July 26, 2009 § Leave a comment
Above are two halves of a 2007 double-truck graphic in the Washington Post that tracks Iraq’s progress during the U.S. troop surge. You can see the full graphic as a PDF here: http://www.sethhamblin.com/hosted/surge_090907.pdf
Imagine a top editor comes to you and says, “I want a graphic that stretches across two pages. It needs to tell me everything I could possibly know about how Iraq has changed singe the surge began. I need it done by Friday.”
When that happened to me, I turned to the Brookings Institution’s Iraq Index for a lot of the heavy lifting. Brookings has tracked and compiled an impressively broad range of metrics since U.S. troops set foot in Iraq. It updates the index each Thursday.
The data can be used to plot charts on oil revenue, electricity production, Internet usage, casualties, attacks on oil and gas pipelines, U.S. troop levels, the size of the Iraqi security forces, public-opinion polling and dozens of other topics.
Brookings previously maintained a Katrina Index and has begun an Afghanistan Index.