About 2,500 people demonstrated against the ousting of the “parliament of shame” in the largest city of Jordan over an alleged corruption case involving a major gambling casino. Moreover, more than 1,000 Jordanians participated in a massive demonstration organized by the main al-Hamma Front in Amman, calling for the downfall of the government and an end to the rule of the Shabab al-Daula family. The largest contingent of the opposition gathered outside the main royal palace, waving the flag of Syria and chanting slogans against the regime. The king of Jordan is currently in Washington, D.C., attending meetings with his Russian and Chinese counterparts in what is known as the tripartite talks. However, many of those participating in the demonstrations expressed an openness to rule by the people, if the demands of the large crowd are met.
Jordan has one of the most liberal stances on gambling in the Arab World. It allows people to operate video poker and online casinos, as well as offering a system of legalized sports betting. Although the main Islamic religious authorities have condemned gambling in general, they have been much less hostile towards casinos than other Arab nations that allow them. Despite this, Jordan’s conservative leadership has refused to acknowledge the legitimacy of the ruling royals in charge of the country. Recently, a top advisor to the King of Jordan openly stated that there would be no changes to the kingdom’s long-term economic relationship with the United States. A similar stance was taken by the current Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi as well as the current ruler of Qatar.
Gambling is not limited to popular international casinos such as the ones in London, Macao or Las Vegas. Many countries, such asnia, Turkey, India and some African countries, have developed successful and progressive gambling establishments. The gaming establishment in Turkey for example is considered to be one of the most profitable in the world. The reason for this is not difficult to determine. In Turkey casinos are allowed to have the same image as other gambling establishments and many Turkish men prefer to gamble indoors rather than gamble out doors. As a result, Turkey is emerging as one of the biggest sources of short-term investments and is rapidly turning into one of the world’s leading gambling centers.
Casino gambling in the Arab world has, of course, also developed in response to local concerns over the social impact of large numbers of people playing a single game. In certain countries like Morocco, a passive majority of the population are demanding that the country limit its total number of casino games because many local men feel that the gaming experience is diminishing as the gaming population increases. Gamblers in other Arab countries are also worried about the effect that gambling will have on family values and traditional customs. For instance, in Abu Dhabi and Dubai several local businessmen have made controversial statements against video poker machines, claiming that they destroy the family values in their area.
While many people do worry that the rapid spread of gambling will negatively affect society in general, there is little evidence to suggest that this is true. In many European countries gambling is highly regulated and heavily policed and these countries have some of the lowest rates of reported gambling related crimes anywhere in the world. In fact, many countries have specific laws encouraging responsible gaming. In the United States for example, both the state of New Jersey and the State of New York to impose tough penalties on individuals found to be involved in the gaming industry. Gambling is also limited in the United Kingdom because of concerns that it will damage local economies and culture.
On the whole, it can be said that it is simply not possible to prevent all gambling from taking place. However, there is no doubt that many governments around the world are seeing gambling as an important source of revenue and are working hard to control it. Given this situation, it can be seen that most gamblers on the whole support government attempts to limit the amount of gambling taking place.