Capturing the world through photography, video and multimedia

In 2004, Women and children flee their neighborhood after the explosion of multiple car bombs targeting Christian churches and their communities. Dozens were killed in the synchronized attack.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times

In 2011, the neighborhood of Karada, scene of the bomb attack on a Christian church in August 2004. Over half of all Christians who lived in Iraq before 2003 have now left the country.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times

In April 2003, the body of an Iraqi lies in a street in downtown Baghdad in an area that the Americans had not yet occupied.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times

In 2011, downtown is filled with life and commerce nine years after U.S. forces invaded.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times

In 2003, a sandstorm creates a yellow haze as a man walks past one of the many statues of President Saddam Hussein.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times

In Firdos Square in 2011, the pedestal remains but the statue of Saddam Hussein is long gone. Nearly nine years after the U.S. invasion of Iraq, Iragis have mixed emotions about the departure of American forces.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times

In 2003, a bullet-hole-riddled image of Saddam Hussein is painted over by Salem Yuel at what was once a training camp. Symbols of Hussein's rule quickly disappeared throughout the city after the U.S. invasion of Iraq.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times

In 2011, a giant portrait of Muqtada Sadr, an Iraqi Islamic political leader, towers over cars passing the entrance to Sadr City. Saddam Hussein's statues and billboards used to be present throughout the country, but they were eliminated in 2003.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times

In 2003, before the U.S. invasion of Iraq in March 2003, the Khadim family was stocking up on sleeping pills to give their four small children. They didn't believe that American troops would make it to Baghdad. Father Jalal Khadim and mother Suhad Khadim and their children had to leave their home because the neighborhood was too dangerous after the U.S. invasion.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times

The Khadim family in 2011. The family has suffered since the invasion and now lives in a vacant office building. They had to flee to Syria to escape the violence. Mother Suhad Khadim, now 38, says life was better under Saddam Hussein. She worries about the future of her children, from left, including Abdullah, 10; Dina, 14; Ali, 11; and Mina, 15. Her husband, Jalal Khadim, 42, has not been able to reopen the shop he once had in the same building.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times

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Iraq war: Scenes in Baghdad, then and now

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Iraq war: Scenes in Baghdad, then and now

Los Angeles Times photographer Carolyn Cole covered the war in Iraq from Baghdad before, during and after the first bombs were dropped. Recently, Cole returned to Iraq to cover the U.S. military withdrawal and revisited the scenes of several of her earlier photographs to document the changes. Here are some of the images.

1 Comment

  1. March 23, 2013, 12:33 pm

    Actions that, on erroneous assumptions, authorized the invasion ten years ago that resulted in such horrendous costs to the U.S. and to Iraq in lives, injuries, suffering, physical devastation and money, far into the future, should be investigated at least for possible negligence on the part of our elected representatives who may have failed to exercise due care on our behalf. To do less is to abdicate our duty as citizens and to invite repetition of such disasters.

    By: Ricardo Nicol

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