20 years after U.S. invasion, young Iraqis see signs of hope

News Summary

  • More than a dozen social media influencers were arrested recently in a crackdown on “immoral” content, and this month authorities said they would enforce a long-dormant law banning alcohol imports.In 2019-20, fed-up Iraqis, especially young people, protested across the country against corruption and lack of basic services.
  • The world’s perception of Iraq as a war-torn country is frozen in time, he told The Associated Press in an interview.Iraq is rich; peace has returned, he said, and there are opportunities ahead for young people in a country experiencing a population boom.
  • Two years later, the CIA’s chief weapons inspector reported no stockpiles of nuclear, chemical or biological weapons were ever found.The war deposed a dictator whose imprisonment, torture and execution of dissenters kept 20 million people in fear for a quarter of a century.
  • In dozens of recent interviews from Baghdad to Fallujah, young Iraqis deplored the loss of stability that followed Saddam’s downfall — but they said the war is in the past, and many were hopeful about nascent freedoms and opportunities to pursue their dreams.
  • He has helped direct millions of dollars in government funding to rebuild the city, which experienced repeated waves of fighting, including two U.S. military campaigns to rid the city of al-Qaida and the Islamic State group.
  • They returned 20 years later for this special report on how the country has changed over two decades — especially for its young people.
BAGHDAD (AP) On the banks of the Tigris River one recent evening, young Iraqi men and women in jeans and sneakers danced with joyous abandon to a local rap star as a vermillion sun set behind them. I [+18479 chars]