Turbas, thumbs up and other Iraqi images

Posted by ESC on April 10, 2003

I thought this BBC article was interesting and wanted to share. It clears up some "mysteries." For example, on U.S. television the camera kept zooming in on a person in the crowd holding up a disc. And the article says: "The discs, called turbas, are made of special clay, which Shia Muslims see as holy. The Shia were repressed by Saddam, and under his government, having a clay disc would have been seen as opposing Saddam." Mystery solved!

And concerning "thumbs up": "This was originally an insult in the Middle East. But since the first Gulf War, many Iraqis have started using it as a sign of co-operation and freedom."