"Things You Wouldn't Know If We Didn't Blog Intermittently."
In Jordan, at least, this is a choice. I have seen seen women in military uniform driving cars in Amman. I have been in a night club with Jordanian women drinking alcohol. AFAIC, Jordan is the only Middle eastern country in which I am comfortable. I was even able to purchase alcoholic drinks in a restaurant during Ramadan, albeit clandestinely. These are a people who live in the real world.
Stunning photo.Forget the politics.Forget the religiously oppressive tradition.Look at that photo!Its a work of art.
Egypt is a little like that, bigjohn. As a westerner, you can get alcohol at all the major hotels and some restaurants, and women have a choice of wearing the head covering (the hijab that covers just the hair and throat, not the burka) or not. Very few women are fully veiled (there's an ultra religious sect that is).