Re: civilian tourists
Yes, the Al Rasheid in Baghdad will accomodate paying civilians...I should hope so since no one else is allowed to stay there. (except for the occasional UN military person). Sometimes, its only available to people participating in political affairs who are visiting from afar.
However, it's expensive...around 300 USD a night last I heard. And not the safest place to be. It's next to the Convention center which is the target of so many rocket and mortar attacks...90% of which never get reported on the news since it's within the International Zone - what the media insists on calling the Green Zone. I would recommend the Palestine hotel across the river.
Just before I left in June, we had a few rockets land in the parking lot of the Al Rasheid and shred a few locals. The Iraqi government refused to clean up the body parts and gore so they tried getting us to do it by lying and saying that it was our employees.
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