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            The Middle East country I visited for 7 days was Iraq. Although research and articles did not suggest that Americans go there, I took a plane that landed in Baghdad, which is the capital of Iraq. Once I arrived I took a taxi to a home in the city. I stayed with a family. This was arranged through an international foreign exchange organization. Right away I noticed some major differences in their clothing, culture, climate, geography, and activities.
             The weather or climate in Iraq was much different than the weather in the United States. For example, on the plane there was a slight delay because of a strong sandstorm. Because the highest average precipitation is only .3-. 7in. It is very dry in Iraq. I wanted to travel in weather that is warm but not too warm. So I decided to go in early May during this time the average temperature is between 68-96 deg. Later in the summer the temperature is as high as 110 deg. During the winter, in the regions toward the north there is some occasional snow. Temperature can drop as low as 25 deg. in Iraq.
             I also noticed that the geography varies. There mainly consists of broad plains and was sandy in some areas. There are marsh and huge flood areas near the borders of Turkey and Iran. There are also mountains along these borders.
             There are three words that describe the culture of Iraq the best. They are interesting, degrading, and different when compared to the United States. The main language in Iraq is Arabic. Other languages include Kurdish, Armenian, and Assyrian. The religion in Iraq that is practiced the most is Muslim. Muslim woman are treated as 2nd class citizens. I observed some of the Muslim women walking behind their husbands and clothed from head to toe, which would have to be very uncomfortable with the hot climate. This was hard for me to accept since women generally have equal rights in the United States. Also you need to remember who Iraq's dictator is, Saddam Hussein.

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