History of Iraq
Iraq, historically known as Mesopotamia, is one of the oldest civilizations, dating back to 6000-5000 BCE during the Neolithic Ubaid period. It was the center of several ancient empires including Sumer, Akkadian, Neo-Sumerian, Babylonian, Neo-Assyrian, and Neo-Babylonian. Mesopotamia was a cradle of early writing, literature, sciences, mathematics, laws, and philosophies. The Neo-Babylonian Empire fell to the Achaemenid Empire in 539 BCE.
Iraq then experienced Greek, Parthian, and Roman rule. The region saw significant Arab migration and the formation of the Lakhmid Kingdom around 300 CE. The Arabic name al-ʿIrāq emerged during this period. The Sassanid Empire, ruling the area, was conquered by the Rashidun Caliphate in the 7th century. Baghdad, founded in 762, became a central Abbasid capital and a cultural hub during the Islamic Golden Age.
Post the Mongol invasion in 1258, Iraq's prominence declined under various rulers until becoming part of the Ottoman Empire in the 16th century. Post-World War I, Iraq was under British mandate and then became a kingdom in 1932. A republic was established in 1958. Saddam Hussein's rule from 1968 to 2003 included the Iran-Iraq War and the Gulf War, ending with the 2003 U.S. invasion.