FLAGS OF THE COUNTRY
Three equal horizontal bands of red (top), white, and black with three green
five-pointed stars in a horizontal line centered in the white band; the phrase
ALLAHU AKBAR (God is Great) in green Arabic script Allahu to the right of the
middle star and Akbar to the left of the middle star was added in January 1991
during the Persian Gulf crisis; similar to the flag of Syria that has two stars
but no script and the flag of Yemen that has a plain white band; also similar
to the flag of Egypt that has a symbolic eagle centered in the white band.
The four flags of modern Iraq :
- Republic of Iraq 1991 -present
The words Allahu Akbar (God is Great) were added by Saddam
Hussein prior to the start of the Gulf War. The intent was to improve
an Islamic image.
- Republic of Iraq
1963 - 1991
Another change of power brought another change of flags.
The new flag uses the same colours as those of the Kingdom flag and are
inspired by the same poetry. However the symbolism changed and the three
green stars are to show intended unification between Iraq, Egypt and Syria.
After the Baathist takeover of 1968 and the abandonment of the unification
plans, the symbolism of the three stars changed yet again. The new translation
was that the three stars point to the Baathist motto of "Wihda, Hurriyah,
Ishtirrakiyah" (Unity, Freedom, Socialism).
- Republic of Iraq 1958 - 1963
The overthrow of the Monarchy on the
14th July 1958 brought about a change in the flags. Although the colours
in the new flag are mostly the same as those in the old Kingdom flag,
they have other historical inspirations.
The green colour represents the Prophet Mohammed's (SAS) green flag, while
the black is a reminder of the Abbasid's black flags. The white segment
is in remembrance of the Ummayid's white flags. The red ring is a reference
to the blood spilled in the Revolution of 1958. The new addition of the
yellow colour is a sign denoting the Kurdish population of Iraq (yellow
was a colour used by Salladin, the famous Kurdish born leader).
- Kingdom of Iraq 1921 - 1958
The colours for the flag were inspired
by the poetry of Safi il-Deen Al-Hilli. The two seven point stars denote
the 14 provinces of the Kingdom.