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August 23, 2007
Iraqi Science Ministry Official Kidnapped
UPI is reporting that unknown gunmen kidnapped Samir Salim al-Attar, the acting undersecretary of the Ministry of Science and Technology Monday. There is currently no confirmation of the report on the Multi-national Forces - Iraq website, but the original report from the Kuwait News Agency (KUNA) can be found here. The sources for the Kuwaiti article said that the gunmen abducted Al-Attar while he was returning to his house in Baghdad.
The Minister of Science and Technology, Raed Fahmi, confirmed the kidnapping during a phone interview with KUNA. With the earlier kidnapping of Oil Undersecretary Abduljabbar Al-Wakka', and attacks and sabotage against the electrical grid, the economic aspect of the enemy's strategy remains key to defeating the Coalition.
The Iraqi Ministry of Science and Technology was established in 2003 based on the same concept as the Science and Technology Commission set up in post-WW II Japan. Both were designed to pool their respective countries' scientific and engineering expertise to get the war-torn nations back on their feet. What before had been departments that focused on research and development for weapons, would be re-oriented and established as functional business enterprises to provide the theoretical science and practical engineering for fixing the industrial and agricultural infrastructure among other critical activities.
The Coalition and the new Iraqi Army cannot possibly protect the myriad industrial activities of Iraq and key engineering personnel 24/7. The only way to secure Iraq is to continue offensive operations until the enemy is defeated and his will is broken. Only then will the country be a functioning, free-market democracy.