanian jihadi movement itself, and gives us an in-depth picture of the causes of these differences, their dimensions and their repercussions on the jihadi movement in the province.

The book deconstructs the social and political discourse of Ma’an’s Salafis, the tools they used in recruitment, their relationship with the local community, and their influence on it. Then it devotes a chapter to studying and analyzing the backgrounds and characteristics of individuals who moved from the movement to Iraq and Syria and fought and were killed there. , before approaching the future of the jihadist phenomenon in the city.

Dr. says. Musa Shteiwi, Director of the Center for Strategic Studies at the University of Jordan, said that the publication of this book in cooperation with the distinguished researcher Saleh Abu Tawila, who is from the Ma’an Governorate, and specialists in sociology, came in the context of the center’s research interest in studying, analyzing and dismantling social and political phenomena, including A study of the evolution of extremist and terrorist trends in Jordan, and a deeper understanding of the methods of recruitment and upbringing and the surrounding circumstances, which puts the strategy to combat these phenomena in the right context based on scientific and objective studies.

And Shteiwi added, “The advantage of this study is that the researcher has a high skill in reading the historical conditions, local transformations, the tribal structure of the city of Ma’an and the global transformations on the Salafi-jihadi phenomenon and its dynamic interaction that produced the phenomenon of Ma’an Salafism.”

The author of the book, Saleh Abu Tawila, talks about the subject of the study, saying, “Salafism in Ma’an was distinguished from other Salafist groups in Jordan with important advantages in terms of structure, social structure, size of influence, and ability to mobilize and confront, and Maan’s Salafism – compared to Salafi groups spread in Jordanian cities – More influential and influential in the local community in which it was raised, as it was able to reproduce the conditions of its permanence and authority, impose its conditions and achieve a large part of its goals. In some circumstances, it was able to mobilize and lead social groups within popular movements, and many face-to-face clashes with state agencies; This is something that the rest of the Salafi groups in other cities have not been able to achieve.”

Abu Tawila refers to the difficulties encountered in preparing the book, as he says, “The study of the Salafi phenomenon in Ma’an is characterized by sensitivity and complexity, given the political and security conditions that place Salafi groups within the framework of “terrorism,” and the reluctance of many members of these groups to appear in the media. The study is to get closer – through its research tools and the appropriate conditions that it provided – to the totality of the activities, activities, proposals, discussions and speeches of that group, whether in the public space or in electronic platforms, and through direct contact with Salafism and its field practices, and its various activities in different periods of time.”

On the other hand, Dr. Muhammad Abu Rumman “The jihadi movement in Ma’an formed a fertile media material, as a result of its activity and the participation of some of its members in the battlefields with ISIS and Al-Nusra, and its sit-ins, in a socio-political environment (the city of Ma’an), which is – in and of itself – a political and media issue for a long time as a result of Many crises entered into with the state.

Abu Rumman added, “The book is of a degree of epistemological and practical importance, as “the jihadist movement there remained outside the context of serious scientific research and linked to prejudices and impressionism by politicians and media professionals until Saleh Abu Tawila completed his deep and distinguished study.”

Abu Rumman indicates that, personally, he had a great curiosity in me about the nature of the Salafi-jihadi movement in Ma’an, and its social, cultural and economic characteristics, for more than one reason, foremost of which is the confusion in many cases that we have followed up in our scientific studies and in the media for people who were working in arms smuggling. For example, or they have security priorities, but after their killing they were considered part of the jihadist movement there, and those affiliated with it, and there is more than one example of this case, which prompts the question whether there is a specific alliance for those who are considered “outlaws”, from among the sons of Current and wanted on the background of other issues.

It is noteworthy that the Center for Strategic Studies at the University of Jordan has published another book on the study and analysis of the jihadist trend in Jordan entitled “The Sociology of Extremism and Terrorism in Jordan,” which was authored by Dr. Muhammad Abu Rumman and Dr. Musa Shteiwi, as he had published several books that dealt with political Islam movements in Jordan, including the book “The Islamic Solution in Jordan: Islamists, the State and Questions of Democracy and Security.”