Factsheet: U.S. Security Sector Assistance to Jordan
On the heels of King Abdullah II’s visit to Washington, a new SAM factsheet looks at the longstanding U.S. security partnership with the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan.
Jordan is one of the largest historical recipients of U.S. foreign aid, amounting to more than $22 billion since 1951. Accordingly, Jordan has long played an outsized role in U.S. security policy in the MENA region and has steadily seen its military assistance package grow to hundreds of millions annually. According to the Congressional Research Service, Jordan is the third-largest recipient of annual U.S. foreign aid globally, after Afghanistan and Israel.
The factsheet gives an overview of the key programs that make up Amman’s security assistance package, including hundreds of millions in Foreign Military Financing and the Department of Defense’s building partner capacity programs.
The factsheet also details how Jordan benefits from a rare Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that promises U.S. security assistance years in advance. Jordan is currently in the fifth and final year of its current MOU.
The House & Senate Foreign Relations Committees have put a $875 million arms sale to Nigeria on hold in light of “possible human rights abuses by the government.” The transfer would have included twelve AH-1 Cobra helicopters from American arms manufacturer Bell Textron, along with associated parts & munitions.
The UN Security Council has voted to extend the arms embargo & sanctions in place since 2013 on the Central African Republic for another year. China abstained from the vote in a demonstration of its opposition to the measure.
The United States will still launch airstrikes to help Afghan security forces counter the Taliban in Afghanistan “from over the horizon,” where violence has escalated in recent months as the U.S. military continues to withdraw.
Intra-African security assistance continues as the continent grapples with its ongoing battle against violent extremism and insurgency. In an effort to bolster this capacity, Botswana has deployed nearly three hundred soldiers to assist Mozambique in facilitating peaceful conditions in its northern region.
Alexander Mikheev, CEO of Russia’s state intermediary for defense imports and exports, confirmed that Moscow is working with the ruling junta in Myanmar to provide security assistance and arms sales, including aircraft.
Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi announced on Sunday that there is “no need for any foreign combat forces on Iraqi soil.” An official withdrawal deadline for U.S.-led coalition was not mentioned, but Kadhimi did assert that Iraqi troops no longer require their support to defend Iraq from the Islamic State.
Representative Ilhan Omar introduced a bill to block security assistance to nations found to be in violation of international humanitarian law. As a lead-in to her call for action, Representative Omar called for an end to security assistance to Tunisia in response to the Tunisian government’s “assault on democracy.”
Citing the program’s failure to effectively curb drug-related violence, the Mexican government announced this week that it would seek to overhaul the $3 billion Merida Initiative, a US counter-narcotics security assistance program. Mexican Foreign Ministrer Marcelo Ebrard bluntly expressed his frustration: “The Merida Initiative is dead. It doesn’t work…. We haven’t reduced either trafficking or drug abuse, so we have to do something else.”
In a new editorial, SAM Director Lauren Woods recommends 5 ways to achieve the “values-based security partnerships” sought by newly-confirmed Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Affairs Bonnie Jenkins: increasing transparency, identifying and communicating values, consulting Congress, avoiding counterproductive arms buildups, and leveraging civil society.
The National Institute for Public Policy released a report last week in which author David J. Trachtenberg argues that arms control treaties have not achieved the intended objectives nor had the expected normative impact.
A new report from Kathy Gannon for the Associated Press summarizes the waste and corruption that has impaired the effectiveness of nearly $100 billion of U.S. security assistance provided to Afghanistan over the last two decades. She writes that much of the provided funds has gone unmonitored resulting in corruption among Afghans and foreign contractors alike.
A report from the Dutch-based Transnational Institute found “a direct link between European arms exports and the forced displacement of at least 1.1 million people.” For example, Italian helicopter parts were exported to Turkey and later used in attacks in Syria, forcing thousands to flee the area.
Data Fact of the Week:
U.S. Security Assistance to Jordan, FY2000-FY2021
The graphic above shows Jordan’s annual aggregated U.S. security assistance package since FY2000, averaging more than $445 million every year.
A new SAM factsheet takes a deep dive into the U.S. security partnership with Jordan. Check out the full piece here.