Driving Directions Iraq
IRAQ is located in southwest Asia, wedged between The Gulf and Syria. The Republic of Iraq includes most ancient Mesopotamia, which lay between the Tigris and Euphrates, the two great rivers that are a dominant feature of Iraq. These two rivers flow through Iraq from northwest to southeast before finally uniting to form Shatt al Arab’s tidal river, which empties into The Gulf.
The lower part of this river courses through marshland while, west of the Euphrates, the land rises and grades into the semidesert and desert of Syria. The northeast of Iraq is mountainous, with high peaks reaching elevations of 3,600 meters or 11,811 feet.
Iraq has many ancient archaeological sites, and Mesopotamia was the birthplace of such early civilizations as Sumer, Babylon, and Assyria.
Although Iraq is primarily an agricultural country, the only fertile land is in the Tigris and Euphrates’ river basins, where wheat, barley, rice, tobacco, and cotton are grown. The world’s largest producer of dates also comes from this area and is the country’s main export product. Various other fruits are grown, such as apples, olives, figs, grapes, and pomegranates.
Iraq profited from the great oil boom of the 1970s but, during the war with Iran, oil terminals in The Gulf were destroyed, and the Trans-Syrian Pipeline closed. Internal and external conflict and economic sanctions imposed by the international community continue to affect Iraq’s economy severely.
Google maps™ Iraq
In the north, the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers pass through elevated terrain, but near the middle of the country, the rivers enter a vast alluvial plain that extends to the Persian Gulf. Rugged, inhospitable mountains extend to the north and northeast; the Syrian desert is almost completely uninhabited, blankets the west and southwest.
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