Archives About Staff BagNews is dedicated to visual politics, media literacy and the analysis of news images.
November 6, 2007

Iraq: Breaking Up Is … Easy To Visualize


Marc Lynch at abuaardvark reports on a map that has gone viral in Iraq.  (See: “Federalism is our path” – link.)

According to Lynch, the image in question was produced by SCIRI, the Shi’a organization, and is getting a boost by way of Shia members of parliament.  The main text is said to read:  “Federalism is our one path to freedom and security.”  Notice also how the Sunni section is ominously darker and appears to have lost land mass across its south.

Roads to Iraq (via Abuardvark) points out a couple of other peculiarities.  Half of the Ramadi province (a Sunni stronghold) has been given over to the Shiite holy city of Karbala.  Also, the oil rich Kirkuk appears to have been moved out of Kurdistan and into the dark blue Sunni area.  (I guess that is the Shiite idea of throwing the Sunni’s a bone — at the Kurds expense.) 

Finally, I was interested in the rays extending toward the heavens from the clasped hands.  Because of the scale, the hands extending over the eastern border, and because it is anchored deep in the south, could the embrace here really be between Shiite Iraq and Iran?


  • tina

    a Balkanized Iraq. Delightful. A sure recipe for peace and an answer to our dilemma. Uh-huh.

  • Rafael

    It also remains unnamed.

  • wmcq

    Simple enough:
    Kurdran, and

  • MonsieurGonzo

    ref : “it seems clear that some sort of major power struggle broke out… a Sadrist- ISCI struggle for the Shiite south
    An interesting historical turn here would be the result of Sadr casting himself as an Iraqi Nationalist and the [other large, Iranian-backed Shi'ite proxy militia, the] ISCI:BADR Corps as Iranian Agents Provocateur.
    “The Attack on IRAN” then takes place not on Iranian soil, as we have to now envisioned it; rather, the battlespace becomes southern IRAQ. No new (legal or) operational precedent is needed to confront IRAN in the blurry Shi’ite space that is its “Iraqi occupied territory,” or for that matter, the blurry Kurdish Lebensraum that is Iran’s northwest.
    imho, Sadr’s best endgame is to approach the Sunnis with an “Iraqi Nationalist agenda,” in effect: an oil-sharing agreement. The Saudis then recognize this balanced Sunni:Shi’ite “State” as “IRAQ”.
    IRAN:BADR Corps is then forced to either cede control of the South, or defend it: against an Arabian-recognized “IRAQ,” backed by American armour and air power.
    In any event, the Americans and Arabians appear resolved that IRAN shall not have even ‘remote control’ of the southern oil field. And from a strategic point of view, it makes more sense for the Americans to re-deploy from Baghdad towards/to Basra, and remain there.

  • gaynelled84

    Learn how to generate 35 $ every day from your home go here: surveymoneymaker dot net

Refresh Archives

Random Notes