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Iraq cultural scene deteriorates further

In light of the deteriorating security situation, Iraq is facing a dire cultural reality, while the Ministry of Culture is engaged in building cultural houses and palaces.
General view of the famous Al-Zahawi cafe, a meeting point for intellectuals and bohemians of the Iraqi society at the beginning of the century, in central Baghdad June 5, 2003. [The city is struggling back to life more than seven weeks after U.S.-led forces toppled Saddam Hussein, but chaos still ensues. ] - RTXM0PV
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Not only is Iraq plunged in political turmoil, but the country's cultural scene is also troubled. Iraq is rife with governmental corruption, underdevelopment, sectarianism and backwardness in scientific progress, which all come as a result of the absence of an active cultural role. Iraq’s culture is riddled with crises that have deprived it of the ability to influence and create change, while the voices of intellectuals and the cultured continue to be drowned out by thuds of violence.

Despite this, the Ministry of Culture believes that it is not failing in its duties and continues to implement projects according to pre-ordained plans. In a comment on this reality, the undersecretary of the Ministry of Culture, Taher al-Hamoud, said the deterioration of the cultural situation in Iraq partly rested on the shoulders of Iraqi intellectuals themselves, and that the administrative problems that have existed in the ministry since the Saddam Hussein regime were responsible for the situation. Meanwhile, Iraqi intellectuals do not believe that their ministry is offering solutions, and is itself part of the problem.

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