Remember how last month WikiLeaks claimed that they had hit the mother load of hacked emails from "a top aid to president Hugo Chavez" and if you paid them cash money they'd let you look at them? And how the whole thing pretty well destroyed whatever credibility WikiLeaks once had in "transparency" circles because of the publicity stunt/extortion angle? Well, that was only the beginning of their problems.
It turns out that the target of the Email hack isn't a "top aid" after all, but rather Freddy Balzan, a former Venezuelan Ambassador to Argentina. And of the thousands of Emails they "acquired," not one is coming from, or going to, or even cc'ing, the big guy. Lucky you for not bidding.
Even more ridiculously, Thursday night WikiLeaks sent out a "courtesy" Email to all the people named in the Emails, warning them that their private information will "soon" be public, that the Emails are "passing around the "'anti-chavez' movements" and that the recipients should "take whatever precautions you need" to protect themselves because, well, those people be crazy.
Of course, just about everybody on the "courtesy" list is a Spanish speaker, and nobody at WikiLeaks speaks Spanish, so they ran their stupid courtesy message through an online translation service, with predictable results. The opening line, in Spanish, translates to:
Clear enough for you? Perhaps it is some sort of Venezuelan prince who will gift you with 30 million dollars! The warning part reads:
"At some time between 2005 and July 2008, which corresponded with Mr. Freddy Balzan, a former (2005), ambassador from Venezuela to Argentina."
"I think it shows the correspondence Balzan of the intelligence and strength of character. However, due to private data they are included, and political enemies who don't already have the material perhaps abuse of her, I ask you to review the correspondence."Protect yourself! Of course the whole point here is that WikiLeaks are a bunch of hilarious morons. Here's the link to the Balzan Emails. You can read the full text of their courtesy note, after the jump!
-----Original Message----- From: Julian Assange. [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: Thursday, September 25, 2008 9:31 PM
Subject: Correspondence Freddy Balzan
Spanish and English:
Sometime between 2005 and July 2008, you corresponded with Mr. Freddy Balzan, a well regarded former (2005) Venezuelan ambassador to Argentina.
The transparecy publisher, Sunshine Press, obtained a copy of this email along with many others. The information is passing around the "anti-chavez" movements.
I am notifying you, as a matter of curtesy, and in view of my admiration of Mr. Balzan, that part or all of the correspondence will shortly be made public at:
I feel that the correspondence demonstrates Mr. Balzan's intelligence and strength of character. However, because private details are included, and political enemies who do not already have the material may perhaps abuse it, I ask that you review the material and take whatever precautions you need.
If I can be of further assistance, let me know, Julian Assange
En algún momento entre 2005 y julio de 2008, que correspondía con el Sr Freddy Balzan, un antiguo (2005), embajador de Venezuela a la Argentina.
El editor transparecy, Sunshine de prensa, obtuvo una copia de este mensaje de correo electrónico junto con muchos otros. La información está pasando en torno a la "anti-Chávez" movimientos.
Estoy notificar a usted, como un asunto de curtesy, y en vista de mi admiración de Balzan, que una parte o la totalidad de la correspondencia en breve se hará público en:
Creo que demuestra la correspondencia Balzan de la inteligencia y la fuerza de carácter. Sin embargo, debido a datos privados están incluidos, y políticos enemigos que no tienen ya el material tal vez abusar de ella, le pido que revisar la correspondencia.