Gemini version available ♊︎

Cablegate: Iraq Rebuilt With Free/Open Source Software

Posted in Cablegate, Free/Libre Software at 7:57 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz


Summary: Folks from MIT (home of the FSF/GNU) were said to be using “open-source software” for an “Intranet [that] would rely on radio and satellite data links to avoid dependence on Iraq’s telecom system” and more

“Gatti said MIT plans to set up the system using open-source software,” claims the following Cablegate cable, which speaks about setting up some communication infrastructure for post-invasion Iraq. Here is the full cable:

C O N F I D E N T I A L  ROME 002050 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 05/22/2014 
TAGS: EAID [Foreign Economic Assistance], EINT [Economic and Commercial Internet], PREL [External Political Relations], IT [Italy], IZ [Iraq], IRAQI FREEDOM 
Classified By: Economic Minister-Counselor Scott Kilner 
for reasons 1.4 (b)(d) 
¶1. (C) Italy's Ministry of Innovation and Technology (MIT) is 
ready to send a team to Baghdad to start work on a Euro 11 
million project to build an Intranet system for the Iraqi 
government.  According to an aide to MIT Minister Lucio 
Stanca, however, the Italian Foreign Ministry will not 
approve the trip because of security concerns.  The completed 
system would link 20-30 Iraqi government departments to each 
other and the Internet using a mix of radio and satellite 
links.  End summary. 
Safety Concerns Delay E-Government Project. 
¶2. (C) Stefano Gatti (protect), Diplomatic Advisor to 
Innovation and Technology Minister Lucio Stanca, recently 
gave Econoff an update of Italy's Euro 10-11 million project 
to provide the Iraqi government with a basic Intranet 
infrastructure.  The MIT has a team ready to go to Baghdad to 
conduct an initial survey of the Iraqi Ministries' 
requirements; but, Gatti explained with some exasperation, 
the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) is delaying approval of 
the trip.  Gatti speculated that the MFA was nervous about 
sending additional Italian officials to Baghdad given the 
unresolved status of three Italian hostages, the death this 
month of an Italian soldier in Nasiriyah, and the 
assassination of Interim Governing Council President Ezzedine 
Salim outside the Green Zone.  In this environment, Gatti 
said, the GOI is reluctant to send more people to Baghdad. 
Gatti said the MIT has pared down the team from eight to four 
people in deference to the MFA's security concerns, but the 
MFA is still withholding approval. 
Need for Iraqi Coordinator 
¶3. (SBU) A second problem the project has encountered, Gatti 
remarked, is finding an Iraqi agency to coordinate with the 
MIT team.  He explained that, since the project involves 
hooking up several Iraqi ministries to a central Intranet 
hub, Italy must find an Iraqi authority capable of overseeing 
such a government-wide project.  Gatti predicted, however, 
that this problem would be overcome once the Ministry has its 
own people on the ground in Baghdad. 
¶4. (SBU) MIT's proposed Euro 10-11 million Iraqi Government 
Intranet project is designed to give the Iraqi government a 
basic system for electronically linking ministries and, 
possibly, municipal and provincial governments.  The initial 
budget covers the cost of a central server bank, connections 
for 20-30 government departments (each with 20 work 
stations), a remote back-up system (possibly located in 
Italy), plus training and technical support.  The Iraqi 
Intranet would rely on radio and satellite data links to 
avoid dependence on Iraq's telecom system.  In addition to 
providing Iraqi officials with basic email and Internet 
connectivity, the Intranet network could also be used for 
telephone service among government departments.  Gatti said 
MIT plans to set up the system using open-source software. 
(Note: A copy of Italy's proposal for the Iraqi Government 
Intranet is available on Rome's Classnet homepage under the 
section "Italy Background Notes."  Please do not distribute 
this document outside the USG.  End note.) 
Start-up Funding Available from MFA and World Bank 
--------------------------------------------- ----- 
¶5. (SBU) Gatti said the MFA already has Euro two million 
available to start the project.  The MIT expects to receive 
another Euro two million from the World Bank's Development 
Gateway Foundation, he said.  The MIT, Gatti asserted, is 
ready to start the project even though it has yet to secure 
the full Euro 10-11 million in funding.  Gatti predicted the 
additional money would fall into place once the project got 
underway.  (Note: The GOI is counting this project as part of 
its Euro 200 million Madrid pledge. End note.) 
¶6. (C) The delay in sending the MIT team to Baghdad 
demonstrates how the continuing Italian hostage ordeal and 
recent violence around Nasiriyah is creating government 
nervousness with negative consequences for reconstruction 
work.  However, assuming the security situation stabilizes 
and there are no more high-profile attacks or kidnappings 
that target Italians, we expect that the MIT team will be 
cleared to go to Baghdad in coming weeks. 
Visit Rome's Classified Website: 
http://www.state.sgov.gov/p/eur/rome/index.cf m 
        2004ROME02050 - Classification: CONFIDENTIAL

It is possible that a lot of systems were built with proprietary systems (contractors helping other contractors), but the above is noteworthy nonetheless.

Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email

Decor ᶃ Gemini Space

Below is a Web proxy. We recommend getting a Gemini client/browser.

Black/white/grey bullet button This post is also available in Gemini over at this address (requires a Gemini client/browser to open).

Decor ✐ Cross-references

Black/white/grey bullet button Pages that cross-reference this one, if any exist, are listed below or will be listed below over time.

Decor ▢ Respond and Discuss

Black/white/grey bullet button If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

DecorWhat Else is New

  1. Links 01/06/2023: Spleen 2.0.0 Released and Team UPC Celebrates Its Own Corruption

    Links for the day

  2. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, May 31, 2023

    IRC logs for Wednesday, May 31, 2023

  3. Tux Machines Closing the Door on Twitter Because Twitter is Dead (for a Lot of People)

    Tux Machines recently joined millions of others who had already quit Twitter, including passive posting (fully or partly automated)

  4. Links 31/05/2023: Inkscape’s 1.3 Plans and New ARM Cortex-A55-Based Linux Chip

    Links for the day

  5. Gemini Links 31/05/2023: Personality of Software Engineers

    Links for the day

  6. Links 31/05/2023: Armbian 23.05 Release and Illegal UPC

    Links for the day

  7. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, May 30, 2023

    IRC logs for Tuesday, May 30, 2023

  8. Gemini Protocol About to Turn 4 and It's Still Growing

    In the month of May we had zero downtime (no updates to the system or outages in the network), which means Lupa did not detect any errors such as timeouts and we’re on top of the list (the page was fixed a day or so after we wrote about it); Gemini continues to grow (chart by Botond) as we’re approaching the 4th anniversary of the protocol

  9. Links 31/05/2023: Librem Server v2, curl 8.1.2, and Kali Linux 2023.2 Release

    Links for the day

  10. Gemini Links 31/05/2023: Bayes Filter and Programming Wordle

    Links for the day

  11. [Meme] Makes No Sense for EPO (Now Connected to the EU) and Staff Pensions to be Tied to the UK After Brexit

    It seems like EPO staff is starting to have doubts about the safety of EPO pensions after Benoît Battistelli sent money to reckless gambling (EPOTIF) — a plot that’s 100% supported by António Campinos and his enablers in the Council, not to mention the European Union

  12. Working Conditions at EPO Deteriorate and Staff Inquires About Pension Rights

    Work is becoming a lot worse (not even compliant with the law!) and promises are constantly being broken, so staff is starting to chase management for answers and assurances pertaining to finances

  13. Links 30/05/2023: Orc 0.4.34 and Another Rust Crisis

    Links for the day

  14. Links 30/05/2023: Nitrux 2.8.1 and HypoPG 1.4.0

    Links for the day

  15. Gemini Links 30/05/2023: Bubble Version 3.0

    Links for the day

  16. Links 30/05/2023: LibreOffice 7.6 in Review and More Digital Restrictions (DRM) From HP

    Links for the day

  17. Gemini Links 30/05/2023: Curl Still Missing the Point?

    Links for the day

  18. IRC Proceedings: Monday, May 29, 2023

    IRC logs for Monday, May 29, 2023

  19. MS (Mark Shuttleworth) as a Microsoft Salesperson

    Canonical isn’t working for GNU/Linux or for Ubuntu; it’s working for “business partners” (WSL was all along about promoting Windows)

  20. First Speaker in Event for GNU at 40 Called for Resignation/Removal of GNU's Founder

    It’s good that the FSF prepares an event to celebrate GNU’s 40th anniversary, but readers told us that the speakers list is unsavoury, especially the first one (a key participant in the relentless campaign of defamation against the person who started both GNU and the FSF; the "FSFE" isn't even permitted to use that name)

  21. When Jokes Became 'Rude' (or Disingenuously Misinterpreted by the 'Cancel Mob')

    A new and more detailed explanation of what the wordplay around "pleasure card" actually meant

  22. Site Updates and Plans Ahead

    A quick look at or a roundup of what we've been up to, what we plan to publish in the future, what topics we shall focus on very soon, and progress moving to Alpine Linux

  23. Links 29/05/2023: Snap and PipeWire Plans as Vendor Lock-in

    Links for the day

  24. Gemini Links 29/05/2023: GNU/Linux Pains and More

    Links for the day

  25. Links 29/05/2023: Election in Fedora, Unifont 15.0.04

    Links for the day

  26. Gemini Links 29/05/2023: Rosy Crow 1.1.1 and Smolver 1.2.1 Released

    Links for the day

  27. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, May 28, 2023

    IRC logs for Sunday, May 28, 2023

  28. Daniel Stenberg Knows Almost Nothing About Gemini and He's Likely Just Protecting His Turf (HTTP/S)

    The man behind Curl, Daniel Stenberg, criticises Gemini; but it's not clear if he even bothered trying it (except very briefly) or just read some inaccurate, one-sided blurbs about it

  29. Links 29/05/2023: Videos Catchup and Gemini FUD

    Links for the day

  30. Links 28/05/2023: Linux 6.4 RC4 and MX Linux 23 Beta

    Links for the day

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

Recent Posts