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Inside the Middle East
July 14, 2009
Posted: 849 GMT
AHMAD AL-RUBAYE/AFP/Getty Images. The Iraqi team is welcomed by fans onto the pitch at the start of the friendly match Iraq versus Palestine at the al-Shaab Stadium in central Baghdad on July 13, 2009. Iraq won 4-0. Over 50,000 fans attended the first international football match played in the Iraqi capital since the US-led invasion of the country in 2003.
AHMAD AL-RUBAYE/AFP/Getty Images. The Iraqi team is welcomed by fans onto the pitch at the start of the friendly match Iraq versus Palestine at the al-Shaab Stadium in central Baghdad on July 13, 2009. Iraq won 4-0. Over 50,000 fans attended the first international football match played in the Iraqi capital since the US-led invasion of the country in 2003.
AHMAD AL-RUBAYE/AFP/Getty Images. Members of the Iraqi team line up at the start of their friendly match Iraq versus Palestine at the al-Shaab Stadium in central Baghdad on July 13, 2009. Iraq won 4-0.
AHMAD AL-RUBAYE/AFP/Getty Images. Members of the Iraqi team line up at the start of their friendly match Iraq versus Palestine at the al-Shaab Stadium in central Baghdad on July 13, 2009. Iraq won 4-0.
AHMAD AL-RUBAYE/AFP/Getty Images. Members of the Palestinian team stand on the pitch at the start of the friendly match Iraq versus Palestine at the al-Shaab Stadium in central Baghdad on July 13, 2009. Iraq won 4-0.
AHMAD AL-RUBAYE/AFP/Getty Images. Members of the Palestinian team stand on the pitch at the start of the friendly match Iraq versus Palestine at the al-Shaab Stadium in central Baghdad on July 13, 2009. Iraq won 4-0.
AHMAD AL-RUBAYE/AFP/Getty Images. An Iraqi fan celebrates during the friendly match Iraq versus Palestine at the al-Shaab Stadium in central Baghdad on July 13, 2009. Iraq won 4-0.
AHMAD AL-RUBAYE/AFP/Getty Images. An Iraqi fan celebrates during the friendly match Iraq versus Palestine at the al-Shaab Stadium in central Baghdad on July 13, 2009. Iraq won 4-0.

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Filed under: Iraq •Palestinians •Sports


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G.   July 17th, 2009 4:20 pm ET

I like athletes, jocks. They care about their fans and their games and keep it simple. Politics can get complicated and even mean and cruel. It's good to see people just having fun and relaxing and perhaps people need that time. Perhaps a baby step forward in developing friendships. There are always bad guys, on either side of anything, but hopefully the nice, fun guys will win.

G.   July 27th, 2009 3:44 pm ET

I still think that the world needs more fun and bonding. I like these stories.


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Welcome to the Inside the Middle East blog where CNN's journalists post news, views and video from across the region. This is also a place where you can start the discussion so please keep your comments coming. We highlight not only current news stories but also anecdotes and issues that don't always make the top of the headlines.

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