Interactive map of the entire history of Iraq/Mesopotamia is now complete.


Interactive map of the entire history of
Iraq/Mesopotamia
is now complete.



Interactive
number two is now complete as well. Obviously, the

“Iraq History” Interactive Map
is highly current and
relevant. I went back to the beginning, in order to show the
thorough progression of the region, to show how Iraq became
“Iraq”, and to illustrate why it has been a lightning rod for
conflict throughout most of its history, culminating in the
current Iraq War.
Even by
rapidly clicking from the first time period (Ancient
Mesopotamia) to the Iraq War, it is clear to see that the region
is geopolitically positioned at the crossroads of the Eurasian
landmass, a veritable highway for powerful forces from all
sides. It resides at the juncture near the convergence of
Europe, Asia, Africa, Arabia and the Persian Gulf (providing
easy access to the Indian Ocean). As a result, any powerful army
or navy from any direction are presented with unfettered access
to the floodplain between the Euphrates and Tigris Rivers, which
is the epicenter modern and historical nation of Iraq.

Early in its history, the harsh
desert to the south and west, along with the rugged mountain
range to the east isolated the fertile Euphrates-Tigris
floodplain from the rest of the developed world, giving rise to
world’s most advanced ancient civilizations. However, as early
technological advances in military and transportation were
pioneered, the deserts essentially served as a paved pathway
into the region.

Early in history, this
geography enabled Mesopotamian empires such as the Assyrians and
Babylonians to project their power outward. But since the 6th
century BC, the geography has served as the proverbial red
carpet for invading armies.

Iraq would endure under the
rule of the Persians, Greeks, Romans, Muslim Arabs, Mongols,
Turks and British. After finally escaping foreign rule, Iraq
became a sovereign nation in the 20th century, after WWI, fueled
by the massive oil reservoirs discovered beneath its soil.

But its geopolitical reality
remained unchanged, while its oil wealth made it an even more
enticing target. The floodplain at the heart of Iraq is
conducive to dense, yet fragmented populations. With threats on
all fronts, along with sectarian divisions within, a dictatorial
regime was a natural consequence, which was manifested in the
form of Saddam Hussein. This combination was unsurprisingly
unsustainable, opening the region up to yet another irresistible
force: the U.S. With unprecedented naval strength, the Americans
easily exploited the Persian Gulf (and coastal territories
inside friendly Kuwait) as the launching point for its 2003
invasion.

Even with the Iraq War finally
winding down, the region will almost certainly suffer continued
strife and warfare, as the geopolitical challenges and sectarian
tensions cannot be eradicated. The current calm within the storm
is characterized by an uneasy peace, which will eventually erupt
again.

By spending even just a matter
of minutes exploring the

Iraq History Interactive Map
, your understanding of the
historical trends of Iraq (that dictate its current realities)
will be greatly deepened.


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