CSMS Magazine Staff WritersDressed as police commandos, gunmen moved into the Higher Education Ministry in broad daylight and kidnapped up to 150 staff and visitors. The move is considered to be the largest mass abduction since the start of the U.S. occupation. In addition to that, 82 people were killed or found dead around the country.All but three of the kidnap victims were still missing, according to the Interior Ministry. The Ministry also confirmed that three of the kidnap victims were apparently set free and found unharmed along eastern Baghdad’s Palestine Street.Iraq’s higher education minister immediately ordered all universities closed until security improvements are made. “I have only one choice which is to suspend classes at universities. We have no other choice,” Abed Theyab said in an address to parliament. Theyab said he had repeatedly petitioned for more university security from the ministries of defense and interior, who command the police, but had received none.This is a major blow to the US government that repeatedly claims that the coalition forces have the upper hand. This is a sign that indicates the United States is no closer to securing Iraq than it was at the beginning of the invasion. Today is also considered one of the worst days of violence with21 people killed and 25 injured in a car bombing targeting traffic along a highway toward the Shiite slum of Sadr City, police Lt. Ali Muhssin Said.News of Tuesday morning’s kidnapping sparked outrage after it was announced in parliament. A spokesman for the Interior Ministry, which commands the police, said the chief of police in the downtown Karradah neighborhood where the kidnappings occurred had been placed under investigation along with some of his officers.Could that be enough to appease the population? Seeking scapegoats will not work. The US must acknowledge the strength of the resistance and also admit that there is no military solution to the Iraqi problem. It is impossible to pacify an occupied nation that vehemently refuses to be oppressed. Eyewitnesses said the gunmen, who numbered about 80, had closed off streets surrounding the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research, Scholarships and Cultural Relations Directorate. The institute is responsible for granting scholarships to Iraqi professors and students wishing to study abroad.Also see Iraq: http://www.csmsmagazine.org/news.php?pg=20061108I329
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