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The horoscope for the Republic of Iraq

Bill Sheeran - posted on Sat Sep 14th, 2002 at 13:17:50 EDT to the Urania website

This is the first article that I wrote about the Iraq situation which was brewing to boiling point during the second half of 2002. The US-led invasion happened on March 20th 2003, six months after this was written. The focus is on the horoscope for the foundation of the Republic of Iraq, one of the national charts that might be significant for following how the drama would unfold. The reference below to transits happening early in 2003 in fact highlighted what turned out to be the timing of the US-led invasion, which coincided with the transits mentioned.

[Note: If you see next to any link in the text, clicking on the link will bring up the relevant horoscope in a separate small window.]

A base chart for Iraq
I am assuming that the Bush Administration will achieve their goal of regime change in Iraq one way or another, and that Saddam Hussein's days as regional dictator are numbered. It is most likely that this will require prosecuting the military option, despite reservations from the most of the rest of the world regarding legality in international law and the possible consequences for the region as a whole.

There will be a number of horoscopes relevant for the Iraqi side of the equations in the coming conflict. Rather than list them all here, I'll introduce them as and when required. Few of them will be timed charts. Initially I would like to make a simple case for identifying a particular chart that would seem to currently be functioning as a horoscope for Iraq as a socio-political entity. It's nothing too controversial - the for the Republic of Iraq as stated in Campion's Book of World Horoscopes. The data is July 14th 1958, 7:00am, Baghdad. This is the time and date for a coup which overthrew the monarchy. At 7:00am local time a voice came over the radio saying (in French) "This is the Republic of Iraq".

He lists two other charts alongside this one; one for the Kingdom of Iraq (August 23rd 1921, 6:00am Baghdad) established after WWI and the Treaty of San Remo which created the Middle East Mandates (April 25th 1920, San Remo, Italy). The other is for the independence of Iraq which happened with the ending of the British Mandate in 1932. Campion uses the time for the vote on admission to the League of Nations at 11:30am on October 3rd 1932. The vote was in Geneva, and Campion relocates it to Baghdad.

The natural logic of astrology would draw one towards the horoscope for the Republic as possibly the most significant one for the current situation, simply because of the radical symmetry break which moving from a monarchy to a republic entails. It changes the society in every way and on every level.

"The revolution radically altered Iraq's social structure, destroying the power of the landed shaykhs and the absentee landlords while enhancing the position of the urban workers, the peasants, and the middle class. In altering the old power structure, however, the revolution revived long-suppressed sectarian, tribal, and ethnic conflicts. The strongest of these conflicts were those between Kurds and Arabs and between Sunnis and Shias."
from: Library of Congress Federal Research Division, 1988.

Transits for the Baa'thist coup, July 17th 1968
The radical pan-Arab nationalist, or Baa'thist party which Saddam Hussein leads consolidated its political power in the wake of a military coup on July 17th 1968 and have been in control ever since. (see Iraq - A Country Study, online edition, chapter 1 section: Coups, Coup Attempts, and Foreign Policy). I have no time for this event.

As a set of transits, the for this coup would tend to support the vitality of the Republic of Iraq chart (ROI). For example:

Transits for the Iraq invasion of Iran
When Iraq invaded Iran on September 23rd 1980 some of the to the ROI chart are as follows:

Transits for Iraq invasion of Kuwait
When Iraq invaded Kuwait, the following to ROI were among those in operation:

Transits for Operation Desert Storm
The first Gulf war, or Operation Desert Storm, began at 2:30am on January 17th 1991 2:30am, under the following to the ROI chart:

Imminent transits to the Republic of Iraq Horoscopes
Given that Iraq is facing a monumental crisis beyond the one they are already in, one might expect to see some important transits moving down the line. And that these may have some relevance as regards timing of significant future events, among all the other indicators one might wish to dredge up.

With this in mind, one's attention is drawn to the following transits in the ROI chart over the next few months, and especially early next year:

The transit of Pluto to Saturn is especially interesting, aside from its obvious symbolic relevance for total transformation of State structures and general themes of annihilation. This is because it will also square the Pluto position (20Vi44') at the time of the coup which brought the Baa'thist party to power (see above) - a classic example of what I call structural coupling within sets of related mundane charts. Thus the Baa'th party is also up for transformation. Whether this comes as a consequence of US military activity, or internal coups / uprisings remains to be seen.

All this leads me to believe that the horoscope for the Republic of Iraq is a key map for astrological study during the next few months. Which perhaps tends to support the obvious, but it's good to see a degree of anecdotal confirmation nevertheless.

[Addendum: The second Gulf war - really an extension of the first - began at 5:30am with the bombing of Baghdad on March 20th 2003 in an operation called 'Shock and Awe'. is a horoscope of the transits in play for the Republic of Iraq horoscope at the time. The speculations in the text you are reading were not wrong.]

Republic of Iraq chart as a radix
Does this radix reflect the socio-political State it represents, or rather my perception of it? It's not too bad. The Moon in Gemini in the 11th is consistent with a nation that has a distinct and two-fold dual nature. While the society is surely more diverse in an absolute sense, the problematical ethnic division between Arabs and Kurds is an endless source of tension, as is the divide between the majority Shia Muslim population and the minority ruling Sunni Muslims. That such divisions are a challenging structural component within the society is indicated by the exact opposition from Saturn to the Moon-Venus conjunction. This carries a sense of separation as well as the difficulty in ensuring the welfare of all. The autonomous region of Iraqi-Kurdistan within the national boundaries encapsulates the divided status suggested by the Saturn contact.

Cancer Sun is consistent with the pan Arab nationalist ideology at the heart of the State, amplified by the squares from Jupiter and Mars. The crusade for a united Arab republic which featured heavily on the Iraqi agenda in the earlier decades of its existence (initially a proposed combination of Iraq, Egypt and Syria) has faded to the background at this stage. However, the Baa'thist party which was involved in the 1958 coup, and which currently rules Iraq, was started in 1949 by a couple of Arab students in Syria and is itself pan-Arab both by definition and its international distribution among Arab countries.

The Aries Mars and its tense relationship to Sun and Jupiter is consistent with the extent to which conflict has featured in the Iraqi experience, both internally and externally.

At the root of the chart on the IC is Neptune, which is most often associated with oil and gas. Iraq contains an estimated 10% of the world's oil reserves. Oil provides the foundation on which the society is built (IC) - black gold from the underworld (Scorpio IC).Leo is rising. This is consistent with the perceptions of Iraq's status within the region. It is the leading Arab power, or was until the Gulf War. A proud society whose independent nature and instinct to resist powerful demands for change (whether one currently agrees with this attitude or not - it's there nonetheless) is reflected in Uranus rising in Leo.

This is also consistent with Iraq's characterisitic pursuit of modernity. It is, or rather was, a technically advanced nation that places great emphasis on scientific research, and also education (Mercury exactly on the Ascendant?). The Baa'thist political ideology is socialist (Cancer Sun, perhaps helped along by Neptune on the IC) with a penchant for dictatorship (Leo rising) rather than monarchy. It's provisional 1970 Constitution (I wonder if that will ever be implemented!) extolls the virtues of freedom, equality and social democracy. Of course under the circumstances, this is clearly highly aspirational or maybe even a fantasy, but again, it is there waiting to be ratified nevertheless. This is not inconsistent with a strongly placed Uranus.

Uranus is also conjunct the SU/PL midpoint (orb 18'), while Mars sits on the SA/PL midpoint (orb 7'). This is a pretty fanatical, ruthless and brutal pair of midpoint pictures which has manifested repeatedly since 1958, not least since Saddam Hussein took power in 1979. If one can believe the circulating birth data for Saddam Hussein - April 28th 1937 - then his Pluto-Jupiter opposition aligns loosely with the ROI MA=SA/PL pattern. His natal Sun-Uranus conjunction straddles the ROI IC. Hussein's Uranus is loosely square the ROI UR=SU/PL pattern. He was clearly never going to be a benign dictator. His unpredictability, and in fact the perception of Iraq's unpredictability, is woven into these Uranus pictures.

So, there's just a few anecdotal astrological comments completely devoid of any scientific merit which I hope stimulate some astro-thinking on the madness which is quite likely to unfold in the next few months.

Copyright 2002-2007 Bill Sheeran. All rights reserved.