Sources & Additional Learning Material

Media history:

The Iraqi Press: The Heritage of the Past and the Challenges of the Future

Al Jezairy, Zuhair (2006). The Iraqi Press: The Heritage of the Past and the Challenges of the Future. Assessment. Copenhagen: International Media Support.

Since the 4th of April 2003, Iraq has witnessed a major transformation in its media landscape. From just five daily newspapers, within the first three months the number of the weekly and daily newspapers rose to more than 180. The change has not just been restricted to the quantity of the titles available, but there has also been a substantive qualitative shift in ownership structures and in public’s free access to information.

During the past 35 years, the majority of Iraqi press was owned either by the state or by the ruling party (except one newspaper which belonged to a Kurdish party who had entered into an alliance with the government). Those newspapers received their instructions from what was then called “The National Information Bureau” which was operated by the ruling party. This “bureau” was responsible for directing the editorial policy of these newspapers.

The Iraqi Media: 25 years of relentless repression

Cazes, Séverine (2003). The Iraqi Media: 25 years of relentless repression. RSF: Paris.

How did the Iraqi press - one of the most vibrant and independent presses in the Middle East from 1920 to 1958 - degenerate into an official organ whose sole purpose is to disseminate propaganda on behalf of the Iraqi leader, Saddam Hussein?


General information:

Iraq: A Diverse Media

David A. Rousu argues that Iraq now qualifies as having a diverse media, despite some government ownership and occasional instances in which the authorities have used legal provisions against media organizations

Rousu, David A. (2010). Iraq: A Diverse Media. Arab Media & Society, 10 (Spring).


Media politics & press freedom:

Media on the Move. A Reader on Iraqi Media and Media Law

"This collection of articles and interviews has come about as part of an effort to support the process of enacting media-relevant legislation in Iraq with the aim of encouraging media development within the country. Our aim here has been to provide Iraqi and international expert-commentary on current draft laws and legislative issues in this area, as well as on various aspects of media development in Iraq which are relevant to the formation of a legislative basis.[...]" - (Wollenberg, p.4)

Glenewinkel, Klaas, Katawi, Mona, Wollenberg, Anja, Adwan, Mirvat, Al-Mulhem, Koumay (2007). Media on the Move. A Reader on Iraqi Media and Media Law. Amman: Friedrich Ebert Foundation.