According to Al Jazeera (in Arabic), a new study by Muhammad Abou Rumman and Hassan Haneyeh, described as experts in Islamic groups, criticizes how the government deals with "Jihadist Salafism" (in other words, militant traditionalist literalists).
It should be noted that Jordan over the last two decades have seen groups that ended up producing not only local terror attacks, but also international leaders of terrorist groups such as Abu Mus'ab al-Zarqawi, as well as theorists and ideologues like Abu Muhammad Al Maqdisi.
The study criticizes the way the government deals with such local groups, trying to address them as a security threat only, using the police and intelligence, without addressing root causes or preventive measures such as socio-economic issues, development, and political reform.
The study also criticizes the government for its lack of support in promoting moderate modernist Islamic figures, and instead relied on non-Militant, non-Jihadist Salafism who share the same ideology with the militants.
Which Islam is good?
The authors advocate supporting the reformist Islamic movements who advocate democracy and a civil society and politics.
The favoring of one brand of Islamic school of thought vs. the others is overly simplistic and has no roots in history, as I describe elsewhere. But all in all, this study hits the nail on the head.
Egypt is the same as Jordan
In Egypt, miltiant Islamists have been deal with solely by the often brutal Ministry of Interior, and the very biased Military courts. The results is more radicalization for those that end up in prisons (including the al-Qaeda ideologue, Ayman al-Zawahri).
The disaster that was The War on Terror
The Bush regime took this a step further and made it a full scale war on whole countries and the abstract concept of terrorism, with little positive results, and driving hundreds into the arms of al-Qaeda who saw the death and destruction that resulted from these wars.
Now Barack Obama has discontinued the use of the term "war on terror" and made it "war on al-Qaeda". A rational move.
Saudi Arabia deals with the problem the same as Egypt, but also has some rehabilitation programs for those that are found to be members of these groups, which has been shown to work in most cases.
An ounce of prevention
Still, all the above are remedial, with varying degrees of success (or lack thereof) and not preventative.
Addressing the hard issues that lead to militancy is not adequate to say the least. The reasons are many: authoritarian rulers in the Arab region, the absence of a political process, rigged or controlled elections, poverty, lack of economic opportunity, and the marginalization of youth.
Add to that external factors such as global geopolitics, actions by Western powers, and the Palestine-Israel issue.
These issues require multi-decade actions to analyze, plan actions for, and implement. There is no interest nor will to start addressing them though in the Arab region.