So, when I first arrived at the end of September I was able to purchase tonic water, but we are now going on our seventh week without tonic water, none of the stores have it and haven’t had it until the end of September.
Two other things that we currently can’t get are salted butter and cheese. I think that is because they are imported from Turkey and Iraq is currently having border squirmishes in the North with Turkey. On October 9, right around when the cheese started disappearing Turkey’s top political and military leaders issued a statement authorizing troops to cross the Iraq border to eliminate separatist Kurdish rebel camps in the northern region.
The best cheese you can get here is called Tek Sut, it is mozerellaish. Not very good, but the best you can get here and o.k. for cooking. The Kurds probably don’t care about whether or not they can buy Turkish cheese, maybe if Turkey made better cheese the rebels wouldn’t be so ready to attack across the border.
To read more about Iraq/Turkey relations check out this article.