Army Day in Iraq

Observed in Iraq every year as a public holiday on January 6th, Iraqi Army Day is a day that commemorates the activation of the Army of Iraq on this date in 1921. The Iraqi Army was created in the image of the British Army, which was in control of the country at that time.

Over the years since it was created, the Iraqi Army was involved in six Coup d’etats just between 1936 and 1941 alone, and they played a crucial role in the development of the state of Iraq. This is a day that not only celebrates the army of Iraq but also encourages people to sign up and join it.

The History Of Army Day In Iraq

When the Ottoman Empire collapsed following the end of World War I, Mesopotamia (now known as Iraq in modern times) was administered by the British government. The British had quite a job on their hands, however, as they had to deal with different ethnic and religious groups — many of whom were unhappy for being under the control of Great Britain.

In 1920, an uprising began in Iraq and Great Britain was forced to commit troops to contain it. The British deployed over 100,000 British and Indian troops to the country between 1920 and 1922. They were able to put down the uprising but it cost them many British lives and over £40 million.

Since Great Britain was already in a financial bind following WWI, they felt that they couldn’t afford any more extensive campaigns in Iraq, so they decided to create the Iraqi military and base it off on the model of Great Britain’s army. This occurred in January of 1921.

Observing Army Day In Iraq

This holiday is mainly observed in the ranks of the Iraqi Army, but it’s also used as a recruiting tool to show the public the importance of maintaining the army’s budget. It’s also a day off for the general public, and many schools, businesses, and government agencies are closed.

Where is it celebrated?
Iraq (National holiday)
When is it?
This year (2023)
January 6 Friday
Next year (2024)
January 6 Saturday
Last year (2022)
January 6 Thursday