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All rights remain with the late Hubert de Vries, the original site owner.






The KIngdom

The Republic



Armed Forces




After having been under Ottoman Rule from 1533, a British Mandate of Mesopotamia was established in the former vilayets of Mosul, Bagdad and Basra by League of Nations mandate in 1918.  Britain imposed a Hāshimite monarchy on Iraq and defined its territorial limits without taking into account the politics of the different ethnic and religious groups in the country, in particular those of the Kurds and the Assyrians to the north. During the British occupation, the Shi'ites and Kurds fought for independence.

Ottoman rule over Iraq lasted until World War I, when the Ottomans sided with Germany and the Central Powers. In the Mesopotamian campaign against the Central Powers, British forces invaded the country and suffered a major defeat at the hands of the Turkish army during the Siege of Kut (1915–16). After the war the Ottoman Empire was divided up, and the British Mandate of Mesopotamia was established by League of Nations mandate. Britain imposed a Hāshimite monarchy on Iraq and defined the territorial limits of Iraq without taking into account the politics of the different ethnic and religious groups in the country, in particular those of the Kurds and the Assyrians to the north. During the British occupation, the Shi'ites and Kurds fought for independence. Iraq also became an oligarchy government at this time.

Although the monarch Faisal I of Iraq was legitimized and proclaimed King by a plebiscite in 1921, nominal independence was only achieved in 1932, when the British Mandate officially ended. Establishment of Arab Sunni domination was followed by Assyrian, Kurdish and rebellions in 1935-1936|Shi'a unrests, which were all brutally suppressed. In 1936, the first military coup took place in the Kingdom of Iraq, as Bakr Sidqi succeeded in replacing the acting Prime Minister with his associate. Multiple coups followed in a period of political instability, peaking in 1941.

During World War II, Iraqi regime of Regent 'Abd al-Ilah was overthrown in 1941 by the Golden Square officers, headed by Rashid Ali. The short living pro-Nazi government of Iraq was defeated in May 1941 by the allied forces in Anglo-Iraqi War. Iraq was later used as a base for allied attacks on Vichy-French held Mandate of Syria and support for the Anglo-Soviet invasion of Iran.


The Kingdom

The first king of Iraq was Sharif Faisal ibn Hussein, fourth son of Husain ibn 'Ali, King of the Hijaz and Grand Sharif of Mecca, the founder of Arab independence. Proclaimed as King of Syria at Damascus by the Arab Grand Committee in March 1920, the French forced his expulsion from after taking control in July. Though his old allies, the British, refused to assist him in Syria and supported France instead, they did not entirely forget their obligations. Within a year, he received nomination as their preferred candidate for the throne of Mesopotamia, a Nations Mandated Territory out of which they intended to create an independent Arab kingdom. Sharif Faisal secured a large majority of the votes cast in a plebiscite and was proclaimed King of Iraq as Faisal I on 23rd August 1921. A British protectorate continued for a further six years, until independence on 14th December 1927, the British Mandate only offcially ending in 1931.

Faisal I did not enjoy his new Kingdom very long and died in Switzerland in 1933 leaving his young and inexperienced and twenty-one year old only son, Ghazi to succeed him. Under his reign Arab Sunni domination was followed by Assyrian, Kurdish unrests and rebellions in 1935-1936 Shi'a, which were all brutally suppressed. In 1936 a military coup took place by Bakr Sidqi who became the effective ruler but was assassinated the next year. When Ghazi died in a tragic motor accident in 1939 he was succeeded by his only son, the three year old Faisal II. The new King began his reign under the regency of his maternal uncle, the twenty-six year old Prince Abd al-Ilah.


The Regent, partly out of inexperience and partly out of natural sympathy, leaned heavily on British advisers. His Prime Minister for much of this time was Nuri es-Said, the Anglophile former veteran of the Arab revolt. Within a short period, nationalist elements abhorred both figures. When war broke out in 1939, they looked increasingly to Germany for salvation. Seizing their chance, they staged a military coup d'etat and forced the Regent and government to flee the country on 10th April 1941. They returned on the 24th of May and re-established control with British military help

A new constitution nominated Prince Abd al-Ilah as Heir Apparent and Crown Prince in 1943.

In February 1958, King Hussein of Jordan and `Abd al-Ilāh proposed a union of Hāshimite monarchies to counter the recently formed Egyptian-Syrian union. The prime minister Nuri as-Said wanted Kuwait to be part of the proposed Arab-Hāshimite Union. Shaykh `Abd-Allāh as-Salīm, the ruler of Kuwait, was invited to Baghdad to discuss Kuwait's future. This policy brought the government of Iraq into direct conflict with Britain, which did not want to grant independence to Kuwait. At that point, the monarchy found itself completely isolated. Nuri as-Said was able to contain the rising discontent only by resorting to ever greater political oppression.

On 14th July 1958, a single division of the Iraqi Army led by General Qasim, attacked the palace and overthrew the government. Before any loyal elements of the army, the British or the Jordanians could intervene, the young King, the Crown Prince and their female relatives and aides were gunned down in cold blood outside the palace, under the pretence of a truce. The bodies of several prominent figures were dragged through the streets, and mutilated in a barbaric fashion


Republic of Iraq

The new government proclaimed Iraq to be a republic and rejected the idea of a union with Jordan. Iraq's activity in the Baghdad Pact ceased. General Abd al-Karim Qasim, the leader of the Free Officer movement which had overthrown the king, supported joining the pan-Arab state (UAR) at first, but changed his position after he took power. Several members of the Free Officer movements were also members of the Ba'ath Party. The Ba'ath Party considered the Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser, the leader of the pan-Arab movement, to be the leader most likely to succeed, and supported Iraq's joining the union. The change from the pan-Arab policy to the Iraq first policy displeased several pan-Arab organisations, especially the Ba'ath Party. Qasim was overthrown in the February 1963 Iraqi coup d'état, a coup allegedly supported by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and led on the ground by Ahmed Hassan al-Bakr, a fellow Ba'athist. Abdul Salam Arif became the President and Hassan al-Bakr became the Prime Minister. Ali Salih al-Sadi, Secretary General of the Iraqi Regional Command of the Ba'ath Party, became Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior. As a result a pan-Arab policy was resumed.

On April 13, 1966, President Abdul Salam Arif was succeeded by his brother, General Abdul Rahman Arif who in his turn was succeeded by Ahmed Hassan al Bakr in 1968.

In July 1979, President Ahmed Hassan al-Bakr resigned, and his chosen successor, General Saddam Hussein, assumed the offices of both President and Chairman of the Revolutionary Command Council. His regime ended when in March 2003 the United States and the United Kingdom, with military aid from other nations, invaded Iraq. Since then Iraq has been occupied by western military forces united in the Multinational Forces and -Corps and from 2010 by the United States Forces in Iraq. An Interim Government was established in 2004 and was succeeded by a Transitional Government in 2005. In 2006 this was replaced by a new Iraqi Government.




Al Mamlakah al Iraqiya - Kingdom of Iraq



British Mandated Territory of the League of Nations



Hashimid Dynasty


Faisal I

Ghazi I

Faisal II





During his short reign in Syria the royal emblem of King Faisal consisted of a seven-pointed star surrounded by a garland or placed on a crowned shield surrounded by a garland. After his proclamation as a king of Iraq the kingdom was represented by a flag of three breadths black, white and green with a red triangle at the mast. Such flags were displayed at his coronation in 1921. The flag was changed in 1924 into a flag of the same three breadts but with a red trapezium at the mast, charged with two white seven-pointed stars.

A coat of arms and achievement was adopted in 1931, anticipating the end of British Mandate. It is:



Arms: A landscape  showing the confluence of the Euphrates and the Tigris, harged with three palm-trees, the Hakkari mountains in the distance and a spear and a sword in saltire in base.

Crest: Two seven-pointed stars Gules, each charged with a disc Argent, voided Sable and radiating Vert.

Supporters: D.: A babylonian lion. S.: An arabian horse standing on seven ears of wheat and a branch of cotton in saltire

Motto: JUSTICE IS THE FOUNDATION OF THE STATE in arab and kufic script in chief, and the date 1336 (= 1918 AD) in arab numerals in base, on an ornamented bordure around the shield.

Mantle: Gules, fringed and tasseled Or, lined per fess Sable, Argent and Vert, and crowned with the Royal Iraqi Crown.

adopted 03.03.1931


The stars represent the Kurds and the Arabs like the two seven-pointed stars on the flag. The mantle is in the (Hashemite-) colours of the flag: black, white, green and red.


Probably the idea of the palmtrees and the river is inspired by ancient Assyrian paintings from Nimrud depicting a tree within a river basin and supported by two bulls. [1]

The ears of wheat and the branch of cotton represent the main trade-crops.


Al Djumhuriyah al Iraqiyah al Dimuqratiyah al Shabiyah



Law No.101 of 1959 implemented ‘The Innovation of the Symbol of the Revolution of 14 July 1958 (The Eternal Iraqi Revolution)’. This symbol was introduced to replace the crown that had appeared on previous Iraqi emblems and badges used in the armed forces; although it could also be used as required by other orders and regulations. Thus, the symbol is predominantly used in the context of the military and its use on the banknotes is slightly incongruous. The description of the symbol is in Article 3 of the law:


‘The Symbol of the Revolution of 14 July 1958 (the Eternal Iraqi Revolution) shall consist of the word the People” embraced on the low left part by an Arabian Sword and on its right by a Kurdish dagger. At the top of them shall be the 14th July Torch which inspires the people [with] the strength of their rapid advance and which symbolizes freedom which the people gained back on 14th July 1958. “The people”, the sword and the dagger, and the 14th July Torch all shall form an oval relief ornament. In the middle of the ornament, an equilateral triangle, in the inside of which the character “J is written in the Kufi Script as symbol of the strength of the army and its incorporation with the strength of the people.’


The letter ‘J’ in the centre of the triangle is the first letter for the Arabic word for ‘army’, which is ‘Jaysh’. The Arabic word for ‘the People’ is ‘al-sha’ab’ and the word is written in a decorative form that constitutes most of the design. It is a common Arabic device to take a word and create a design or pattern from the word, as has been done in this case.[2]


On 14 July 1959 a new emblem was adopted. It is:


Emblem: A coghwheel Azure charged with a ear of wheat Or on a disc Sable, surrounded by a bordure Argent with a rim, the motto ‘THE REPUBLIC OF IRAQ’ in chief and the date 14 July 1959 in base between two swords per  bordure, Sable.

Supporter: The Akkadian sun of eight points Gules and eight triple rays wavy Or.

 adopted 14.07.1959


The ‘Emblem of the Iraq’ was introduced by Republican Law No.57 of 1959. The translation in english of  “Article 1:  ‘Description of the Emblem’”, reads as follows:


“The Emblem of the Iraqi Republic shall consist of a circle from which eight beams diffuse. Each beam consists of three stretchings, the colour of golden yellow. Between every two beams a deep red projection of a star emerges. Amidst that circle a blue area exists. In the centre of which there is a golden spike surrounded by a black wheel with eight rectangular projections at the inner side, encircled by a white ring that extends till the black circumference. In the middle of this white ring there is an Arabic sword that embraces the wheel at the left hand-side, and a Kurdish dagger that embraces it at the right hand-side. Between their two tops the phrase ‘THE REPUBLIC OF IRAQ’ shall be written in Kufi writing, and between their hilts there is written the phrase ‘JULY 14’ and ‘1958’ underneath, in Kufi writing, too. The colour of the sword, the dagger and the Kufi writing is black.’


Mesopotamian Memorial Stone

Pouring water to a palmtree before a seated ruler

Limestone, beginning 2nd millennium B.C.

Brought to Susa as a war booty in the 12th century B.C..

 (Excavations of J. De Morgan (Sb7) Musée du Louvre, Paris)


The emblem is directly borrowed from two Accadian memorial stones, now in the Louvre in Paris, on which such an emblem is represented.[3] Officially, under the decrees of the Iraqi Republic, the sun represented:

a) The liberty, which Iraq regained by the July 14 Revolution by the time of sunrise

b) The Emblem of Justice that the Ancient Iraqis adopted before Christ

c) Naming Iraq after its old name ‘ARAQI’ which denoted ‘the country of the sun.’

The eight-pointed, or ‘octagonal’, star officially denoted ‘the Arabic star which is used in Arabic architecture’ and identified Iraq as part of the Arab Nation. The red colour of the star denoted the Iraqi Revolution of 14 July.

The Arabic sword and the Kurdish dagger were symbols chosen to unite the two peoples who inhabited Iraq. The ‘golden spike is in fact an ear of wheat and represented agriculture and life, while the black wheel with projections is evidently a cog, as it represents industry.”  [4]


Al Djumhuriyah al Iraqiyah



When the pro pan arbaic faction had won by the overthrow and assassination of the Qasim-regime a new flag was adopted in 1963. In 1965  the so-called Eagle of Saladin of the United Arab Republic was also adopted as an emblem for Iraq, its breast charged with a shield of the colours of the Iraqi flag and the motto adapted to the Iraqi Republic. Since then the Eagle and motto have never been changed but for the shield which was adapted when the flag was changed


Arms: Tierced per pale Gules, Argent and Sable, the second charged with three five-pointed stars per pale Vert

Supporter: The Eagle of Saladin Or. winged Sable.

Motto:  Al Djumhuriah al Iraqiyah in neskh or kufic script on a cartouche Vert within a frame Or.

 adopted 02.06.1965


At the occasion of the Gulf War the flag was changed  by adding the words Alahu Akbar between the stars. On the shield of the achievement the colours and the text were arranged horizontally. 


Arms: Tierced per fess Gules, Argent and Sable, the second charged with three five-pointed stars per pale and the words Alahu Akbar in neskh script Vert.

Supporter: The Eagle of Saladin Or. winged Sable.

Motto:  Al Djumhuriah al Iraqiyah in kufic script on a cartouche Vert within a frame Or.

adopted 13.01.1991


International & American Occupation





The Multi-National Force – Iraq (MNF–I) was a military command, led by the United States, which was responsible for Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Multi-National Force – Iraq replaced the previous force, Combined Joint Task Force 7, on 15 May 2004, and was later itself reorganized into its successor, United States Forces – Iraq, on 1 January 2010. The Force was significantly reinforced during the Iraq War troop surge of 2007. As of August 2009, all non-U.S. coalition members had withdrawn from Iraq.


Seal 15.05.2004-01.01.2010


On a background Sable:

Arms Argent, the map of Iraq Vert, charged with a 7-pointed faceted star Or, two swords in saltire, hilts Gules in chief, proper, a garland of two palm-leaves in base, charged with a Lamassu Or.


Seal 01.01.2010-31.12.2011


On a background Sable:

Arms: As before



On a seven-pointed faceted star rayonnant two swords in saltire charged with the winged, man headed bull Lamassu passant, Or


Sable, two swords in saltire, hilts Gules in chief, proper, a garland of two palm-leaves in base and a seven pointed faceted star Or in chief, charged with a Lamassu Or




Multi-National Corps – Iraq (MNC-I) was a formerly multinational, then United States only, army corps created on 15 May 2004, fighting the Iraq War. Its superior body, the Multi-National Force-Iraq (MNF-I) had replaced Combined Joint Task Force 7 on May 15, 2004. The change was made due to "concerns that had existed for some period of time, that the Combined Joint Task Force 7 headquarters, was not sufficient to handle the range of military operations in Iraq, including peace support, civil military operations, and at the same time conduct strategic engagement such as talking to the sheiks and talking to the political authorities."

Multi-National Force-Iraq was established to handle strategic level issues while Multi-National Corps-Iraq, a subordinate command, directed the tactical battle. A number of US Army corps headquarters have rotated into Iraq to provide the MNC-I headquarters. Also created under MNF-I was the Multi-National Security Transition Command - Iraq (MNSTC-I), which primarily directed the reconstruction of Iraqi security forces. With the planned drawdown of US forces from Iraq per the Status of Forces Agreement and President Barack Obama's announced timeline, Multi-National Corps-Iraq will ultimately merge back into its parent command of MNF-I, which will be renamed United States Force - Iraq (USF-I) following the withdrawal of all remaining coalition partners from the country.

As of mid-2005, the 1st Corps Support Command based at Logistics Support Area Anaconda at Balad, Iraq, was providing theatre logistics support.



Sleeve patch


Coalition Provisional Authority



Iraq has been governed by the Coalition Provisional Authority since the April 2003 overthrow of Saddam Hussein and his Ba’athist Regime through the Operation Iraqi Freedom.


Seal of the CPA 2003-‘04


Emblem: The map of Iraq charged with a five-pointed star for Bagdad, surrounded by fifteen five-pointed stars

Motto: Security Liberty Equality Justice in english and arab.

Legend:  COALITION PROVISONAL AUTHORTY  in english and arab.


The Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) (Arabic: ةتقؤلا فالتئالا ةطلس) was established as a transitional government following the invasion of Iraq by the United States, and its allies members of the Multinational force in Iraq which was formed to oust the government of Saddam Hussein in 2003. Citing UN Security Council Resolution 1483 (2003), and the laws of war, the CPA vested itself with executive, legislative, and judicial authority over the Iraqi government from the period of the CPA's inception on April 21, 2003, until its dissolution on June 28, 2004.





Anticipating the transfer of authority from the CPA to an Iraqi Interim Government, a new flag and emblem for the Republic were approved by the Iraqi National Council on 26 April 2004. The flag, designed by Rifat al-Chaderchi, an iraqi artist and son of a member of the Council, living in London, consisted of four breadths white, blue, yellow and blue, 8:1:2:1, the white charged with a blue crescent.

At the same time the national emblem of 14.07.1959 was readopted.


In the flag the colour white was for peace and a new start, the crescent was for Islam, the colour blue for the Turkmen minority. The two blue breadths in base symbolize the rivers Euphrates and Tigris and the Muslim sunnites and shiites, and the yellow breadth in between the Kurds. According to the Council  ‘they together symbolize unity’.

The flag met with strong opposition as it symbolized the division of the country into ethnic groups, a reflection of the policy of Abd al-Karim Qasim and a negation of the pan-arabic doctrine. In particular the element representing the Kurds (recently subjected in the Kurdish-Iraqi War) was strongly resented because it was thought that ‘they would behave like lions with their own symbol on the flag’. Also the colours were judged to be contrary to islamic tradition (in which the colour blue was the colour of the christians and yellow the colour of the jews).

As a result of the opposition the arms of 1991 were restored, the motto Alahu Akbar now written in kufic script:



Arms: Tierced per fess Gules, Argent and Sable, the second charged with three five-pointed stars per pale and the words Alahu Akbar in kufic script Vert.

Supporter: The Eagle of Saladin Or. winged Sable.

Motto:  Al Djumhuriah al Iraqiyah in kufic script on a cartouche Vert within a frame Or.

adopted 28.06.2004


Iraqi Interim Government



The emblem of the Iraqi Interim Government was derived from the emblem of the CPA. It consisted of the map of Iraq, its colours gradually changing from red to green. On the left (dexter) are the three palms of the Royal arms for Mesopotamia and the peaks of the Hakkari mountains. On the right (sinister) there is a yellow sun issuant

The title on the emblem reads: ‘Iraqi Interim Government’ in arab in chief and in kurdish in base   .


Seal of the Iraqi Interim Government 2004-‘05


Iraqi Transitional Government




The emblem of the Iraqi Transitional Assembly was the same as for the Iraqi Imterim Government, the legend changed accordingly and surrounded by an octogonal frame.

The arms of the Republic were changed in January 2008 by omitting the green stars in the white breadth.


Arms: Tierced per fess Gules, Argent and Sable, the second charged with the words Alahu Akbar in kufic script Vert.

Supporter: The Eagle of Saladin Or. winged Sable.

Motto:  Al Djumhuriah al Iraqiyah in kufic script on a cartouche Vert within a frame Or.

 adopted 22.01.2008

Æ see illustration in the head of this essay.


Islamic state of Iraq  /  دولة العراق الإسلامية 

15.10.2006 – 08.04.2013


The Islamic State of Iraq (دولة العراق الإسلامية‎‎ Dawlat al-ʿIrāq al-ʾIslāmiyyah) was a militant Islamist group that aimed to establish an Islamic state in Sunni, Arab-majority areas of Iraq during the Iraq War.

ISI traces its origins to Jama'at al-Tawhid wal-Jihad, which was formed by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi in Jordan in 1999. Al-Zarqawi led the group, under numerous name changes, until his death in June 2006. Jama'at participated in the Iraqi insurgency (2003–‘11) following the 2003 invasion of Iraq by Western forces, and on 17 October 2004 al-Zarqawi pledged allegiance to Osama bin Laden's al-Qaeda network; and the group became known as Tanzim Qaidat al-Jihad fi Bilad al-Rafidayn. In January 2006, Tanzim and five other Iraqi insurgent groups formed the Mujahideen Shura Council, which on 15 October 2006 merged to form Islamic State of Iraq. [5] At their height in 2006–2008, ISI had military units or strongholds in Mosul and in the governorates of Baghdad, Al Anbar and Diyala, and they claimed Baqubah as their capital.

An alleged logo of the Mujahideen Shura Council,

consisting of three hands holding aloft the black flag of jihad. [6]


1:1 also 2:3


The variant of the black standard used by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, and before that by Al-Shabaab (since c. 2006) depicts the second phrase of the shahada in the form of a depiction of the supposedly historical seal of Muhammad. The white circle represents the seal, enclosing the three words, الله رسول محمد (allāh[i] rasūl[u] muḥammad[un] "Muhammad is the prophet of God"). Note that this word order is different from the second part of the conventional form of the shahada, ''muḥammad[un] rasūl[u] allāh[i] .


The SITE (Search for International Terrorist Entities) website on 23 January 2007 stated:

"The Islamic State of Iraq issued a document titled: 'The Legality of the Flag in Islam,' which contains the image of its flag and information to its symbolism, today, Tuesday, January 23, 2007. Text on the flag reading, 'No God, but Allah, and Muhammad is Allah’s Messenger,' are the words contained on the flag of the Prophet Muhammad that he carried into battle and handed to generations of bearers. The Islamic State provides evidence and legitimacy for this banner from Islamic scholars, and goes into detail regarding opinions of the flag’s material, title, and significance. According to the group the circular shape matches the ring stamp of the Prophet found on many scripts, and the order of the words are to indicate the supremacy of Allah over the Messenger." Cited by Ivan Sache at Flags of the World on 18 February 2007 [7]


On 7 April 2013 Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi who succeeded the leaders Abu Ayyub al-Masri, and ISI leader Abu Omar al-Baghdadi who were killed on 18 April 2010, transformed ISI into the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (لدولة الإسلامية في العراق والشام  ad-Dawlah al-Islāmiyah fī 'l-ʿIrāq wa-sh-Shām) which is still active today  (2017).

Seal of the ISIL


The Iraqi Intelligence Service



Iraq used multiple intelligence services to collect on the Regime’s various international and local concerns. The Iraqi Intelligence Service was the former Regime’s largest intelligence service; the Directorate of General Military Intelligence and the Directorate of General Security supported the Regime on a smaller scale.


The Iraqi Intelligence Service (Jihaz Al-Mukhabarat Al-Amma), also known as the Mukhabarat, General Directorate of Intelligence, or Party Intelligence, was the main state intelligence organization in Iraq under Saddam Hussein. The IIS was primarily concerned with international intelligence collection and analysis but also performed many activities inside Iraq.


The General Security Directorate (GSD) (مديرية الامن العامة, Mudiriyat al-Amn al-Amma) was the intelligence agency of Iraq. It was announced by interim Prime Minister Iyad Allawi at a press conference in July 2004 in a climate of widespread violence by terrorist groups and the Iraqi insurgency. Although details on its organisation were not made clear at the time, the General Security Directorate's designated mission was to "infiltrate and annihilate Iraq's tenacious insurgency".







Present seal of the Ministry of the Interior


The Ministry of Interior (MOI) is the government body charged with overseeing policing and border control in Iraq. The MOI comprises several agencies, including the Iraqi Police, Highway Patrol, Traffic Department, Emergency Response Unit, Explosive Ordnance Disposal Unit, and Department of Border Enforcement

Royal Iraqi police badge until 1958




The Federal Police (FP), sometimes called the National Police, is a gendarmerie-type paramilitary force designed to bridge the gap between the local police and the army. This allows the MOI to project power across provinces and maintain law and order, while an effective community police is developed. Although called police, the force has been trained primarily for military operations.


Iraqi National Security Service


Armed Forces


In addition to the regular armed forces, Iraq's state security system consists of a number organizations charged with a wide variety of security functions. Little is publicly known about many of these paramilitary and police organizations, but their importance is undisputed. They are coordinated through the National Security Council, chaired by Saddam Hussein and usually presided over by Qusai Hussein. Membership in the NSC includes;

  • Iraqi Army
  • Special Security Service
  • General Intelligence Directorate
  • Military Intelligence
  • General Security Service
  • Office of the Presidential Palace

The NSC, headquarterd at the Presidential Palace in Baghdad, meets on a weekly basis.


National Security Council badge


Ministry of Defence


Ministry of Defence Present




Presidential & Republican Guard 1964-2003


The Republican Guard were the elite troops of the Iraqi army directly reporting to Saddam Hussein


Ground forces emblem after 2003


Sleeve patch (coat of arms), 2012

Sleeve patch (coat of arms) present




Navy emblem (until 1958?)

Emblem until 2003


Emblem after 2003


Air Force


The Royal Iraqi Air Force (RIrAF) considered its founding day as 22 April 1931, when the first pilots flew in from training in the United Kingdom. Before the creation of the new air force, the RAF Iraq Command was in charge of all British Armed Forces elements in Iraq in the 1920s and early 1930s


The Iraq Levies (also known as the Assyrian Levies  was the first Iraqi military force established by the British in British controlled Iraq.

The Levies distinguished themselves in May 1941 during the Anglo-Iraqi War and were also used in other theatres of WWII. It was disbanded in May 1955 when control of RAF Habbaniya and RAF Shaibah was handed to Iraq.

Royal Air Force Levies Iraq

Active: 1921-1955

emblem authorized October 1949




Air Force emblem until 2003 (?)

Coat of arms


Seal 2003


Roundel 1931-2004

Roundel 2004-present



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 © Hubert de Vries 2017-05-23




[1] As preserved in the British Museum and in the Iraqi Museum in Bagdad.

[2] www.pjsymes.com.au/articles/CBI-First.htm

[3] The other one: Stèle de victoire de Naram-Sin, roi d’Akkad.Calcaire gréseux. Epoque d’Akkad, vers 2250 av. J.-C. Apportée de la ville de Sippar à Suse, Iran, en butin de guerre, au XIIe s. Av. J.-C. La Stèle de Victoire de Naram-Sin a été restaurée en 1992 avec le concours du Dr. et de Mme Raymond Sackler.

[4] www.pjsymes.com.au/articles/CBI-First.htm

[5] http://www.aymennjawad.org/14151/the-islamic-state-of-iraq-and-al-sham

[6] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mujahideen_Shura_Council_(Iraq)

[7] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_Standard

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