Best Defense

Expert’s picks: The top 10 sites to follow if you want to understand events in Iraq

By Joel Wing Best Defense guest columnist As Iraq has returned to the headlines and the United States and its allies are getting involved militarily again there is increased interest in the country. Here in no particular order is a short list of ten Internet sites that will keep you up to date on the ...

via U.S. Army/flickr
via U.S. Army/flickr


By Joel Wing

Best Defense guest columnist

As Iraq has returned to the headlines and the United States and its allies are getting involved militarily again there is increased interest in the country. Here in no particular order is a short list of ten Internet sites that will keep you up to date on the politics, security, and economic situation in the nation.

National Iraqi News Agency: The National Iraqi News Agency publishes in English and Arabic. It features short and to-the-point articles and has one of the best security sections of any Iraqi paper. Not only that, but they are constantly putting out new pieces throughout the day making it one of the easiest ways to keep up with events in the country.

Niqash: Niqash is run by the Media in Cooperation and Transition (MICT) out of Berlin. It features Iraqi journalists writing in-depth pieces on the economy, politics, security, and society, which are put out on a weekly basis.

Institute for the Study of War: The Institute for the Study of War releases handy "Iraq Situation Reports," which are maps with the latest security incidents on them. They also put out more in-depth reports about once a week again focusing upon violence in Iraq.

All Iraq News (AIN): AIN is another Iraqi paper that publishes in English and Arabic. Its political coverage is as good as NINA, but its security reporting is not as comprehensive. It is still an easy site to maneuver through for daily events in Iraq. 

Iraq And Gulf Analysis: Run by Reidar Visser, long-time analyst and author on Iraqi affairs, Iraq and Gulf Analysis is one of the last blogs about Iraq left on the Internet. Visser provides great reporting on Iraq’s politics.

Daily Updates from Anbar: Daily Updates from Anbar is published by Radio Free Iraq (RFI), part of the U.S.-funded international radio networks. Anbar is one of the major battlefronts in Iraq and there is no better reporting on the situation there than these blog posts by RFI.

Al Mada — Arabic: Al Mada is one of the best newspapers in Iraq. It runs two separate sites: one that is more of a daily paper, and one that publishes more in-depth pieces. This is the latter. Has great sources and analysis of Iraqi politics.

Alsumaria — Arabic: Alsumaria is one of Iraq’s top television stations. Its website is just as good. It publishes in Arabic and English, but you really need the former to get its full coverage. It has one of the best security and political sections around. Many of their articles get republished by other Iraqi papers. 

Al Rayy — Arabic: Al Rayy is another Iraqi paper with strong coverage of the country’s politics and security. Short and concise articles in Arabic.

Aymennjawad: Another one of the few Iraq blogs left, this one is published by analyst Aymenn Jawad al-Tamimi. He has some of the best reporting on Iraq’s insurgency, but covers other issues as well.

Joel Wing is a U.S.-based Iraq analyst who has run the blog Musings on Iraq since 2008. 

Thomas E. Ricks covered the U.S. military from 1991 to 2008 for the Wall Street Journal and then the Washington Post. He can be reached at ricksblogcomment@gmail.com.

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