Thursday, 24 April 2008

Disneyland in Baghdad is really chilly news The Times Online brought today to war-devastated Iraqi people and especially the children: an American company will pour millions of dollars to build a massive American-style amusment park in downtown Baghdad.

The Los Angeles-based C3 holding company has been sold a 50-year lease on the site by the Mayor of Baghdad for an undisclosed sum,

Who knows may be this project will let Iraqis see another face for America instead of its military arsenal we see everyday since 2003 and the killings and devastation they have brought.

I hope that this idea will be achieved and never finds its way to the corruption reports which are overwhelmed Iraq over the past five years and....and...and....

Wednesday, 23 April 2008

Take it or leave it...

Iraq's top oil official on 22 April threatened oil majors, who are in negotiations with his war-torn country on deals to increase the country's oil output, that Iraq may abandon the deals if they fail to sign them by June, Spencer Swartz reports to Dow Jones Newswires.

Oil Minister Hussein al-Shahristani's latest threat is the first strong statement after many upbeat ones he and other oil officials used to state since these negotiations were declared in 2007. Officials predicted to sign these deals in March.

"Iraqi workers have already increased production by about 500,000 barrels a day over the past year and could continue adding capacity without the foreign companies, Shahristani said. However, he added, their know-how and technology would greatly facilitate the process of increasing production capacity there."

Do somthing...

Iraq's well known woman activist and lawmaker, Safia al-Suhailh, made today an appeal to the Iraqi government to act immediately to curb the killing of women in one of Baghdad's western neighborhoods by militant groups.

Although al-Suhail did not name these groups but residents told the UN IRINnews that Mahdi Army militiamen, the armed wing of Shiite radical cleric Muqtada al-Sadr were behind such killing.

"Over the past six months 15 women were killed in al-Salam neighbourhood for religious reasons or because they had criticized the militants, or because of their previous affiliation to the Baath Party [disbanded party of ousted President Saddam Hussein]," al-Suhail told IRIN.

Tuesday, 22 April 2008


Aha, what a brilliant idea is this.....Iraqi parliament mulls issuing a law banning imports of toy guns and fire works to protect children from developing aggressive behavior, Sinan Salaheddin reports to the Associated Press.

Samira al-Moussawi, head of the parliamentary committee on women and children said that her committee, which has drawn the draft bill, is planning to put it in front of the parliament on 23 April.

"The culture of violence has prevailed in our society and controlled the Iraqi family, and that has affected the culture of children," al-Moussawi said in her interview.

"It has become a habit among a majority of our children to take what they want by force and we want to change this culture," she added.

Wondering how many laws we need to protect the coming generations from this war impacts and is it only a matter of issuing laws....?

This is an example...

Iraq's self-ruled Kurdistan Regional Government has taken a fresh initiative with launching a new official Web Site for its Presidency Office. provides visitors with the latest news, press releases and speeches for its President Masoub Barzani in addition to a clear email addresses for him and other departments in his office.

This new Web Site will work in parallel to the official one which is already saw success in providing journalists and other visitors with up-to-date information.

As I hail this initiative, I'm really keen to see the Iraqi central government and its ministries to have their media offices to do such a step.

Thursday, 17 April 2008

Seatbelt ??? what about other problems???

As if our Mr. Prime Minister, Nouri al-Maliki, after "achieving victory on outlaws" in Basra and Baghdad thinks that law and security have been maintained and that Iraq "once insecure country" is now a normal one.

And for that he has ordered a law only implemented in normal countries: car drivers must wear seatbelt or face a 30,000 Iraqi dinar (about US$ 31).

It's fine and I'm not against it at all but this only works if our life conditions just like the ones in our neighboring countries at least.

I think the countless checkpoints and blast walls around Baghdad make it completely impossible to travel fast enough to cause accidents around the city.

When the government wants to maintain the law in streets, it first must impose it on its convoys and more importantly on the U.S. military and foreign security contractors ones who all show no respect to traffic rules and speed any way they want with sirens blaring and guns pointed.

So I advise my esteemed government to tackle the country's problems starting from the absent security to enable nearly 6 million Iraqis return to their homes and find solutions to our political and economic problems before imposing such laws.

Wednesday, 16 April 2008

Government Media Offices...

As a journalist works in Iraq, I do believe that the first thing the Iraqi statesman must do when he takes office is to set up a very professional media office by carefully picking up a spokesman who can actively get in touch with all media outlets who deal with the Iraqi story.

And through this spokesman, the governmental institution must get a very clear and rich Web Site where all the needed information (of course those are allowed to be published) are available for everyone such as press releases, reports, contacts to officials and so on.

And also, a weekly briefings must be held to help media outlets follow up with their achievements and future plans.

In my modest seven-year old experience in journalism with international media outlets, some of those Iraqi spokesmen and their offices are very very cooperative, try hard to keep media outlets updated with all their activities and spare no efforts to help them.

While others have become professionals in how keeping journalists in turmoil when they need anything: they rarely answer their phones and never call back later and their common pretext is " I'm in a meeting" or "I was busy with meetings".

An example for that, NO OFFENCE HERE, is the Oil Ministry Spokesman Mr. Assem Jihad who rarely helps journalists with Iraq's oil developments which I believe its the most important story now in Iraq.

I do believe that amid the huge oil developments in Iraq, Iraqi Oil Ministry must hold such weekly briefings to speak about, for examples, negotiations with majors to develop oil fields and other future plans.

Iraqi Oil Minister Hussein al-Shahristani only appears before media when he leaves Iraq to take part in conferences and never invites journalists to his ministry.

I call on everybody not to be sensitive with this but I do believe that these spokesmen and media offices are the real forefront of their institutions.