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Why Do Zarqawi and Bush Bomb? Because We Let Them
A group calling itself "Al-Qaeda in Iraq" has reportedly claimed responsibility for the bombings in Jordan; the group is headed by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, who takes his name from the impoverished town of Zarqa in Jordan where is was born.
I visited the place when I was in Jordan earlier this year. I was traveling with my dad back from Syria to Amman and we stopped in for an hour, wandering its crowded streets. My dad lived in Zarqa for a time after being driven out of his home in the Galilee, now northern Israel, by Zionist forces in 1948. Zarqa is a cramped small city now, but in 1948 virtually all that was there was an Army base.
My dad, as a teenager ended up there, separated from his immediate family, along with thousands of other Palestinians in what became a refugee camp. It swelled further after Israel's conquest during the 1967 War turned hundreds of thousands more Palestinians villagers and townspeople from the West Bank into refugees in Jordan. There are other camps around Amman which are still more refugee camp and less city.
People in Zarqa are poor and struggling for the most part, you can now see some footage of it on TV, because of Zarqawi's notoriety, which rather illustrates a point few Americans would care to think of too long.
My dad was lucky. He could have ended up stuck in Lebanon, where hundreds of thousands of Palestinian remain. But he had a relative, who would later become my Godfather, who was an officer in the Jordanian Army. He helped my dad out, though early on my dad barely had enough to eat at times, in spite of the crucial though minimal help of the UN.