Via DEBKA Weekly. Do you want to bet that Obama will torpedo the deal?
The Greater Sunni Kingdom of Jordan
For the first time in decades, the centuries-old royal banner of the Hashemite House of Jordan was unfurled in a quiet, history-loaded ceremony in the Jordanian capital of Amman on June 9. It was presented with great solemnity by Jordan’s King Abdullah II to the Chief of the Royal Armed Forces, Lt. Gen. Meshal Al Zaben, in the presence of the royal family, ministers of state and high officials.
The dark red flag which proclaims, “There is no God but Allah and Muhammad is His Messenger,” was first hoisted by Al Sharif Abu Nami in 1515. Prince Abdullah, later King Abdullah I and great-grandfather of the incumbent monarch, symbolically raised the banner in 1920 when he led his troops to Maan in southern Jordan during the Great Arab Revolt.
By handing over this highly symbolic flag, Abdullah elevated his army’s status as the bearer and defender of a historic Arab national and Islamic message. He reaffirmed the “noble status of the armed forces” and their role as “carrier of a pan-nationalist and Islamic message throughout their history and in the future.”
It must be said that this high-sounding message and this banner was peripheral to the Hashemite Kingdom’s contemporary history until it was hauled out on June 9, 2015.
But that ceremony, DEBKA Weekly reveals, imbued the old symbols with high practical significance.
New Saudi monarch broaches ambitious new plan
When King Salman bin Abdulaziz ascended the Saudi throne last January, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant was well on the way to engulfing western and central Iraq and northern, eastern and southern Syria. On the assumption that the United States could not be relied on to keep the tide away from his realm, the new king started the ball rolling on a revolutionary scheme. It hinged on expanding the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan to form a Sunni-ruled buffer state as a barrier against the encroaching jiahdist peril – even if this entailed ditching post-Colonial borders and redrawing the Middle East map anew.
The two Sunni monarchs quickly put their heads together on the plan.
During their face-to-face conversations and phone calls, Salman maintained that there was no time to be lost because Abu Bakr Al-Baghdad’s Islamic caliphate, unless stopped, was bound to get stronger and devour bigger slices of territory in Syria, Iraq, Lebanon and the Palestinian-ruled Gaza Strip. ISIS strongholds might also rise in Palestinian-ruled on Palestinian Authority-controlled areas of the West Bank, right up to Jordan’s western border.
Jordan would double in area, quadruple its Sunni population