Iraqi Government launches YouTube channel

The government of Iraq has taken the oddly progressive step of launching an official YouTube channel, where people can tune in to watch all sorts of exciting things like debates, and behind-the-scenes footage, or what they call 'informal chats'. Whether they’ll cover assassination attempts on politicians who don’t suck up enough to warlords or the clean up after a car bomb is up for debate. Still it’s certainly something worth noting, especially if it helps bring people round to the country’s political class (keeping in mind the ability to criticise of course, democracy fans).

‘The Internet presents all of us with the biggest communications opportunity of our time,’ said Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki. ‘Through the Iraqi Government's YouTube channel we will publicize important services and programs, share news, give progress updates, engage with people both at home and abroad on important issues and showcase potential investment opportunities.’

‘New media tools like YouTube help provide a level of access and transparency that has never been possible before in government,’ said Eric Schmidt, CEO of Google. ‘It is exciting to see the Iraqi Government embrace online video as a new way to connect and engage with the Iraqi people and citizens of the Web around the world.’ It would probably have been funnier with Chemical Ali stinking up the place, right?

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