By: Katie Lilley

Country Basics

The capital of Iraq is Baghdad. The flag of Iraq consists of three colors displayed horizontally in equal rows, as shown below. The Takbīr on the middle white band reads "Allahu Akbar" (Arabic expression meaning God is great) in Kufic script.


Iraq is located in the continent Asia, and the surrounding countries are Jordan, Syria, Turkey, Iran, Kuwait, and Saudi Arabia. Iraq is a series of broad, sandy plains. The Syrian Desert blankets the land in the extreme west. By the Persian Gulf it is marshy and usually flooded. Iraq has mountains in the North. Some of the major landforms in Iraq are the Ziggurat of Ur, the Iman Husayn Shrine, the Baghdadi Museum, and the Great Mosque of Samarra. Some of the major bodies of water are the Tigris River, the Euphrates River, the Shattas-Arab, the Diyala River, the Great Zab River, Lake Tharhar, Lake Habbahiyan, and the Persian Gulf. The Iraq War has left the environment with problems such as water shortage and unsanitary places.
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The type of government that Iraq has is a Parliamentary democracy (which is a form of limited government). The current leader is Fuad Masum, and him and all of the other leaders are chosen by citizens electing members of a legislature called a parliament. The rights of the citizens are to vote in a parliament.


Iraq is a rich nation, thanks to the oil. Iraq's main exports are crude oil (83.9%), crude materials (8%), and food and live animals (5%). The type of money that Iraq uses is Iraqi dinar. The life expectancy is 74.85 years, the birth rate is 31.45 births, the literacy rate is 79.7%, and the drinking water source is improved 86.6% and unimproved 14.6%.
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The traditional clothing in Iraq is for women to wear hijabs, but the modern clothing now is long pants and shirts with only half sleeves, they can dress as they like.The major languages are Arabic (official), Assyrian, Kurdish, and Armenian. The national anthem is called Mawtini (My Homeland). The main holiday is Republic Day, July 14 (1958). The main religion in Iraq is Muslim (99%), but there are traces of other religions too, such as Christian (0.8%) and other religions (0.2%). The popular dishes in Iraq are Kebab, Dolma, Biryani, and Masgoulf. Most of these dishes contain beef and rice. The most popular sport in Iraq is football, but other sports such as basketball, tennis, boxing, swimming, and kickboxing are played too.


The general weather conditions are desert like, with mild to cool winters and hot, dry summers. The average yearly rainfall is about 159.5 mm per year. The average yearly temperature is 39.83°C. Since it is an arid/semiarid climate, it is good land for subsistence and commercial farming and oil growth.
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Iraq was once part of Mesopotamia, for it embraces a large part of the alluvial plains of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers. Also, the dictatorship of Saddam Hussein collapsed on April 9th, 2003 after the U.S.A and British forces invaded the country.

Comparing and Contrasting

Food: Iraq and the USA both like beef in their meals. Also, the USA and Iraq both use a lot of flavor in their meals. But, in Iraq they also like a lot of yogurt, lamb, and rice in their meals. On the contrary, we eat fast food a lot.

Clothing: The USA and Iraq citizens both wear a shirt and pants, and we both wear shoes. Iraq women sometimes wear hijabs and we don't in the USA. Also, Iraq people wear hats to protect them from the sun but we don't need to wear hats.