Thursday, April 12, 2007

Al Sarrafiya Bridge

Many Iraqis used to call it the Iron Bridge, but the official name was Al Sarrafiyah bridge. It links al Wazeeriya district east of Baghdad (Risafa) with Al Latifiya district on the west of Baghdad (Karkh).

Al Sarrafiya Bridge was built in 1951by the British when they were occupying Iraq at that time. Some sources indicated that the bridge was meant to be built in Sydney, Australia, but at later date the British decided to build and put the bridge in Baghdad. Some sources indicate that the main purpose for building that bridge was military.

There is who believed that the interlaced steel at the top of the bridge were made to make the shape of the British flag and can be clearly seen from an airplane above! There also some myths about that bridge; that the Imam Al Mahdy had appeared for some people at that bridge. According to historians, Al Sarrafiya Bridge was built on the same location a house for mentally ill people used to be kept in the late 18’th century, and maybe before that date.

The bridge is 450 meter long above the Tigris River and 6 meters wide. There is two meter wide for pedestrians. There is also a railway track on one side of the bridge, and until the 1970 of last century, the train used to pass through crossing between the east and west side of Baghdad. In later years, when railway tracks were suspended, the Iraqi government extended the pedestrian space to include some of that area set for the train tracks.


Swan said...

I hope you don't mind an off-topic comment, but I think this is important:

Re: the Iraq war in general

(also see this post)

Ever since the months prior to the 2003 invasion of Iraq, there have been a few reports in the newspapers that the Central Intelligence Agency was casting aspersions on the intelligence the White House was relying on to justify the war. The CIA has never given a position on whether the war is needed or justified or said that Bush is wrong to go to war. But doesn't it seem much more likely that the CIA is an extremely right wing organization than a left wing one? After all, even if the people working for them and at least a lot of the leadership really wanted a war for their own reasons, there are a lot of reasons for them to not want to tie their credibility to what they know is faulty information. They and their personnel, present and former, could use other means of promoting the Iraq war, and still be motivated to make the statements in the media. If the CIA got behind faulty information, they would have to make a choice between whether they would be involved in scamming the American people and the world once the military had invaded Iraq and no weapons were found- so: 1) Imagine the incredible difficulties involved in pulling off a hoax that weapons of mass destruction were found in Iraq. Imagine all the people you would have to be able to show the weapons to- the inspectors from the UN / the international community, the American press, statesmen, etc. Then imagine the difficulties of substantiating that story to people who would examine it- the lack of witnesses to a production plant that made the weapons or to transportation operations or storage of the weapons during Hussein's regime of them. 2) If the story fell apart upon inspection or the CIA tried not to hoax it at all, imagine the loss of credibility they would suffer. The CIA, it is safe to bet, does not want to be known to the American people as a group that lies to them to send them to war. Even within the CIA there could be disagreement among people about how involved they should be in promoting the war or the neo-con agenda more broadly, so the CIA would have to worry about lying to and managing its own people after trying so hard to get them to trust their superiors in the agency, and perhaps there simply might be too many people in the agency who knew enough about what was going on in Iraq to know if someone was deceiving people to promote this war.

So there is a lot of reason to be cautious against being seen as endorsing what they knew was false intelligence even if they were very strong supporters of going to war.

Through Grace Peace said...

Our Eyes Dream Acid Tears

One land, one people, all asleep
one dream in every mind
all see words of scripture, captive
in a vise of hatred, crushed
distorted words of God, acid
tears, with screaming lips, the captor
feels the kiss of Satan
on his heart.

desertfox said...


with interest I found the blog and was especially fascinated by the photo of the old Iran bridge with the train on.
I am a stamps collector and one of my collecting area are the railway stamps of Iraq which had been in use from 1928 – approximately 1942. I have created a web site dedicated to them at and would like to ask other reader here if they can provide any kind of information related to the Iraq railway system from that time like photos, maps or even stamps and covers transported by the Iraq railway system.

BTW: I had been in Iraq from February 1984 till November 1990 and love the country and its people.

Kind regards
Rainer Fuchs

olivebranch said...

post more sadeeeeqi!!! i enjoy this blog a lot!!!

MixMax said...

I will, my friend, sure will :) you are not the only one who is asking me for that - received many emails, something I am very proud and thankful to all who are encouraging to do so!

New topics will come very soon, promise :)

MixMax said...

Ziad Masoud collected facts and comments on bombing Al Sarrafiya Bridge, in addition to historical background that might be a good read.

imsmall said...


I push myself but toward collapse--
It seems appropriate,
For I go opposite the current
When lies predominate.

My adversary simply is
The notion as pervades
Invasion´s dreams, a cockeyed bliss
To fuel weak escapades.

Traveling opposite to me,
My countrymen, these chaps,
Doing well individually
But flirt with a collapse,

But not of single persons run
Ragged as I am run--
Wholesale collapse, nor no deterrent
To stave what is begun.

Chava said...

People should read this.