In 2008, U.S. and Iraqi forces defeated an uprising in Sadr City, a district of Baghdad with ~2.4 million residents. Coalition forces’ success in this battle helped consolidate the Government of Iraq’s authority, contributing significantly to the attainment of contemporary U.S. operational objectives in Iraq. U.S. forces’ conduct of the battle illustrates a new paradigm for urban combat and indicates capabilities the Army will need in the future.
As Karen Malpede points out in her introduction to Acts of War, tragedy "arose as a complement to, perhaps also as an antidote to, war." The greatest of the early playwrights wrote from experience—Aeschylus and Sophocles were generals in the Athenian army, and Euripides was a combat veteran. Electronic media reports war instantly, but the stage provides an unrivaled venue for facing the horror of armed conflict on a human scale.This timely anthology of plays by American and British writers bears witness to the realities of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan for combatants and civilians alike and asks what it means to be a citizen in a democracy at war.
From violence on the battlefield and in the cells of Guantanamo to the toll exacted on the homefront, the seven plays collected by Malpede, Messina, and Shuman explore in depth the costs of war. Sometimes with humor or erotic charge, always with compassion and surprising insight, these contemporary plays return to the theater a necessary social edge.
Karen Malpede’s introduction sets the plays in the broader contexts of theater’s roots and recent history, while award-winning journalist and author Chris Hedges provides a foreword.
Essays that explore the rich engagement of the Talmud with its cultural world
The Babylonian Talmud (Bavli), the great compilation of Jewish law edited in the late Sasanian era (sixth–seventh century CE), also incorporates a great deal of aggada, that is, nonlegal material, including interpretations of the Bible, stories, folk sayings, and prayers. The Talmud’s aggadic traditions often echo conversations with the surrounding cultures of the Persians, Eastern Christians, Manichaeans, Mandaeans, and the ancient Babylonians, and others. The essays in this volume analyze Bavli aggada to reveal this rich engagement of the Talmud with its cultural world.
A detailed analysis of the different conceptions of martyrdom in the Talmud as opposed to the Eastern Christian martyr accounts
Illustration of the complex ways rabbinic Judaism absorbed Christian and Zoroastrian theological ideas
Demonstration of the presence of Persian-Zoroastrian royal and mythological motifs in talmudic sources
The alluvial lowlands of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers in southern Mesopotamia are widely known as the “cradle of civilization,” owing to the scale of the processes of urbanization that took place in the area by the second half of the fourth millennium BCE.
In Ancient Mesopotamia at the Dawn of Civilization, Guillermo Algaze draws on the work of modern economic geographers to explore how the unique river-based ecology and geography of the Tigris-Euphrates alluvium affected the development of urban civilization in southern Mesopotamia. He argues that these natural conditions granted southern polities significant competitive advantages over their landlocked rivals elsewhere in Southwest Asia, most importantly the ability to easily transport commodities. In due course, this resulted in increased trade and economic activity and higher population densities in the south than were possible elsewhere. As southern polities grew in scale and complexity throughout the fourth millennium, revolutionary new forms of labor organization and record keeping were created, and it is these socially created innovations, Algaze argues, that ultimately account for why fully developed city-states emerged earlier in southern Mesopotamia than elsewhere in Southwest Asia or the world.
"This splendid work of scholarship . . . sums up with economy and power all that the written record so far deciphered has to tell about the ancient and complementary civilizations of Babylon and Assyria."—Edward B. Garside, New York Times Book Review
Ancient Mesopotamia—the area now called Iraq—has received less attention than ancient Egypt and other long-extinct and more spectacular civilizations. But numerous small clay tablets buried in the desert soil for thousands of years make it possible for us to know more about the people of ancient Mesopotamia than any other land in the early Near East.
Professor Oppenheim, who studied these tablets for more than thirty years, used his intimate knowledge of long-dead languages to put together a distinctively personal picture of the Mesopotamians of some three thousand years ago. Following Oppenheim's death, Erica Reiner used the author's outline to complete the revisions he had begun.
"To any serious student of Mesopotamian civilization, this is one of the most valuable books ever written."—Leonard Cottrell, Book Week
"Leo Oppenheim has made a bold, brave, pioneering attempt to present a synthesis of the vast mass of philological and archaeological data that have accumulated over the past hundred years in the field of Assyriological research."—Samuel Noah Kramer, Archaeology
A. Leo Oppenheim, one of the most distinguished Assyriologists of our time, was editor in charge of the Assyrian Dictionary of the Oriental Institute and John A. Wilson Professor of Oriental Studies at the University of Chicago.
Ancient Perspectives encompasses a vast arc of space and time—Western Asia to North Africa and Europe from the third millennium BCE to the fifth century CE—to explore mapmaking and worldviews in the ancient civilizations of Mesopotamia, Egypt, Greece, and Rome. In each society, maps served as critical economic, political, and personal tools, but there was little consistency in how and why they were made. Much like today, maps in antiquity meant very different things to different people.
Ancient Perspectives presents an ambitious, fresh overview of cartography and its uses. The seven chapters range from broad-based analyses of mapping in Mesopotamia and Egypt to a close focus on Ptolemy’s ideas for drawing a world map based on the theories of his Greek predecessors at Alexandria. The remarkable accuracy of Mesopotamian city-plans is revealed, as is the creation of maps by Romans to support the proud claim that their emperor’s rule was global in its reach. By probing the instruments and techniques of both Greek and Roman surveyors, one chapter seeks to uncover how their extraordinary planning of roads, aqueducts, and tunnels was achieved.
Even though none of these civilizations devised the means to measure time or distance with precision, they still conceptualized their surroundings, natural and man-made, near and far, and felt the urge to record them by inventive means that this absorbing volume reinterprets and compares.
The troubled transition to democracy in Iraq has led many to wonder how the country’s Shi’ites and Sunnis will balance their religious beliefs with political pressures. Inthis volume, historian Juan R. I. Cole explores clerical participation within Iraq's emerging democracy, including that of the Da’wa Party, the al-Sadr Movement, and the Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution. Ideal for students and scholars of foreign affairs, Cole’s thought-provoking analysis will be important reading for anyone concerned about the future of Iraq.
Reuven Snir Harvard University Press, 2013 Library of Congress PJ8047.B25B34 2013 | Dewey Decimal 892.710083585675
Baghdad: The City in Verse captures the essence of life lived in one of the world's enduring metropolises. This unusual anthology offers original translations of 170 Arabic poems from Bedouin, Muslim, Christian, Kurdish, and Jewish poets--most for the first time in English--from Baghdad's founding in the eighth century to the present day.
"David Enders has a stunning independent streak and the courage to trust his own perceptions as he reports from outside the bubble Americans have created for themselves in Iraq."
---Joe Sacco, author of Safe Area Gorazde
"Baghdad Bulletin takes us where mainstream news accounts do not go. Disrupting the easy cliché s that dominate U.S. journalism, Enders blows away the media fog of war. The result is a book that challenges Americans to see through double speak and reconsider the warfare being conducted in their names."
---Norman Solomon, author of War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death
"Journalism at its finest and on a shoestring to boot. David Enders shows that courage and honesty can outshine big-budget mainstream media. Wry but self-critical, Baghdad Bulletin tells a story that a few of us experienced but every journalist, nay every citizen, should read."
---Pratap Chatterjee, Managing Editor and Project Director, CorpWatch
"Young and tenacious, Dave Enders went, saw, and wrote it down. Here it is-a well-informed and detailed tale of Iraq's decline under American rule. Baghdad Bulletin offers tragic politics, wacky people, and keen insights about what really matters on the ground in Iraq."
"I wrote my first piece for Baghdad Bulletin after visiting the mass graves at Al-Hilla in 2003. The Baghdad Bulletin was essential reading in the first few months after the end of the war. I handed that particular copy to Prime Minister Tony Blair. I am only sorry that I cannot read it anymore. David Enders and his team were brave, enterprising, and idealistic."
---Rt. Hon. Ann Clwyd, member of the British Parliament
Baghdad Bulletin is a street-level account of the war and turbulent postwar period as seen through the eyes of the young independent journalist David Enders. The book recounts Enders's story of his decision to go to Iraq, where he opened the only English-language newspaper completely written, printed, and distributed there during the war.
Young, courageous, and anti-authoritarian, Enders is the first reporter to cover the war as experienced by ordinary Iraqis. Deprived of the press credentials that gave his embedded colleagues access to press conferences and officially sanitized information, Enders tells the story of a different war, outside the Green Zone. It is a story in which the struggle of everyday life is interspersed with moments of sheer terror and bizarre absurdity: wired American troops train their guns on terrified civilians; Iraqi musicians prepare a recital for Coalition officials who never show; traveling clowns wreak havoc in a Baghdad police station.
Orphans and intellectuals, activists and insurgents: Baghdad Bulletin depicts the unseen complexity of Iraqi society and gives us a powerful glimpse of a new kind of warfare, one that coexists with-and sometimes tragically veers into-the everyday rhythms of life.
Freya Stark Northwestern University Press, 1996 Library of Congress DS79.9.B25S73 1996 | Dewey Decimal 956.747
In the fall of 1928, thirty-five year-old Freya Stark set out on her first journey to the Middle East. She spent most of the next four years in Iraq and Persia, visiting ancient and medieval sites, and traveling alone through some of the wilder corners of the region.
A comprehensive introduction to Iraqi Arabic for beginners (with Iraqi-English and English-Iraqi glossaries) this is the language spoken by Muslim Baghdad residents, transcribed and not in Arabic script. It does not assume prior knowledge of Arabic. A Basic Course in Iraqi Arabic with MP3 Audio Files contains ten chapters of phonology to explain the sounds, and thirty more covering grammar and vocabulary. The phonology chapters all contain extensive drills. The grammar chapters start with a dialogue or brief narrative, then explain new vocabulary and points of grammar, and conclude with drills. The book is usefully enhanced with a bound-in CD with audio MP3 files to accompany the text and drills.
Building the capacity of Afghan special operations forces (SOF) is a key goal of the United States and its coalition partners. This report summarizes key partnering practices and presents findings from SOF partnership case studies in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Colombia. The goal is to identify best practices to benefit the development of Afghan SOF, as well as for special operations partnerships beyond Afghanistan.
The Church in Iraq
Fernando Cardinal Filoni Catholic University of America Press, 2017 Library of Congress BX1625.F5513 2017 | Dewey Decimal 282.567
The persecution of the church in Iraq is one of the great tragedies of the twenty-first century. In this short, yet sweeping account, Cardinal Filoni, the former Papal Nuncio to Iraq, shows us the people and the faith in the land of Abraham and Babylon, a region that has been home to Persians, Parthians, Byzantines, Mongols, Ottomans, and more. This is the compelling and rich history of the Christian communities in a land that was once the frontier between Rome and Persia, for centuries the crossroads of East and West for armies of invaders and merchants, and the cradle of all human civilization. Its unique cultural legacy has, in the past few years, been all but obliterated.
The Church in Iraq is both a diligent record and loving testimonial to a community that is struggling desperately to exist. Filoni guides the reader through almost two thousand years of history, telling the story of a people who trace their faith back to the Apostle Thomas. The diversity of peoples and churches is brought deftly into focus through the lens of their interactions with the papacy, but The Church in Iraq does not shy away from discussing the local political, ethnic, and theological tensions that have resulted in centuries of communion and schism. Never losing his focus on the people to whom this book is so clearly dedicated, Cardinal Filoni has produced a personal and engaging history of the relationship between Rome and the Eastern Churches. This book has much to teach its reader about the church in the near East. Perhaps its most brutal lesson is the ease with which such a depth of history and culture can be wiped away in a few short decades.
"Deployed is an important and deeply moving book. Here, in this story, the heroic tradition of the American citizen-soldier lives on."
---Andrew J. Bacevich, Professor, Boston University, and author of The New American Militarism: How Americans Are Seduced by War
"Whatever your feelings about Iraq, Deployed is an important and compelling work that illuminates the real human cost of the war, and gives voice to those compelled to fight it."
---Ken Wells, Senior Editor, Condé Nast Portfolio
"Currently, there are few to no books dealing with the sociology of Iraq, and even fewer have empirical data on the experiences of American soldiers. More important, this work provides a strong and needed voice for soldiers---their words are compelling, rich, and moving."
---Morten Ender, Professor of Sociology, United States Military Academy at West Point
"This is a unique book that weaves historical, ethnographic, and organizational approaches for a study of Iraq-War military reservists. . . . the authors' findings challenge the pervading wisdom on reservists' motivations for service; the chemistry between family, reserve duty, and relations with regular military; and the effect that service in Iraq had on them."
---Jerry Lembcke, Associate Professor of Sociology, Holy Cross College
What is it like to be one of the citizen-soldiers summoned to duty in Iraq and Afghanistan? The events of 9/11 were a call to arms for many reservists, as shock, anger, and fear propelled large numbers to volunteer for the opportunity to serve their country in the Middle East. Even the most patriotic, however, had not expected that the wars would last so long or that the Army Reserve would supply so much of the manpower.
Using the soldiers' own voices, Deployed draws upon the life stories of members of an Army Reserve MP Company, who were called to extraordinary service after September 11. The book explores how and why they joined the Army Reserve, how they dealt with the seismic changes in their lives during and after deployment, the evolution of their relationships inside and outside their military unit, and their perspectives on the U.S. Army.
Musheno and Ross uncover five pathways that led these citizens to join the reserves, showing how basic needs and cultural idioms combined to stimulate enlistments. Whatever path led to enlistment, the authors find that citizen-soldiers fall into three distinct categories: adaptive reservists who adjust quickly to the huge changes in their lives abroad and at home, struggling reservists whose troubles are more a product of homegrown circumstances than experiences specific to serving in a war zone, and reservists who are dismissive of military life while they live it and oppose the war even as they fight it. Perhaps most important, Deployed challenges the prevailing stereotype of returning soldiers as war-damaged citizens.
Jacket photograph: AP Photo/Hutchinson News, Travis Morisse.
Charles Townshend Harvard University Press, 2011 Library of Congress D568.5.T68 2011 | Dewey Decimal 940.423
Modern Iraq was created deliberately by the British over the seven years following their first invasion in 1914. Charles Townshend provides an informative and compelling explanation of that conquest and examines how an initially cautious strategic invasion by British forces led to imperial expansion on a vast scale.
Desert Mementos is a collection of loosely connected short stories set during the early stages of the Iraq War (2004 and 2005). The stories rotate from battles with insurgents and the drudgery of the war machine in Iraq to Nevada, where characters are either preparing for war, escaping it during their leave, or returning home having seen what they’ve seen.
Cage captures similarities in the respective desert landscapes of both Iraq and Nevada, but it is not just a study in contrasting landscapes. The inter-connected stories explore similarities and differences in human needs from the perspectives of vastly different cultures. Specifically, the stories deftly capture the overlap in the respective desert landscapes of each region, the contrasting cultures and worldviews, and the common need for hope. Taken together, the stories represent the arc of a year-long deployment by young soldiers. Cage’s stories are bound together by the soldier’s searing experiences in the desert, bookended by leaving and returning home to Nevada, which in many ways can be just as disorienting as patrolling the Iraq desert.
A Dictionary of Iraqi Arabic: English-Arabic, Arabic-English
English-Arabic edited by B.E. Clarity, Karl Stowasser, and Ronald G. Wolfe. Arabic-English edited by D.R. Woodhead and Wayne Beene. Foreword by Ronald G. Wolfe Georgetown University Press, 2003 Library of Congress PJ6826.D53 2003 | Dewey Decimal 492.7321
Originally offered in two separate volumes, A Dictionary of Iraqi Arabic, a staple of Georgetown University Press's world-renowned Arabic language program, now handily provides both the English to Arabic and Arabic to English texts in one volume. Designed for an English speaker learning Arabic, this is a key reference for anyone learning the colloquial speech of Iraq as spoken by educated people in Baghdad. Using romanized transliteration and transcription rather than the Arabic alphabet, it is further enhanced in most cases by having sentences to illustrate how individual word entries are used in context, reinforcing the user's acquisition of colloquial Iraqi.
The first book in English on the founder of Arabic linguistic theory, this interdisciplinary collection explores the contributions to Arabic intellectual history of al-Khalil ibn Ahmad, (d. A.H. 175/A.D. 791).
Al-Khalil was distinguished in his own time as a lexicographer, phonologist, grammarian, educator and musicologist. In the Arab world, his stature is almost legendary, although information on his life, his works and his achievements is fragmented. He is remembered principally for two achievements: the creation of the first dictionary of the Arabic language (Kitab al-'ayn, "The Book of 'ayn"), and discovery of the rule-governed metrical systems used in pre-Islamic Arabic poetry. His biographers also cite publications on musical theory and have preserved fragments of his poetry. In addition to these achievements, he was also the teacher of the medieval Islamic world's most distinguished authority on Arabic grammar, Sibawayh.
Conceived as a tribute to al-Khalil’s influence on Arabic language sciences, this book provides a new and broader perspective on al-Khalil’s talents, character, and fields of interest. It should be of interest to Arabic linguists, medievalists, historians of linguistics, theoretical linguists, historians of science and scholars of medieval Arab intellectual history.
Between 1969 and 1980, Soviet archaeologists conducted excavations of Mesopotamian villages occupied from pre-agricultural times through the beginnings of early civilization. This volume brings together translations of Russian articles along with new work.
The most up-to-date sourcebook on warfare in the ancient Near East
Fighting for the King and the Gods provides an introduction to the topic of war and the variety of texts concerning many aspects of warfare in the ancient Near East. These texts illustrate various viewpoints of war and show how warfare was an integral part of life. Trimm examines not only the victors and the famous battles, but also the hardship that war brought to many. While several of these texts treated here are well known (i.e., Ramses II's battle against the Hittites at Qadesh), others are known only to specialists. This work will allow a broader audience to access and appreciate these important texts as they relate to the history and ideology of warfare.
References to recent secondary literature for further study
Early Greek and Chinese illustrative texts for comparisons with other cultures
The Flora of Iraq is the only comprehensive reference for this region in the Middle East. It enables anyone documenting, studying, or managing Iraq’s vast and rich flora to identify the vascular cryptograms and flowering plants. In addition to detailed taxonomic information, it includes general biological and economic data, as well as notes on vernacular names. As this collection nears completion, it fills a major gap in the floral knowledge of Iraq.
Plant families included in Volume 5, Part 2 are Lythraceae, Onagraceae, Haloragaceae, Gentianaceae, Menyanthaceae, Primulaceae, Plumbaginaceae, Plantaginaceae, Crassulaceae, Saxifragaceae, Vahliaceae, Umbelliferae, Valerianaceae, Dipsaceae, and Campanulaceae.
Drawing from 140 recently declassified documents, this report comprehensively examines the organization, territorial designs, management, personnel policies, and finances of the Islamic State of Iraq (ISI) and al-Qa‘ida in Iraq. Analysis of the Islamic State predecessor groups is more than a historical recounting. It provides significant understanding of how ISI evolved into the present-day Islamic State and how to combat the group.
The recent reopening of Iraq’s National Museum attracted worldwide attention, underscoring the country’s dual image as both the cradle of civilization and a contemporary geopolitical battleground. A sweeping account of the rich history that has played out between these chronological poles, From Mesopotamia to Iraq looks back through 10,000 years of the region’s deeply significant yet increasingly overshadowed past.
Hans J. Nissen and Peter Heine begin by explaining how ancient Mesopotamian inventions—including urban society, a system of writing, and mathematical texts that anticipated Pythagoras—profoundly influenced the course of human history. These towering innovations, they go on to reveal, have sometimes obscured the major role Mesopotamia continued to play on the world stage. Alexander the Great, for example, was fascinated by Babylon and eventually died there. Seventh-century Muslim armies made the region one of their first conquests outside the Arabian peninsula. And the Arab caliphs who ruled for centuries after the invasion built the magnificent city of Baghdad, attracting legions of artists and scientists. Tracing the evolution of this vibrant country into a contested part of the Ottoman Empire, a twentieth-century British colony, a republic ruled by Saddam Hussein, and the democracy it has become, Nissen and Heine repair the fragmented image of Iraq that has come to dominate our collective imagination.
In hardly any other continuously inhabited part of the globe can we chart such developments in politics, economy, and culture across so extended a period of time. By doing just that, the authors illuminate nothing less than the forces that have made the world what it is today.
David Ryan examines the broad contexts of US foreign policy and the lingering aftermath of the Vietnam War that shaped the opportunistic framing of 9/11 and paved the way for the long-held neo-conservative desire for regime change and war in Iraq.
He explores the construction of the cultural framework for war following 9/11, the legitimacy of military force in Afghanistan, the rise of anti-Americanism, within the broader contexts of the struggle over legitimacy, identity and leadership.
Turning the "clash of civilizations" thesis on its head, Ryan presents a careful analysis of the evolution of US foreign policy and its engagement with Iraq through the 1980s. While 9/11 provided the opportunity, the post-Vietnam context provides a more pertinent framework for this reflection on the Gulf War, the Iraq War and the strategic implications for US foreign policy.
The Georgetown Dictionary of Iraqi Arabic is a modernized, up-to-date dialectal Arabic language resource that promotes successful daily communication with native Arabic speakers. Students, teachers, and scholars of Arabic will welcome this dramatically overhauled edition of one of the only Arabic dialect dictionaries of its kind—establishing a new standard in Arabic reference.
The dictionary represents a new generation of Arabic language reference materials designed to help English speakers gain proficiency in colloquial Arabic. Thoroughly updated, expanded, and enhanced, this dictionary supersedes the seminal Iraqi dictionaries originally published by Georgetown University Press in the 1960s and then reissued in the early 2000s.
Created in cooperation with Georgetown University Press and the Linguistic Data Consortium (LDC) of the University of Pennsylvania, this new dictionary draws from the LDC’s extensive lexical database of colloquial Iraqi, and includes more than a thirty percent increase in terms for contemporary speech than found in the original dictionaries.
This comprehensive reference focuses on conversation, emphasizing the colloquial speech of educated residents of Baghdad. The dictionary assumes familiarity with the Arabic alphabet, the standard organization of Arabic dictionaries along the triconsonantal root system, and the formation of Arabic verb forms.
• Approximately 17,500 Iraqi Arabic entries
• Approximately 10,750 English-to-Iraqi entries
• An increase of more than 30 percent in terms that reflect current vocabulary and usage
• Provides conventional Arabic script for main entries, and organized by root, as standard for Arabic dictionaries
• Employs International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) for all terms to demonstrate correct pronunciation
• Offers extensive example sentences to illustrate how the Iraqi words are used
• Indicates relevant parts of speech for each Iraqi entry and subentry
From October 2006 to December 2007, Daniel A. Sjursen—then a U.S. Army lieutenant—led a light scout platoon across Baghdad. The experiences of Ghost Rider platoon provide a soldier’s-eye view of the incredible complexities of warfare, peacekeeping, and counterinsurgency in one of the world’s most ancient cities. Sjursen reflects broadly and critically on the prevailing narrative of the surge as savior of America’s longest war, on the overall military strategy in Iraq, and on U.S. relations with ordinary Iraqis. At a time when just a handful of U.S. senators and representatives have a family member in combat, Sjursen also writes movingly on questions of America’s patterns of national service. Who now serves and why? What connection does America’s professional army have to the broader society and culture? What is the price we pay for abandoning the model of the citizen soldier? With the bloody emergence of ISIS in 2014, Iraq and its beleaguered, battle-scarred people are again much in the news. Unlike other books on the U.S. war in Iraq, Ghost Riders of Baghdad is part battlefield chronicle, part critique of American military strategy and policy, and part appreciation of Iraq and its people. At once a military memoir, history, and cultural commentary, Ghost Riders of Bahdad delivers a compelling story and a deep appreciation of both those who serve and the civilians they strive to protect. Sjursen provides a riveting addition to our understanding of modern warfare and its human costs.
Conventional wisdom holds that the Bush administration was able to convince the American public to support a war in Iraq on the basis of specious claims and a shifting rationale because Democratic politicians decided not to voice opposition and the press simply failed to do its job.
Drawing on the most comprehensive survey of public reactions to the war, Stanley Feldman, Leonie Huddy, and George E. Marcus revisit this critical period and come back with a very different story. Polling data from that critical period shows that the Bush administration’s carefully orchestrated campaign not only failed to raise Republican support for the war but, surprisingly, led Democrats and political independents to increasingly oppose the war at odds with most prominent Democratic leaders. More importantly, the research shows that what constitutes the news matters. People who read the newspaper were more likely to reject the claims coming out of Washington because they were exposed to the sort of high-quality investigative journalism still being written at traditional newspapers. That was not the case for those who got their news from television. Making a case for the crucial role of a press that lives up to the best norms and practices of print journalism, the book lays bare what is at stake for the functioning of democracy—especially in times of crisis—as newspapers increasingly become an endangered species.
Winner, 2007 Chicago Book Clinic Crystal Book Award for Excellence in Design
As topical as today's newspaper headlines, these rich monologues bring to life nine distinct Iraqi women whose very different stories convey the complex and harrowing reality of being female in modern-day Iraq. Their monologues quickly become a series of overlapping conversations leading to a breakdown in communication as the chaos of Iraq intensifies. Layal is a sexy and impulsive painter favored by Saddam's regime, breezily bohemian one minute and defensive the next; another woman mourns the death of her family in a 1991 bunker, and another--a blond American of Iraqi descent--painfully recalls a telephone conversation with Baghdad relatives on the eve of the U. S. invasion. Other characters decry the savagery of Saddam Hussein in terrifying detail and express an ambivalent relief at the American presence; still others--like a Bedouin woman searching for love--transcend politics.
The title comes from the teachings of the seventh-century imam Ali ibn Abu Talib: "God created sexual desire in ten parts; then he gave nine parts to women and one part to men." Heather Raffo's monologues weave these nine parts into a finely textured, brilliantly colorful tapestry of feminine longing in dire times. This compassionate and heart-breaking work will forever change your view of Iraqi women and the people of the Middle East.
Combining action, violence, and deeply conflicted emotions, war has always been a topic made for the big screen. In The Hollywood War Film, Daniel Binns considers how war has been depicted throughout the history of cinema. Looking at depictions of both World Wars, the Vietnam War, and the major conflicts in the Middle East, Binns reflects on representations of war and conflict, revealing how Hollywood has made the war film not just a genre, but a dynamic cultural phenomenon.
Looking closely at films such as All Quiet on the Western Front, Full Metal Jacket, and The Hurt Locker, Binns reveals the commonalities in Hollywood films despite the distinct conflicts and eras they represent, and he shows how contemporary war films closely echo earlier films in their nationalistic and idealistic depictions. Offering a trenchant analysis of some of the most important war films from the past century, this book will be of interest to anyone who has been captivated by how film has dealt with one of humanity’s most difficult, but far too common, realities.
'Honor' is used as a justification for violence perpetrated against women and girls considered to have violated social taboos related to sexual behavior. Several ‘honor’-based murders of Kurdish women, such as Fadime Sahindal, Banaz Mahmod and Du’a Khalil Aswad, and campaigns against 'honor'-based violence by Kurdish feminists have drawn international attention to this phenomenon within Kurdish communities.
Honor and the Political Economy of Marriage provides a description of ‘honor’-based violence that focuses upon the structure of the family rather than the perpetrator’s culture. The author, Joanne Payton, argues that within societies primarily organized by familial and marital connections, women’s ‘honor’ is a form of symbolic capital within a ‘political economy’ in which marriage organizes intergroup connections.
Drawing on statistical analysis of original data contextualized with historical and anthropological readings, Payton explores forms of marriage and their relationship to ‘honor’, sketching changing norms around the familial control of women from agrarian/pastoral roots to the contemporary era.
In 2015, the Islamic State released a video of men smashing sculptures in Iraq’s Mosul Museum as part of a mission to cleanse the world of idolatry. This book unpacks three key facets of that event: the status and power of images, the political importance of museums, and the efficacy of videos in furthering an ideological agenda through the internet.
Beginning with the Islamic State’s claim that the smashed objects were idols of the “age of ignorance,” Aaron Tugendhaft questions whether there can be any political life without idolatry. He then explores the various roles Mesopotamian sculpture has played in European imperial competition, the development of artistic modernism, and the formation of Iraqi national identity, showing how this history reverberates in the choice of the Mosul Museum as performance stage. Finally, he compares the Islamic State’s production of images to the ways in which images circulated in ancient Assyria and asks how digitization has transformed politics in the age of social media. An elegant and accessibly written introduction to the complexities of such events, The Idols of ISIS is ideal for students and readers seeking a richer cultural perspective than the media usually provides.
From World War II to the war in Iraq, periods of international conflict seem like unique moments in U.S. political history—but when it comes to public opinion, they are not. To make this groundbreaking revelation, In Time of War explodes conventional wisdom about American reactions to World War II, as well as the more recent conflicts in Korea, Vietnam, the Gulf, Afghanistan, and Iraq. Adam Berinsky argues that public response to these crises has been shaped less by their defining characteristics—such as what they cost in lives and resources—than by the same political interests and group affiliations that influence our ideas about domestic issues.
With the help of World War II–era survey data that had gone virtually untouched for the past sixty years, Berinsky begins by disproving the myth of “the good war” that Americans all fell in line to support after the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor. The attack, he reveals, did not significantly alter public opinion but merely punctuated interventionist sentiment that had already risen in response to the ways that political leaders at home had framed the fighting abroad. Weaving his findings into the first general theory of the factors that shape American wartime opinion, Berinsky also sheds new light on our reactions to other crises. He shows, for example, that our attitudes toward restricted civil liberties during Vietnam and after 9/11 stemmed from the same kinds of judgments we make during times of peace.
With Iraq and Afghanistan now competing for attention with urgent issues within the United States, In Time of War offers a timely reminder of the full extent to which foreign and domestic politics profoundly influence—and ultimately illuminate—each other.
“American success or failure in Iraq may well depend on whether the Iraqis like American soldiers or not.”
The U.S. military could certainly have used that bit of wisdom in 2003, as violence began to eclipse the Iraq War’s early successes. Ironically, had the Army only looked in its own archives, they would have found it—that piece of advice is from a manual the U.S. War Department handed out to American servicemen posted in Iraq back in 1943.
The advice in Instructions for American Servicemen in Iraq during World War II,presented here in a new facsimile edition, retains a surprising, even haunting, relevance in light of today’s muddled efforts to win Iraqi hearts and minds. Designed to help American soldiers understand and cope with what was at the time an utterly unfamiliar culture—the manual explains how to pronounce the word Iraq, for instance—this brief, accessible handbook mixes do-and-don’t-style tips (“Always respect the Moslem women.” “Talk Arabic if you can to the people. No matter how badly you do it, they will like it.”) with general observations on Iraqi history and society. The book’s overall message still rings true—dramatically so—more than sixty years later: treat an Iraqi and his family with honor and respect, and you will have a strong ally; treat him with disrespect and you will create an unyielding enemy.
With a foreword by Lieutenant Colonel John A. Nagl reflecting on the manual’s continuing applicability—and lamenting that it was unknown at the start of the invasion—this new edition of Instructions for American Servicemen in Iraq will be essential reading for anyone who cares about the future of Iraq and the fate of the American soldiers serving there.
The economic sanctions imposed on Iraq from 1990 to 2003 were the most comprehensive and devastating of any established in the name of international governance. The sanctions, coupled with the bombing campaign of 1991, brought about the near collapse of Iraq’s infrastructure and profoundly compromised basic conditions necessary to sustain life.
In a sharp indictment of U.S. policy, Joy Gordon examines the key role the nation played in shaping the sanctions, whose harsh strictures resulted in part from U.S. definitions of “dual use” and “weapons of mass destruction,” and claims that everything from water pipes to laundry detergent to child vaccines could produce weapons. Drawing on internal UN documents, confidential minutes of closed meetings, and interviews with foreign diplomats and U.S. officials, Gordon details how the United States not only prevented critical humanitarian goods from entering Iraq but also undermined attempts at reform; unilaterally overrode the UN weapons inspectors; and manipulated votes in the Security Council. In every political, legal, and bureaucratic domain, the deliberate policies of the United States ensured the continuation of Iraq’s catastrophic condition.
Provocative and sure to stir debate, this book lays bare the damage that can be done by unchecked power in our institutions of international governance.
Iraq | Perspectives
Benjamin Lowy Duke University Press, 2011 Library of Congress DS79.762L69 2011 | Dewey Decimal 956.70443
Selected by William Eggleston as Winner The Center for Documentary Studies / Honickman First Book Prize in Photography
Benjamin Lowy’s powerful and arresting color photographs, taken over a six-year period through Humvee windows and military-issue night vision goggles, capture the desolation of a war-ravaged Iraq as well as the tension and anxiety of both U.S. soldiers and Iraqi civilians. To photograph on the streets unprotected was impossible for Lowy, so he made images that illuminate this difficulty by shooting photographs through the windows and goggles meant to help him, and soldiers, to see. In doing so he provides us with a new way of looking at the war—an entirely different framework for regarding and thinking about the everyday activities of Iraqis in a devastated landscape and the movements of soldiers on patrol, as well as the alarm and apprehension of nighttime raids.
“Iraq was a land of blast walls and barbed wire fences. I made my first image of a concrete blast wall through the window of my armored car. These pictures show a fragment of Iraqi daily life taken by a transient passenger in a Humvee; yet they are a window to a world where work, play, tension, grief, survival, and everything in between are as familiar as the events of our own lives. . . . [In] the ‘Nightvision’ images . . . as soldiers weave through the houses and bedrooms of civilians during nighttime military raids, they encounter the faces of their suspects as well as bystanders, many of whom are parents protecting their children. . . . I hope that these images provide the viewer with momentary illumination of the fear and desperation that is war.”—Benjamin Lowy
Journalist Jonathan Cook explores Israel’s key role in persuading the Bush administration to invade Iraq, as part of a plan to remake the Middle East, and their joint determination to isolate Iran and prevent it from acquiring nuclear weapons that might rival Israel’s own.
This concise and clearly argued book makes the case that Israel's desire to be the sole regional power in the Middle East neatly chimed with Bush’s objectives in the “war on terror”.
Examining a host of related issues, from the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians to the role of Big Oil and the demonisation of the Arab world, Cook argues that the current chaos in the Middle East is the objective of the Bush administration – a policy that is equally beneficial to Israel.
Anthropologist Diane E. King has written about everyday life in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, which covers much of the area long known as Iraqi Kurdistan. Following the overthrow of Saddam Hussein’s Ba’thist Iraqi government by the United States and its allies in 2003, Kurdistan became a recognized part of the federal Iraqi system. The Region is now integrated through technology, media, and migration to the rest of the world.
Focusing on household life in Kurdistan’s towns and villages, King explores the ways that residents connect socially, particularly through patron-client relationships and as people belonging to gendered categories. She emphasizes that patrilineages (male ancestral lines) seem well adapted to the Middle Eastern modern stage and viceversa. The idea of patrilineal descent influences the meaning of refuge-seeking and migration as well as how identity and place are understood, how women and men interact, and how “politicking” is conducted.
In the new Kurdistan, old values may be maintained, reformulated, or questioned. King offers a sensitive interpretation of the challenges resulting from the intersection of tradition with modernity. Honor killings still occur when males believe their female relatives have dishonored their families, and female genital cutting endures. Yet, this is a region where modern technology has spread and seemingly everyone has a mobile phone. Households may have a startling combination of illiterate older women and educated young women. New ideas about citizenship coexist with older forms of patronage.
King is one of the very few scholars who conducted research in Iraq under extremely difficult conditions during the Saddam Hussein regime. How she was able to work in the midst of danger and in the wake of genocide is woven throughout the stories she tells. Kurdistan on the Global Stage serves as a lesson in field research as well as a valuable ethnography.
In 2003, after serving five and a half years as a carpenter in a North Dakota National Guard engineer unit, Bronson Lemer was ready to leave the military behind. But six months short of completing his commitment to the army, Lemer was deployed on a yearlong tour of duty to Iraq. Leaving college life behind in the Midwest, he yearns for a lost love and quietly dreams of a future as an openly gay man outside the military. He discovers that his father’s lifelong example of silent strength has taught him much about being a man, and these lessons help him survive in a war zone and to conceal his sexuality, as he is required to do by the U.S. military.
The Last Deployment is a moving, provocative chronicle of one soldier’s struggle to reconcile military brotherhood with self-acceptance. Lemer captures the absurd nuances of a soldier’s daily life: growing a mustache to disguise his fear, wearing pantyhose to battle sand fleas, and exchanging barbs with Iraqis while driving through Baghdad. But most strikingly, he describes the poignant reality faced by gay servicemen and servicewomen, who must mask their identities while serving a country that disowns them. Often funny, sometimes anguished, The Last Deployment paints a deeply personal portrait of war in the twenty-first century.
InSight Out Book Club selection
Bronson Lemer named one of Instinct magazine’s Leading Men 2011
QPB Book Club selection
Finalist, Minnesota Book Awards
Finalist, Over the Rainbow Selection, American Library Association
Colonel Pat Proctor’s long overdue critique of the Army’s preparation and outlook in the all-volunteer era focuses on a national security issue that continues to vex in the twenty-first century: Has the Army lost its ability to win strategically by focusing on fighting conventional battles against peer enemies? Or can it adapt to deal with the greater complexity of counterinsurgent and information-age warfare?
In this blunt critique of the senior leadership of the U.S. Army, Proctor contends that after the fall of the Soviet Union, the U.S. Army stubbornly refused to reshape itself in response to the new strategic reality, a decision that saw it struggle through one low-intensity conflict after another—some inconclusive, some tragic—in the 1980s and 1990s, and leaving it largely unprepared when it found itself engaged—seemingly forever—in wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. The first book-length study to connect the failures of these wars to America’s disastrous performance in the war on terror, Proctor’s work serves as an attempt to convince Army leaders to avoid repeating the same mistakes.
The attacks of 9/11 led to a war on Iraq, although there was neither tangible evidence that the nation's leader, Saddam Hussein, was linked to Osama bin Laden nor proof of weapons of mass destruction. Why, then, did the Iraq war garner so much acceptance in the United States during its primary stages?
Mass Deception argues that the George W. Bush administration manufactured public support for the war on Iraq. Scott A. Bonn introduces a unique, integrated, and interdisciplinary theory called "critical communication" to explain how and why political elites and the news media periodically create public panics that benefit both parties. Using quantitative analysis of public opinion polls and presidential rhetoric pre- and post-9/11 in the news media, Bonn applies the moral panic concept to the Iraq war. He critiques the war and occupation of Iraq as violations of domestic and international law. Finally, Mass Deception connects propaganda and distortion efforts by the Bush administration to more general theories of elite deviance and state crime.
According to legend, the Garden of Eden was located in Iraq, and for millennia, Jews resided peacefully in metropolitan Baghdad. Memories of Eden: A Journey Through Jewish Baghdad reconstructs the last years of the oldest Jewish Diaspora community in the world through the recollections of Violette Shamash, a Jewish woman who was born in Baghdad in 1912, sent to her daughter Mira Rocca and son-in-law, the British journalist Tony Rocca. The result is a deeply textured memoir—an intimate portrait of an individual life, yet revealing of the complex dynamics of the Middle East in the twentieth century.
Toward the end of her long life, Violette Shamash began writing letters, notes, and essays and sending them to the Roccas. The resulting book begins near the end of Ottoman rule and runs through the British Mandate, the emergence of an independent Iraq, and the start of dictatorial government. Shamash clearly loved the world in which she grew up but is altogether honest in her depiction of the transformation of attitudes toward Baghdad’s Jewish population. Shamash’s world is finally shattered by the Farhud, the name given to the massacre of hundreds of Iraqi Jews over three days in 1941. An event that has received very slight historical coverage, the Farhud is further described and placed in context in a concluding essay by Tony Rocca.
Modern Iraqi Arabic with MP3 Files is an introductory textbook—suitable for classroom or self-study—for those with no previous knowledge of Arabic or those who know Arabic but want to learn the Iraqi dialect. A detailed discussion of the consonants, vowels, and other characteristics of Iraqi phonetics—including pronunciation exercises on the CD—serves the needs of travelers, businesspeople, diplomats, archaeologists, and scholars who want to learn to speak the language quickly and efficiently.
Using the dialect of middle-class Baghdad, twenty lessons are arranged in a story-like format and are based on everyday travel situations. From arriving at the airport to getting to the hotel, students will learn proper greetings and introductions; how to ask for directions, take a taxi, and tell time; and prepare for daily activities like visiting the bank, museum, post office, and restaurants. The book contains basic dialogue, grammar, vocabulary, drills, and an extensive glossary. A section of idiomatic phrases, accompanied by their cultural, religious, or proverbial explanations, offers insight into current Iraqi culture.
NEW TO THIS EDITION: • Arabic script has been added so the reader has a choice of following the Arabic writing or the transcription in the Roman alphabet. • Four entirely new lessons cover medical care, media (radio, television, and journalism), telephone conversations, and cultural and folkloric tales. • All audio materials from the first edition—plus new audio materials for the new lessons—are included as MP3 files on a CD bound into the book.
In 2005, Iraq drafted its first constitution and held the country’s first democratic election in more than fifty years. Even under ideal conditions, drafting a constitution can be a prolonged process marked by contentious debate, and conditions in Iraq are far from ideal: Iraq has long been racked by ethnic and sectarian conflict, which intensified following the American invasion and continues today. This severe division, which often erupted into violence, would not seem to bode well for the fate of democracy. So how is it that Iraq was able to surmount its sectarianism to draft a constitution that speaks to the conflicting and largely incompatible ideological view of the Sunnis, Shi’ah, and Kurds?
Haider Ala Hamoudi served in 2009 as an adviser to Iraq’s Constitutional Review Committee, and he argues here that the terms of the Iraqi Constitution are sufficiently capacious to be interpreted in a variety of ways, allowing it to appeal to the country’s three main sects despite their deep disagreements. While some say that this ambiguity avoids the challenging compromises that ultimately must be made if the state is to survive, Hamoudi maintains that to force these compromises on issues of central importance to ethnic and sectarian identity would almost certainly result in the imposition of one group’s views on the others. Drawing on the original negotiating documents, he shows that this feature of the Constitution was not an act of evasion, as is sometimes thought, but a mark of its drafters’ awareness in recognizing the need to permit the groups the time necessary to develop their own methods of working with one another over time.
New translations of fifty transliterated texts for research and classroom use
This collection of sixth-century B.C.E. Mesopotamian texts provides a close-up, often dramatic, view of ancient courtroom encounters shedding light on Neo-Babylonian legal culture and daily life. In addition to the legal texts, Holtz provides an introduction to Neo-Babylonian social history, archival records, and legal materials. This is an essential resource for scholars interested in the history of law.
Fifty new English translations
Transliterations for use in advanced Akkadian courses
Background essays perfect for courses dealing with ancient Near Eastern history and law
Explanatory essays preceding each text and its translation
In this intriguing blend of the commonplace and the ancient, Jean Bottéro presents the first extensive look at the delectable secrets of Mesopotamia. Bottéro’s broad perspective takes us inside the religious rites, everyday rituals, attitudes and taboos, and even the detailed preparation techniques involving food and drink in Mesopotamian high culture during the second and third millennia BCE, as the Mesopotamians recorded them.
Offering everything from translated recipes for pigeon and gazelle stews, the contents of medicinal teas and broths, and the origins of ingredients native to the region, this book reveals the cuisine of one of history’s most fascinating societies. Links to the modern world, along with incredible recreations of a rich, ancient culture through its cuisine, make Bottéro’s guide an entertaining and mesmerizing read.
Operation Homecoming is the result of a major initiative launched by the National Endowment for the Arts to bring distinguished writers to military bases to inspire U.S. soldiers, sailors, marines, airmen, and their families to record their wartime experiences. Encouraged by such authors as Tom Clancy, Tobias Wolff, and Marilyn Nelson, American military personnel and their loved ones wrote candidly about what they saw, heard, and felt while in Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as on the home front. These unflinching eyewitness accounts, private journals, short stories, and letters offer an intensely revealing look into extraordinary lives and are an unforgettable contribution to wartime literature.
“One of the chanted mantras of our time is, ‘But I support the troops.’ Terrific. Now read Operation Homecoming to find out who they are, what they think, feel, want, have learned, won and lost in Iraq and Afghanistan.”—Daniel Henninger, Wall Street Journal
“This anthology is the honest voice of war. . . . In the end, they are all one voice, a voice we must hear, and must not forget.”—Jeff Shaara
“These voices are stirring, chilling, and unforgettable.”—Bobbie Ann Mason
“[Captures] what journalists cannot, no matter how close they get—firsthand accounts from the warriors and the families they leave behind.”—ChicagoTribune
This distinctive book is the first to address the topic of landscape archaeology in early states from a truly global perspective. It provides an excellent introduction to—and overview of—the discipline today. The volume grew out of the Fifth Biennial Meeting of the Complex Societies Group, whose theme, States and the Landscape, paid tribute to the work of Robert McC. Adams. When Adams began publishing in the 1960s, the interdependence of cities and their countrysides, and the information revealed through the spatial patterning of communities, went largely unrecognized. Today, as this useful collection makes clear, these interpretive insights are fundamental to all archaeologists who investigate the roles of complex polities in their landscapes.
Polities and Power features detailed studies from an intentionally disparate array of regions, including Mesoamerica, Andean South America, southwestern Asia, East Africa, and the Indian subcontinent. Each chapter or pair of chapters is followed by a critical commentary. In concert, these studies strive to infer social, political, and economic meaning from archaeologically discerned landscapes associated with societies that incorporate some expression of state authority. The contributions engage a variety of themes, including the significance of landscapes as they condition and reflect complex polities; the interplay of natural and cultural elements in defining landscapes of state; archaeological landscapes as ever-dynamic entities; and archaeological landscapes as recursive structures, reflected in palimpsests of human activity.
Individually, many of these contributions are provocative, even controversial. Taken together, they reveal the contours of landscape archaeology at this particular evolutionary moment.
We’ve all seen the images from Abu Ghraib: stress positions, US soldiers kneeling on the heads of prisoners, and dehumanizing pyramids formed from black-hooded bodies. We have watched officials elected to our highest offices defend enhanced interrogation in terms of efficacy and justify drone strikes in terms of retribution and deterrence. But the mainstream secular media rarely addresses the morality of these choices, leaving us to ask individually: Is this right?
In this singular examination of the American discourse over war and torture, Douglas V. Porpora, Alexander Nikolaev, Julia Hagemann May, and Alexander Jenkins investigate the opinion pages of American newspapers, television commentary, and online discussion groups to offer the first empirical study of the national conversation about the 2003 invasion of Iraq and the revelations of prisoner abuse at Abu Ghraib a year later. Post-Ethical Society is not just another shot fired in the ongoing culture war between conservatives and liberals, but a pensive and ethically engaged reflection of America’s feelings about itself and our actions as a nation. And while many writers and commentators have opined about our moral place in the world, the vast amount of empirical data amassed in Post-Ethical Society sets it apart—and makes its findings that much more damning.
This book continues the personal story of Jabra Ibrahim Jabra (1920â€“1994) that began with The First Well: A Bethlehem Boyhood. Jabra was one of the Middle Eastâ€™s leading novelists, poets, critics, painters, and translators (he was the first to translate The Sound and the Fury into Arabic), and is the writer who is given credit for modernizing the Arabic novel. This book not only helps us understand Jabra as a writer and human being but also his times in postâ€“World War II Baghdad when Iraq was enjoying an unprecedented period of creativity in literature and the arts. As a bright and inquisitive young man he became friends with the archeologist Max Mallowan and his wife, who, he later learned, was Agatha Christie (she wrote The Mousetrap during this period, in a little mud brick room). Jabraâ€™s intellectual autobiography quickly developed as he traveled to Jerusalem, Oxford, and Harvard University, where he studied with I. A. Richards and Archibald MacLeish. A number of different teaching posts in Baghdad provided him opportunities to become friends with many leading poets, such as Buland al-Haydari and Tawfiq Sayigh; historians like George Antonius; and the renowned translators of Arabic literature Desmond Stewart and Denys Johnson-Davies. But this book is not only about matters of the mind, it is about matters of the heart as well. Jabra beautifully describes his lengthy love affair with a young Muslim woman, the beautiful Lamica, whom he first met near Princessesâ€™ Street and whom he eventually married. He recounts all of the difficulties they had to surmount, and the pleasures to be had. This is the last book that Jabra published during his lifetime. Not only is Jabraâ€™s life an outstanding example of the circumstancesâ€”and fateâ€”of the Palestinian in the twentieth century, but it also provides countless interesting insights into the cultural life of the Middle East in general and its modes of interconnection with the West.
In April 2005 they received the official alert: The Wisconsin Army National Guard's 2-127th Infantry Battalion was being mobilized. After training at Camp Shelby, Mississippi, the 620 soldiers of the Gator Battalion would serve in Operation Iraqi Freedom, providing armed convoy escort and route security throughout all of Iraq, from Umm Qasr in the south to Mosul in the far north. Their mission would take them into the most dangerous regions of Iraq, and during the next year the battalion would withstand hundreds of attacks, see dozens wounded, and lose three members killed in action.
Private Soldiers chronicles the 2-127th's year-long deployment from the unique perspective of the soldiers themselves. Written and photographed by three battalion members, the book provides a rare first-hand account of war and life in Iraq. Fascinating soldier interviews reveal the effects of deployment on the troops and on their families back home, and interviews with Iraqi civilians describe the Iraqis' perceptions of life, war, and working alongside Wisconsin troops. Brilliant photography illuminates the 2-127th's year, from training to "boots on the ground" to their return home. And candid photos taken by battalion members capture the soldiers' day-to-day lives and camaraderie.
An extremely timely and relevant account of soldiers' lives, Private Soldiers honors Wisconsin's participants in the Iraq war and helps readers understand the war's human side.
All royalties from sales of Private Soldiers will go to the 2-127th's family support groups and to funds established in memoriam of the battalion members who gave their lives in the Iraq war.
On April 10, 2003, as the world watched a statue of Saddam Hussein come crashing down in the heart of Baghdad, a mob of looters attacked the Iraq National Museum. Despite the presence of an American tank unit, the pillaging went unchecked, and more than 15,000 artifacts—some of the oldest evidence of human culture—disappeared into the shadowy worldwide market in illicit antiquities. In the five years since that day, the losses have only mounted, with gangs digging up roughly half a million artifacts that had previously been unexcavated; the loss to our shared human heritage is incalculable.
With The Rape of Mesopotamia, Lawrence Rothfield answers the complicated question of how this wholesale thievery was allowed to occur. Drawing on extensive interviews with soldiers, bureaucrats, war planners, archaeologists, and collectors, Rothfield reconstructs the planning failures—originating at the highest levels of the U.S. government—that led to the invading forces’ utter indifference to the protection of Iraq’s cultural heritage from looters. Widespread incompetence and miscommunication on the part of the Pentagon, unchecked by the disappointingly weak advocacy efforts of worldwide preservation advocates, enabled a tragedy that continues even today, despite widespread public outrage.
Bringing his story up to the present, Rothfield argues forcefully that the international community has yet to learn the lessons of Iraq—and that what happened there is liable to be repeated in future conflicts. A powerful, infuriating chronicle of the disastrous conjunction of military adventure and cultural destruction, The Rape of Mesopotamia is essential reading for all concerned with the future of our past.
How did the invention of writing in the ancient world change our way of thinking, recording, and remembering forever? In this wide-ranging study, Charpin discusses the place of literacy in the early civilization of Babylonia in the time between 2500 and 500 BC. Writing at this time was used for domestic record keeping, tracking inventory and sales, for inscriptions and tombs, and for communicating with gods. He argues for a much wider spread of literacy than previously thought and explains the historical and social contexts within which literacy proliferated in early Babylon.
One of the world's foremost experts on Assyriology, Jean Bottéro has studied the religion of ancient Mesopotamia for more than fifty years. Building on these many years of research, Bottéro here presents the definitive account of one of the world's oldest known religions. He shows how ancient Mesopotamian religion was practiced both in the public and private spheres, how it developed over the three millennia of its active existence, and how it profoundly influenced Western civilization, including the Hebrew Bible.
The National Guardsman, the citizen soldier called upon to fight for this nation in a time of war, is one of the least understood — and perhaps one of the most compelling — figures of the Iraq War. Saber’s Edge is the story of a middle-aged Vermont firefighter called upon to be a soldier in the worst place on earth — Ramadi, Iraq. In a few short weeks Thomas A. Middleton went from being a suburban dad to a combat medic traveling between platoons, filling in for other medics and engaging in some of the fiercest and most crucial fighting of the war. This is the war as experienced from the ground level: days of tedium interspersed with the adrenalin of combat; moments of lighthearted laughter broken by the sorrow of loss. This is also the story of the unique wartime perspective of our guardsmen. Unlike the raw, unformed young recruit, the mature guardsman often comes with the burdens of family, experience, and a developed sense of self. Accordingly, Sgt. Middleton’s story chronicles the inner conflict created by his long-time professional role as a healer and his newfound life as a warrior in the urban battlefields of Iraq. Thrust into a culture and theater of war that he is little equipped or trained for, the author tries to make sense of his actions. Coarsened by combat and increasingly disdainful of the local population, he receives solace and insight from his life-long faith and ultimately emerges as a man who understands his role in the world. Saber’s Edge is also the story of the Green Mountain Boys of Task Force Saber: a story of comradeship and communion amid fierce street fighting in a crucial theater of the Iraq War (the eventual site of the “Al Anbar Awakening”). Based on the author’s first-hand experiences and interviews with other soldiers, Saber’s Edge presents a riveting account of modern urban warfare and the inspiring story of one man reconciling his actions in warfare.
The Iraqi city of Fallujah has become an epicenter of geopolitical conflict, where foreign powers and non-state actors have repeatedly waged war in residential neighborhoods with staggering humanitarian consequences. The Sacking of Fallujah is the first comprehensive study of the three recent sieges of this city, including those by the United States in 2004 and the Iraqi-led operation to defeat ISIS in 2016.
Unlike dominant military accounts that focus on American soldiers and U.S. leaders and perpetuate the myth that the United States "liberated" the city, this book argues that Fallujah was destroyed by coalition forces, leaving public health crises, political destabilization, and mass civilian casualties in their wake. This meticulously researched account cuts through the propaganda to uncover the lived experiences of Fallujans under siege and occupation, and contextualizes these events within a broader history of U.S. policy in the Middle East. Relying on testimony from Iraqi civilians, the work of independent journalists, and documentation from human rights organizations, Ross Caputi, Richard Hil, and Donna Mulhearn place the experiences of Fallujah's residents at the center of this city's recent history.
A critical resource that traces the reign of Sargon in context
Josette Elayi's book is the only existing biography of Sargon II, the famous Assyrian king, who was a megalomaniac and a warlord. Elayi addresses such important questions, including what was his precise role in the disappearance of the kingdom of Israel; how did Sargon II succeed in enlarging the borders of the Assyrian Empire by several successful campaigns; how did he organize his empire (administration, trade, agriculture, libraries), and what was the so-called sin of Sargon?
Interpretations of decisive events during the life and reign of the Assyrian king
A Short Reference Grammar of Iraqi Arabic is the only volume of its kind, reflecting Iraqi Arabic as spoken by Muslims in Baghdad. With all the Arabic transcribed, it is written for beginners as well as Arabic speakers wanting to learn the dialect. It covers the phonology, morphology (word formation of nouns, verbs, pronouns, adjectives, and numerals, achieved by adding prefixes and suffixes to roots), and syntax, teaching the reader how to make the sounds, form words, and construct sentences.
A Slap in the Face
Abbas Khider Seagull Books, 2018 Library of Congress PT2711.H54O4713 2018 | Dewey Decimal 833.92
In our era of mass migration, much of it driven by war and its aftermath, A Slap in the Face could not be more timely. It tells the story of Karim, an Iraqi refugee living in Germany whose right to asylum has been revoked in the wake of Saddam Hussein’s defeat. But Hussein wasn’t the only reason Karim left, and as Abbas Khider unfolds his story, we learn both the secret struggles he faced in his homeland and the battles with prejudice, distrust, poverty, and bureaucracy he has to endure in his attempts to make a new life in Germany. As he erupts in frustration at his caseworker, and finally forces her to listen to his story, we get an account of a contemporary life upended by politics and violence, told with a warmth and humor that, while surprising us, does nothing to lessen the outrages Karim describes.
An essential document of the first American war of the new century
Under a full opalescent moon in the spring of 2003, CNN correspondent Walter C. Rodgers and three colleagues climbed into an unarmored Humvee loaded with satellite transmission equipment and fell into column formation with the MIAI Abrams battle tanks and Bradley fighting vehicles of Apache Troop, Third Squadron, of the storied 7th Cavalry and crossed the Line of Departure between Kuwait and Iraq. Sleeping with Custer and the 7th Cavalry: An Embedded Reporter in Iraq is Rodgers’s account of the fight from the Kuwaiti border to the Iraqi capital of Baghdad.
Rodgers was embedded with the “tip of the tip of the spear,” the armored reconnaissance unit tasked with clearing the way for the invasion of Iraq. For the next three weeks Rodgers—a seasoned combat correspondent who has covered armed conflicts in the West Bank, along the “Green Line” in Lebanon, and in Sarajevo, Azerbaijan, and Afghanistan—was a first-person witness to the opening campaign of the most significant war America has embarked upon since Vietnam.
Rodgers and his journalistic colleagues in Operation Iraqi Freedom became pioneers in the process of embedding, the placing of journalists who can transmit video reports in real time under combat conditions with no censoring authority to block their reporting. During this journey into war, Rodgers and his crew embraced the dangers, the numbing fatigue, and the moments of stark fear of the young armored cavalrymen they lived with twenty-four hours each day, an experience that created for them the lifelong bond that only soldiers serving together under fire share.
Rodgers also details his return visit to Iraq a year later, reflecting on the nature of war and sharing his personal feelings about a conflict that has claimed the lives of over fifteen hundred American men and women. The volume is illustrated with photographs taken during the invasion by Jeff Barwise, the CNN engineer who accompanied Rodgers.
An introductory guide for scholars and students of the ancient Near East and the history of medicine
In this collection JoAnn Scurlock assembles and translates medical texts that provided instructions for ancient doctors and pharmacists. Scurlock unpacks the difficult, technical vocabulary that describes signs and symptoms as well as procedures and plants used in treatments. This fascinating material shines light on the development of medicine in the ancient Near East, yet these tablets were essentially inaccessible to anyone without an expertise in cuneiform. Scurlock’s work fills this gap by providing a key resource for teaching and research.
Accessible translations and transliterations for both specialists and non-specialists
Texts include a range of historical periods and regions
Therapeutic, pharmacological, and diagnostic texts
This riveting and utterly unique memoir chronicles the coming of age of Cynthia Shamash, an Iraqi Jew born in Baghdad in 1963. When she was eight, her family tried to escape Iraq over the Iranian border, but they were captured and jailed for five weeks. Upon release, they were returned to their home in Baghdad, where most of their belongings had been confiscated and the door of their home sealed with wax. They moved in with friends and applied for passports to spend a ten-day vacation in Istanbul, although they never intended to return. From Turkey, the family fled to Tel Aviv and then to Amsterdam, where Cynthia’s father soon died of a heart attack. At the age of twelve, Sanuti (as her mother called her) was sent to London for schooling, where she lived in an Orthodox Jewish enclave with the chief rabbi and his family. At the end of the school year, she returned to Holland to navigate her teen years in a culture that was much more sexually liberal than the one she had been born into, or indeed the one she was experiencing among Orthodox Jews in London. Shortly after finishing her schooling as a dentist, Cynthia moved to the United States in an attempt to start over. This vivid, beautiful, and very funny memoir will appeal to readers intrigued by spirituality, tolerance, the personal ramifications of statelessness and exile, the clashes of cultures, and the future of Iraq and its Jews.
Most archaeologists and historians of the ancient Near East have focused on the internal transformations that led to the emergence of early cities and states. In The Uruk World System, Guillermo Algaze concentrates on the unprecedented and wide-ranging process of external expansion that coincided with the rapid initial crystallization of Mesopotamian civilization. In this extensive study, he contends that the rise of early Sumerian polities cannot be understood without also taking into account the developments in surrounding peripheral areas. This new edition includes a substantial new chapter that explores recent data and interpretations of the expansion of Uruk settlements across Syro-Mesopotamia.
In The USSR and Iraq, the first major study of Soviet-Iraqi relations, Oles M. Smolansky examines the history of the relationship between these two countries during the past twenty years and attempts to dispel the misconception that the Soviet Union has enjoyed undue influence over Iraq. Drawing on ten years of research in Western, Arab, and Soviet sources, Smolansky analyzes the complex issues at the center of Soviet-Iraqi relations from 1968 through 1988, including the nationalization of the oil industry, the Kurdish question, the Iraqi Communist Party, the affairs of the Persian/Arabian Gulf, and, ultimately, the war between Iraq and Iran. Smolansky concludes that Iraq has never been under the dominant influence of Moscow, nor has it even been a loyal Soviet ally. In fact, Iraq has managed to reap major benefits from the relationship without losing its autonomy or sacrificing its major interests. The author discusses the Soviet Union and Iraq within the larger framework of the nature of influence relationships between great and small powers.
A sobering look at the intimate relationship between political power and the news media, When the Press Fails argues the dependence of reporters on official sources disastrously thwarts coverage of dissenting voices from outside the Beltway.
The result is both an indictment of official spin and an urgent call to action that questions why the mainstream press failed to challenge the Bush administration’s arguments for an invasion of Iraq or to illuminate administration policies underlying the Abu Ghraib controversy. Drawing on revealing interviews with Washington insiders and analysis of content from major news outlets, the authors illustrate the media’s unilateral surrender to White House spin whenever oppositional voices elsewhere in government fall silent. Contrasting these grave failures with the refreshingly critical reporting on Hurricane Katrina—a rare event that caught officials off guard, enabling journalists to enter a no-spin zone—When the Press Fails concludes by proposing new practices to reduce reporters’ dependence on power.
“The hand-in-glove relationship of the U.S. media with the White House is mercilessly exposed in this determined and disheartening study that repeatedly reveals how the press has toed the official line at those moments when its independence was most needed.”—George Pendle, Financial Times
“Bennett, Lawrence, and Livingston are indisputably right about the news media’s dereliction in covering the administration’s campaign to take the nation to war against Iraq.”—Don Wycliff, ChicagoTribune
“[This] analysis of the weaknesses of Washington journalism deserves close attention.”—Russell Baker, New YorkReview of Books
Donald Anderson, a former U.S. Air Force officer, has compiled a haunting anthology of personal essays and short memoirs that span more than 100 years of warfare. Alvord White Clements—himself a veteran of the Second World War—introduces his grandfather Isaac N. Clements’s Civil War memoir; the novelist Paul West writes of his father, a British veteran of World War I, as well as of his own boyhood recollections of the London Blitz. John Wolfe details the life-changing and life-threatening injuries he sustained in Vietnam and the hallucinations he experienced afterward. Second Gulf War veteran Jason Armagost traces his journey to Iraq through the history of literature and the books he brought with him to the war zone.
The thirteen essays in When War Becomes Personal tell the enduring truths of battle, stripping away much of the romance, myth, and fantasy.
Soldiers more than anyone know what they are capable of destroying; when they write about war, they are trying to preserve the world.
Arriving in Iraq on the eve of the U.S. invasion, unaffiliated with any newspaper and hoping to pick up assignments along the way, Ashley Gilbertson was one of the first photojournalists to cover the disintegration of America’s military triumph as looting and score settling convulsed Iraqi cities. Just twenty-five years old at the time, Gilbertson soon landed a contract with the New York Times, and his extraordinary images of life in occupied Iraq and of American troops in action began appearing in the paper regularly. Throughout his work, Gilbertson took great risks to document the risks taken by others, whether dodging sniper fire with American infantry, photographing an Iraqi bomb squad as they diffused IEDs, or following marines into the cauldron of urban combat.
Whiskey Tango Foxtrot gathers the best of Gilbertson’s photographs, chronicling America’s early battles in Iraq, the initial occupation of Baghdad, the insurgency that erupted shortly afterward, the dramatic battle to overtake Falluja, and ultimately, the country’s first national elections. No Western photojournalist has done as much sustained work in occupied Iraq as Gilbertson, and this wide-ranging treatment of the war from the viewpoint of a photographer is the first of its kind. Accompanying each section of the book is a personal account of Gilbertson’s experiences covering the conflict. Throughout, he conveys the exhilaration and terror of photographing war, as well as the challenges of photojournalism in our age of embedded reporting. But ultimately, and just as importantly, Whiskey Tango Foxtrot tells the story of Gilbertson’s own journey from hard-drinking bravado to the grave realism of a scarred survivor. Here he struggles with guilt over the death of a marine escort, tells candidly of his own experience with post-traumatic stress, and grapples with the reality that Iraq—despite the sacrifice in Iraqi and American lives—has descended into a civil war with no end in sight.
A searing account of the American experience in Iraq, Whiskey Tango Foxtrot is sure to become one of the classic war photography books of our time.
Why did America invade Iraq? Why do nations choose to fight certain wars and not others? How do we bring ourselves to believe that the sacrifice of our troops is acceptable? For most, the answers to these questions are tied to struggles for power or resources and the machinations of particular interest groups. Philip Smith argues that this realist answer to the age-old "why war?" question is insufficient. Instead, Smith suggests that every war has its roots in the ways we tell and interpret stories.
Comprised of case studies of the War in Iraq, the Gulf War, and the Suez Crisis, Why War? decodes the cultural logic of the narratives that justify military action. Each nation, Smith argues, makes use of binary codes—good and evil, sacred and profane, rational and irrational, to name a few. These codes, in the hands of political leaders, activists, and the media, are deployed within four different types of narratives—mundane, tragic, romantic, or apocalyptic. With this cultural system, Smith is able to radically recast our "war stories" and show how nations can have vastly different understandings of crises as each identifies the relevant protagonists and antagonists, objects of struggle, and threats and dangers.
The large-scale sacrifice of human lives necessary in modern war, according to Smith, requires an apocalyptic vision of world events. In the case of the War in Iraq, for example, he argues that the United States and Britain replicated a narrative of impending global doom from the Gulf War. But in their apocalyptic account they mistakenly made the now seemingly toothless Saddam Hussein once again a symbol of evil by writing him into the story alongside al Qaeda, resulting in the war's contestation in the United States, Britain, and abroad.
Offering an innovative approach to understanding how major wars are packaged, sold, and understood, Why War? will be applauded by anyone with an interest in military history, political science, cultural studies, and communication.
Vivid sources for reconstructing the lives of Assyrian women
In this collection Cécile Michel translates into English texts related to wives and daughters of merchants and to their activities in nineteenth-century BCE Aššur and Kaneš. Discovered in excavations of the Old Assyrian private archives at Kültepe (ancient Kaneš) in Central Anatolia, these letters sent from Aššur reflect the preeminent role of Assyrian women within the family and in the domestic economy, as well as their contribution to long-distance trade. Contracts and other legal texts excavated at Kültepe attest to Assyrian and Anatolian women as parties in marriage and divorce contracts, last wills, loans, and purchase contracts. These unique finds paint a vivid portrait of women who aspire to be socially respected and provide a rare opportunity to reconstruct their daily lives as both businesswomen and housewives.
More than three hundred letters and documents transliterated and translated with commentary
An overview of the study of women and gender in Assyriology
A reconstruction of women's roles as textile producers, investors, and creditors within a long-distance commercial network
Cécile Michel is Senior Researcher at the National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS, France) and Professor at Hamburg University (Germany). She is a member of the international group of scholars in charge of the decipherment of the 23,000 tablets found at Kültepe (ancient Kaneš) and of the Kültepe archaeological team. She is the coeditor of and contributor to The Role of Women in Work and Society in the Ancient Near East (2016), Textile Terminologies from the Orient to the Mediterranean and Europe, 1000 BC to 1000 AD (2017), and Mathematics, Administrative and Economic Activities in Ancient Worlds (2020).
On February 15, 2003, the largest one-day protest in human history took place as millions of people in hundreds of cities marched in the streets, rallying against the imminent invasion of Iraq. This was activism on an unprecedented scale.
The World Says No to War strives to understand who spoke out, why they did, and how so many people were mobilized for a global demonstration. Using surveys collected by researchers from eight countries—Belgium, Britain, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, and the United States—The World Says No to War analyzes how the new tools of the Internet were combined with more conventional means of mobilization to rally millions, many with little experience in activism, around common goals and against common targets.
Contributors: W. Lance Bennett, U of Washington; Michelle Beyeler, U Bern; Christian Breunig, U of Toronto; Mario Diani, U of Trento; Terri E. Givens, U of Texas, Austin; Bert Klandermans, Free U Amsterdam; Donatella della Porta, European U Institute; Wolfgang Rüdig, U of Strathclyde; Sidney Tarrow, Cornell U; Peter Van Aelst, U of Antwerp.
Ancient Mesopotamia, the fertile crescent between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers in what is now western Iraq and eastern Syria, is considered to be the cradle of civilization—home of the Babylonian and Assyrian empires, as well as the great Code of Hammurabi. The Code was only part of a rich juridical culture from 2200–1600 BCE that saw the invention of writing and the development of its relationship to law, among other remarkable firsts.
Though ancient history offers inexhaustible riches, Dominique Charpin focuses here on the legal systems of Old Babylonian Mesopotamia and offers considerable insight into how writing and the law evolved together to forge the principles of authority, precedent, and documentation that dominate us to this day. As legal codes throughout the region evolved through advances in cuneiform writing, kings and governments were able to stabilize their control over distant realms and impose a common language—which gave rise to complex social systems overseen by magistrates, judges, and scribes that eventually became the vast empires of history books. Sure to attract any reader with an interest in the ancient Near East, as well as rhetoric, legal history, and classical studies, this book is an innovative account of the intertwined histories of law and language.