Democracy in Arabia Issue no. 173 Spring 2005 After a long walk and many stories of Moses, Moabites, Edomites, and Nabataeans, my guide, Ahmed Amrin, took me for coffee in a small park. Tall, thorny and mangled trees, called sidr in Arabic, shaded the garden. Mr. Amrin and the café’s owner, Bassam Abu Samhadana, both came from Kerak. In the center of Jordan, Kerak was known for a magnificent crusader fortress that the Muslims had conquered centuries ago.