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An Average Iraqi

An Average Iraqi is just a fictional character whose....well, fictional. I will use this character to make a comparison between him and real human beings like myself or any one else.

Location:Baghdad, Iraq

My name is Hassan Kharrufa. I am a 20 year old Iraqi student. I study civil engineering at the Department of Building and Construction at Al-Jami3a Al-Taknologia (The Tecknology Univirsity), Baghdad, Iraq.

Iraqi Bloggers BiographyUpdated November 11

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Internet in Iraq

  It feels really weird sitting in an internet cafe in Baghdad, it seems that the Iraqis in internet cafes are very interested in privacy, the computer am sitting on right now has got to plastic plates on the sides of it's monitor to prevent any other user from seeing what I do, but it is equipped with anything an internet surfer or chatter might need, beginning from fast internet and ending in a webcam. It has got multiple other internet programs, which are shortcutted all in the desktop. Some are user installed and some are installed by the owner of the cafe.

  Now this brings me to another chapter of the Average Iraqi Life. How does the Average Iraqi handles internet. Most of the new young men of the country know how to use internet, and have at least a Yahoo email accounts. Strange as it is, most Iraqis begin their internet experiment with chatting, and the majority of them doesn't do anything but chat, entering user rooms, clubs, political debates sometimes, even fightclubs... Then some of them, those who are able to speak English might find their ways into other areas of the internet, like yahoo groups, skype, kazaa and blogger. The names I mentioned are just samples, some find their other ways, it depends on the tastes of the Iraqi. The strange thing is I find that most of most of my friends who know the address of my blog, does read it, but they don't dare blog, they don't even dare comment, even if they find something really provoking.

  The only way to get internet before the war was by Dial Up. But it was censored, every web location you go to is noted and everything you do in it in known, and the dial up was really hard to reach, because it was the only number in Iraq, and it still is. After the war things changed; First there was a few other dial up numbers which you connect to them free, since it was still chaos and the U.S. wanted to maintain a good image. Then those disappeared and the dial up system came back, but it was different, much expanded and not censored, and then the wireless entered Iraq, it is a satellite connection networked around multiple subscribed users, but it is not very stable. In my case we have been to two providers until now and thinking of trying a third, not satisfied with the service so far.

  Today I went to the university, by the way I had succeeded my exams and I came fifth on my class. In a class of almost sixty students only eighteen of them passed from first attempt, not a very good figure, it was almost twice the number last year. Well as some of you might have noted from the comments of my last post, I have became 20 on Thursday, and when I got my first congratulation I had completely forgotten that this was my birthday, I usually see it coming days ago, but this time I was the last to know. Anyway, thank you all.

Note: This post has been emailed to my Email List subscribers.


Blogger Doug said...

Congratulations on passing your exams, and thank you for your very interesting blog.

12:03 AM  
Blogger Mad Canuck said...

Hey Hassan,

Congratulations on your exams, I hope you are doing well. It must feel weird writing a post in an Internet cafe when you're used to doing it from the privacy of your own house. Anyway, hopefully inconvenience will be temporary for you.

Stay safe!

10:16 AM  
Blogger Victoria said...

Congratulations on your exam grade.
And Happy Birthday!

9:53 PM  
Blogger TallDave said...

Congrats on your exams -- and your freedom.

Best of luck with the next rounds of exams and elections.

10:32 PM  
Blogger cile said...

Hi Hassan,
yes my congrats too for your 20th birthday (i'll probably be the last here :) and the exams.
about your friends, do you have any idea why they are not into blogging or asking questions/commenting on your blog? (try to interview them? :))
best to you, take care

10:03 PM  
Blogger Ninnevah said...


but i guess your friends have the right to be worried about this stuff, not many iraqi blogs write about politics, thats the danger zone.

well, congrats on passing, i am so proud of every iraqi who gets thro university over there, keep it up.


7:33 PM  
Blogger olivebranch said...

As we see from poor Khalid's experience http://giveusourkhalidback.blogspot.com/

blogging in iraq can be dangerous. But everyone should do it. Tell the world ALL your stories and watch the US Govt' sh*t their pants when we show how poorly the US are training Iraqi Security forces like the Mukhabarat.

Pce+Prayers for you all

3:37 PM  
Blogger Ninnevah said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

11:46 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rember Give me liberty or give me death. Freedom of speech and the press. Without the right to say and wtite what is on a persons mind the world is not worth anything. Larry C.

5:47 PM  
Anonymous Matthew said...

Congratulations on your exams and thank you for such a great blog, keep up the good work!

10:55 PM  
Blogger fdusiaoadaa said...

The internet makes life easier. I would like to see more people in Iraq communicating with Americans directly and using talking skills instead of weapons. The internet has a lot of good information and provides many ways to make money. I hope to see more struggling countries tap into the internet and use it for positive learning to solve what other countries have already struggled with.

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