The most important sector of the Iraq economy is Agriculture. The Iraqis invented a system of irrigation for their crops. Before the Persian Gulf War, Iraq imported about 70% of it’s food supplies at a amount of $1.1 billion. Iraq has a food rationing system. Each person is provided with only 1,300 calories and 6 grams of protein a day.Saddam Hussein was born in 1937. His family was poor and they live in Tikrit, Iraq. Hussein is a Sunni muslim. On July 16, 1979, he replaced Bakr as President and Chairman of the Revolutionary Command Council. Saddam thought of himself as the leader of all Arabians and he also pleaded for Arab solidarity. In recent years Saddam Hussein’s actions have affected and burdened the Iraqis with debt and caused there to be a very big shortage of food. Saddam murdered those who opposed him or any person he thought was going to overthrow him.
Ancient traditions of Iraq such as architecture, sculpture, painting, weaving and carpet making have continued on into modern day. Sculpture and painting are appreciated. A man named Jawad Salim was one of the most important painters and sculptors in Iraq. He studied in Paris, Rome, and London. In 1958, he was commissioned to make the monument to Liberty in Baghdad. He has also designed popular items such as book covers and jewelry.
A day in the life of an Iraqi consists of having breakfast around 7 A.M. possibly having pita bread (a circular puffy bread), cheese with dibis (date syrup), butter, eggs, or milk. Then all children between the ages of 6 and 12 are required to attend school. Children receive free education therefore parents do not have to pay for it. Secondary education starts at age 12 in 2 series of 3 years each. Boys are more likely to continue their education than girls are. Lunch can be stew of lamb, vegetables, tomatoes, lemons, or garlic with rice. Salad, bread, or fruit are often served with the main dish.
Gilgamesh is a type of god-man, he meets an uncivilized hunter named Enkidu. The two with fight but then become friends and go to explore the world together. Enkidu will displease the gods and is cursed with a disease that will result in death. Gilgamesh will then go in search of eternal life. He will meet the man who built a boat and survived a flood the was supposed to kill all humans. Gilgamesh supposedly found a plant at the bottom of the ocean that contained eternal life. He was on his way back to give the plant to Enkidu but fails when a snake steals the plant while Gilgamesh is sleeping. Gilgamesh is then left with the prospect of dying like a normal, everyday human.
`On the big day of an Iraqis Wedding the bride will be at her father’s house in her white gown. Her hands and feet will be filled with beautiful red henna. She will have her female guests iver to admire her clothing and the gifts her father gave her. The bride will wear golden jewelry as insurance in case her husband would happen to divorce her. Drums and pipers play as the music for the traditional dances. The Groom is led by the Islamic teacher to the bride’s house where the marriage contract is signed.
Most families are the ones who arrange marriages. Often the mother decides whom her son will marry. When married, the daughter will move to the husband’s family home. When a son is born it is a special joy because the son with stay home with the family and carry on the family traditions. Legally, muslims can have up to 4 wives at a time, but this is rare because of the expense.
The people from Iraq started using the wheel in transportation 5 thousand years ago. They are also the people who decided to have 60 minutes in a hour. Iraq were among the first people to live together in cities. They built forts and palaces, they even designed a hanging garden (one of the many wonders of the ancient world). Their capital was once the center of learning for the whole world.
Iraq has an enormous economic potential. Oil resources are one of the biggest in the world. For eight years Iraq and Iran fought each other in a war. Large numbers of Iraq people were killed and/or wounded. Hussein invading Kuwait and claiming it as Iraq territory brought the United Nations economic sanctions. It also brought multinational armies against Saddam and his country.
The ancient name for the territory of Iraq is “Mesopotamia” which means “The Land Between Two Rivers”. Iraq is larger than the state of California. It consists of 167,925 square miles. It shares boundaries to the east with Iran, north with Turkey, northwest with Syria, southwest with Jordan and Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and the waters of the Persian Gulf.
Iraq has had a constitution since 1968 that says the country is a democratic nation. Islam is the state religion. The economy is based on a socialism type government, which means government ownership. Any hate towards Saddam Hussein is prohibited and whoever criticizes him can be killed. Iraq is an oil-rich country with a sizeable education population. The country has enough resources to develop a strong economy. Hussein’s wars have not given people of Iraq the chance to enjoy all the benefits of their land. An estimated $2.7 million was spent in 1944 on the armed forces. Power, water, highways, bridges, and communication systems were very seriously damaged by bombs. A lot of the damages have been repaired since then. Iraq owes an immense amount of debt to others, they are about $200 billion in debt. In 1980, Iraq was the second largest supplier of crude oil. Petroleum accounted for 95% of the foreign money that Iraq earned.