At the beginning, it was just an idea. An idea of an adventure that was closer to a dream than it was to reality. Can a small group of people who are less in number than the fingers of a hand, with zero financial resources, establish a center for political studies and play a pioneering role in providing “more accurate and deeper understanding” of the issues of Jordan and the Middle East? We did not hesitate to answer this question and carried out repetitive attempts to obtain the required approvals and “permits” until we achieved what we yearned for in late 1999.
We did not spend much time or effort to determine our priorities and programs because we simply work in a part of the world that has suffered a recession for more than half a century under the rule of tyrannical and corrupted “post Arab independence” states, governments, and regimes that failed to build “the Nation State.” A state for all citizens with no exceptions or discrimination, a state that recognizes the individual and collective rights of its components and preserves their basic freedoms, a state that works on deepening the political participation of its components, a state of human development in its various dimensions, and a state of social justice which became a slogan for all youth and public movements in various Arab countries.
In fact, establishing Al-Quds Center for Political Studies was not our first adventure. More than twenty years before that, our first uncompleted attempt began in Beirut until it was cut off by the Israeli invasion of Lebanon and the occupation of Beirut. Seven years after that, in Cyprus, we carried out another attempt that lasted for four years and had a good account of achievements until we landed once again in Amman to continue the journey of difficulties.
Al-Quds Center for Political Studies succeeded in enforcing its presence as a major player on the intellectual, political, and academic work field after it chose a middle stand between academia and the activities of political and social workers, acting as a bridge that connects both sides. Al-Quds center worked hard to enrich the public national debate with more ideas, suggestions, policies, and legislation drafts that quicken and deepen democratic transformation in our countries.
We are rather proud and relieved that Al-Quds Center for Political Studies has succeeded in occupying a prominent position on the Arab and regional map and is among the limited independent centers that lead the Arab scene because of its relationships and activities that exceed the local dimension and moved to the national/regional wider space. In this context, Al-Quds Center for Political Studies was opened in Beirut in 2012 to be a sister institution that helps expand the regional horizon of the center’s programs and activities.
The continuing success of the center is the fruit of the continuous efforts of the founders of the center, all the workers that joined the center’s staff, and the broader network of friends and collaborators each of whom has their own imprint in this journey. To all those, we present the most sincere greetings, appreciation, and loyalty. We also promise them to continue this pioneering journey of achievements, preserve the center’s credibility and independence, and improve our performance to conform to the confidence we were granted by our partners, allies, friends, and beneficiaries. We will always remain as you know us—the first to touch upon the most important issues regardless of their sensitivity and the most open to the various components of our peoples, societies, orientations, and currents, believing that diversity enriches our spiritual and material life and confident that we are capable of managing this diversity and using it until our peoples and societies achieve what they yearned for of objectives and aspirations.