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The gift that keeps on giving: Colombia's magic laptops and the war against social movements

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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 05:53 AM
Original message
The gift that keeps on giving: Colombia's magic laptops and the war against social movements
The gift that keeps on giving
Colombia's magic laptops and the war against social movements

March 07, 2009
By Justin Podur

One of Colombia's major magazines, Cambio, published a story quoting from the magic laptops that survived bombing in the Ecuadorian jungle and were retrieved after the Colombian government assassinated Raul Reyes just about a year ago (March 3/08). This particular story concerns my friends Hollman Morris and Manuel Rozental.

Since last year, supposed documents from these magic laptops have appeared at politically convenient times for the regime to provide public accusations against social movement activists.

More:
http://www.zcommunications.org/znet/viewArticle/20810
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Peace Patriot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 11:51 AM
Response to Original message
1. Ah, me, as we expected. That "Office of Special Plans" that we thought had been
disbanded, lives on.
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Peace Patriot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 12:19 PM
Response to Original message
2. Judi, do you have that announcement that there were NO emails in the FARC laptops?
I remember reading it here, in the Latin American Forum, I think. I'll go check there. But if you have it, please post it.

These emails are fabrications, and they have been used to defame Venezuela's president and Ecuador's president, for their efforts to achieve peace in Colombia's 40+ civil war--a war that harries their borders, and sends tens of thousands of Colombian refugees into their countries, that they must care for, and which spills over the borders in other ways, including assassination plots against the leaders of these and other countries--as well as to harass (and I think even arrest, and raid offices) of leftists in other countries. (El Salvador? Peru? I'm a little fuzzy on details this morning--I remember, in reading about this, that they were places where the struggle is still going on, to oust rightwing governments and elect leaders who truly represent the majority.)

Colombia's security forces (closely tied to rightwing death squads and major cocaine trafficking), in collusion with Exxon Mobil's and Occidental Petroleum's "Office of Special Plans," can just fabricate anything they like, and claim that they found it in FARC's computer, and then they shovel it--unvetted by anyone--to their rightwing pals in the police and security/military forces around Latin America.

We must realize that these people are intent on war--and defaming those who want peace and social justice is a preliminary to war. This is not just political--bad as that would be. It is war strategy and psyops. They've been doing it to Chavez from the beginning--a relentless campaign of lies--and, now that they are practiced at it (with Bushwhack tutelage), and have found out who will promulgate the shit they shovel, they have expanded it to other leftist leaders--presidents, grass roots organizers, human rights workers. As the writer of this article says, in some places, like Colombia, this is a death warrant. How many more deaths are we going to fund there, with $6 BILLION in military aid?
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 01:21 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. Got it: " Police investigator: there were no e-mails on computer Ral Reyes"
Police investigator: there were no e-mails on computer Ral Reyes
Tuesday, 02 December 2008 08:32



An anti-terrorism investigator of the Colombian police said no e-mails were found on the computer of slain FARC commander Ral Reyes. Investigators only found Word documents, Noticias Uno reported Tuesday.

Captain Ronald Hayden Coy Cortiz declared before the prosecution that e-mail addresses were found in the Word documents, but that there were no e-mails on the computers.

"We haven't seen any e-mails, I haven't found them so far. They found a large number of e-mail addresses, but Reyes kept these in a Word document and other Microsoft documents," the investigator said in his testimony.

Coy Cortiz made the statements in the investigation of an Ecuadorean politician with alleged ties to the guerrillas. Several journalists and politicians are accused of having ties to the guerrillas.

Defense Minister Juan Manuel Santos insists e-mails were found on the computers. "Many people are worried about the e-mails and are trying to strip them of their judicial value and defend themselves like that, but the e-mails are proof now, also in Spain," Santos said.

Reyes was killed in an attack on his Ecuadorean camp on March 1, 2008. His alleged computers have been subject to controversy since. The Colombian government claims the content incriminates the governments of Venezuela and Ecuador and a number of politicians and journalists.

http://colombiareports.com/colombian-news/news/2215-pol...

Damned interesting. Apparently when the corporate media meet information they doesn't like they ignore it, and proceed with the fiction. They are forgetting they actually assume those jobs acting as honest servants working for the public interest, rather than duplicitous propagandists.
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Peace Patriot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 02:42 PM
Response to Reply #3
5. Thank you, Judi! I'm going to bookmark it right now. These preliminaries to war
piss me off so much! Like the WMDs that weren't found in Iraq. Lies that get people killed, tortured, displaced, and cause catalclysms. You can almost understand the brutality of battle better than this--from the soldier's point of view anyway. Survival and fear rule--and fatigue, and deprivation, and seeing too many horrors, and the whole bloody terrible thing. But this sneaky, conniving, lying shit in peacetime--by people with no courage at all, who have no excuses, and whose sole, deliberate, thought out purpose is to fuck with peoples minds, makes me want to... :puke:

Maybe it's because we have nothing else as a pillar holding up democracy but the truth. That's what holds us together. That's what makes democracy work. And people who deliberately mess with that are despicable. They are the lowest form of cowardly worms. And I hesitate to associate them with worms, which are useful critters. They are less than worms. They are like a flesh-eating virus--destroying democracy, good government and all that good, decent people aspire to be.
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 02:53 PM
Response to Reply #5
6. A fervent, sustained "amen" to that, Peace Patriot. n/t
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 01:35 PM
Response to Reply #2
4. That article links to a news story from a tv station. Call for an HONEST Spanish speaker
who will take a look at it for the democratically formed people here who don't speak Spanish.

You may want to look at the brief news clip, anyway, to get a feeling for the value of the story, at least!

I really want you to see this SNAKE they apparently found in the area when they went there. Simply amazing seeing that's the kind of environment the rebels were living in! Whoa!

http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid3451456...

Hoping a Spanish speaker we trust, respect will see this news clip and give us the rundown. That includes most of the Spanish speakers who participate here.
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rabs Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 06:51 PM
Response to Reply #4
9. The translation in post #3 is on the mark for the TV report
The tone of the TV report is neutral. It reports without any opinion either way.

But missing is why Captain Ronald Hayden Coy Cortiz testified under oath in the first place. It was in connection to an investigation initiated by the Uribe government into alleged ties between the FARC and Ecuadoran Assembly member Maria Augusta Calle in May of last year after the bombing raid. The TV reporter said the captain's testimony could undermine the investigation.

On May 23 of last year, the Ecuadoran Assembly condemened Colombia's action against Calle as a "new act of agression."



Maria Agusta Calle, Ecuadoran Assembly member and well-known activist

----------------------

Judi, do you know the brand of those laptops? My computer goes back about three generations and when it finally dies, I would like one of those computers that can withstand the powerful blasts of ten, 500-pounds bombs like the ones dropped on the camp. Was also glad that Super-Boa survived too. :)

Oh, over on GD I translated what Chavez said on the "Wash your a$$" thread. You might take a look at it, it puts things in perspective.

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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 08:22 PM
Response to Reply #9
10. I had a feeling if you saw that, you'd clear it up. Thank god!
For any poster who wonders what rabs has mentioned, please take a look at a filthy attempt by someone who intellectually knows better to stab someone in the back through taking advantage of people who aren't familiar with language as it's spoken in Latin America.

Here is the actual, thoughtful, TRUTHFUL translation of a speech posted by someone attempting to pull off a filthy character assassination, lying to us all, in order to create an illusion which doesn't stand up to scrutiny:

http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...

Goes to prove to us ALL we have to keep looking until we get to a source we know to be above reproach.

rabs, you are so good to have taken the time to do this to illuminate what was REALLY SAID in that speech. I've known and watched your behavior, reputation across several formats, through many, many thousands of people, have known you since 2000, at least, and know your character has always been above reproach. That's why I was certain, if you saw that bit of treachery, you'd put things in perspective.

Not one of the people who spend their efforts trying to maliciously interject lies into our conversations has your credibility, nor has one particle of your life experience ALL throughout Latin America.

Regarding that very TAME whopper snake, you have to wonder if that was a prop they brought with them, in a box on that plane for special effects, don't you? Could it have been Santos' brother, or son?

Can't believe the Colombia idiots were attempting to drag down an Ecuadorian activist, as they do leftists in their OWN country!
I hope they were laughed out of town on that crude attempt. They are scum, aren't they? No doubt Maria Augusta Calle wouldn't hesitate to tell, by a direct look, any of them if they had approached her in a personal sense. She doesn't look like someone who has to put up with a lot of nonsense. She'd better hire extra security until these fools are gone. They are so treacherous.

In case you missed the image, here's Uribe, on his horsie, sipping his Colombian coffee honest people grew, while being hailed by George W. Bush's Commerce Secretary Carlos Guttierez, on the left, in the crowd.



Please allow me to mention how keenly I appreciate your extraodinary act in translating the speech for those of us who strongly believed someone was lying to us, hoping we'd all just take his "word" for it.

It simply didn't make sense that he'd actually have said that, particularly when you'd seen the comments he had also made publicly in the very same general time frame concerning President Obama, comments which were very similar to your translation in tone.

It really figures, doesn't it?
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Bacchus39 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 08:37 PM
Response to Reply #10
11. you wouldn't know if it was an accurate translation, I repeat
Chavez said:

Demonstrate some intelligence Mr. Obama.

I have doubts that Obama governs the US.

Don't follow the stupid road.

Go wash your asshole.

and then he asked to be treated with respect and dignity.


this is the person we are supposed to make nice with. I don't think so. and what is the strategic interest in Ven anyway. they sell oil, we buy. thats it.
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 10:07 PM
Response to Reply #11
19. Unbelievable you have tried to put this filthy lie over on people here.
Unbelievable you have tried to put this filthy lie over on people here.

He does NOT say "Go wash your asshole."

That may sound like something you imagine a leftist would say in a speech but the truth doesn't seem to lean in that direction, does it?

You've been claiming he says "culo" all over this place. He doesn't say "culo" anywhere in the speech. NOT ONCE.

What he DOES say is the following, carefully heard and translated by a man of character who saw your feeble attempt to fool non-Spanish-speaking DU'ers:
OP snippets can be misleading to those who do not understand the full context. (translation mine)

-----------------------------

"Then the government of Obama yesterday has said that Venezuela, and myself, (using my) first and last name, do not collaborate with the fight against the narco traffic, that Venezuela has become one of the countries that most aids the narco traffic.

"Well, one of the countries that most aids the narco traffic, or, better said, correcting, the country where narco trafficking is most aided on this planet is the country that (Obama) governs, or, I think he governs it, I have my doubts that Obama governs it, but it's the United States that most aids the narco traffic on this planet.

"The United States is the biggest consumer in the world of drugs. How is it that they cannot stop the entry of drugs into their own territory?

"What is this, such cynicism. Obama, take charge of your own (affairs) and I will take charge of mine here, compadre. Do not mess with me Mr. Obama.

(Chavez then quotes a verse from the famous Venezuelan author Romulo about a thorny plant that grows on the savannas, a plant that flowers, gives off a sweet scent, but digs its thorns on those who shake it. Chavez is comparing Venezuela to the plant, i.e., don't shake it.)

"Do not mess with Venezuela, Obama. Do not make an error, do not follow the same clumsy and stupid road of the previous government of the United States. Demonstrate a bit of intelligence, Obama, and (your) secretary of state. Do not continue on the road of stupidity. Show your face to the world, recognize, see that this world has begun to change, that Venezuela has changed forever.

"They are not going to reduce or intimidate or anything ... we have dealt the narco traffic blows that had never before been seen here, in different forms.

"The DEA, here (in Venezuela), aided the narco traffic, the DEA here aided 'el golpismo' (coups).

"The day before yesterday they published and read the report on human rights. They also ranted against Venezuela.

"How strange that Obama has not learned about the violation of human rights in his own country, the Patriot Law, what is it? Persecutions, the death penalty, executions, torture.

"Is Obama not aware of Guantanamo, is Obama not aware of the merciless bombings of innocent people in Iraq, where his country, his soldiers keep killing children, innocent families?

"Has Obama not been aware of Israel and its genocidal aggression against the Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip?

"Because in the (human rights) report they no not mention Israel. They do not mention the government of the United States, but Venezuela, yes. To them it remains the country that violates human rights.

"Go wash that palto++, Mr. Obama. Go wash that palto. Those of you who want can translate it into 'criollo' (Venezuelan colloquial).

"I have nothing else to say. Do not say later that it was I who first started throwing rocks, no, I am here and I will defend with my life the dignity of my country, the dignity of my people.

"That Venezuela be respected, Venezuela respects itself ...

"For a nation with respect, there will never again be an empire that will disrespect us.

-------------------------------------------

Venezuelan Colloquial Spanish

** Palto Chaqueta de vestir, parte de arriba de un traje, saco de vestir

Palto: dress jacket, top part of a suit, overcoat

Trying to find out from Venezuelan friend in Florida what the "criollo" meaning is. In Argentina and Chile, a palto is an avocado tree.
http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...
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Bacchus39 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 03:31 PM
Response to Original message
7. here is what was found on the laptops
Using sophisticated forensic tools, INTERPOL's experts determined that the eight seized computer exhibits contained more than 600 gigabytes of data, including 37,872 written documents, 452 spreadsheets, 210,888 images, 22,481 web pages, 7,989 email addresses, 10,537 multimedia files (sound and video), and 983 encrypted files.

In non-technical terms, this volume of data would correspond to 39.5 million filled pages in Microsoft Word and, if all of the seized data were in Word format, it would take more than 1,000 years to read at a rate of 100 pages per day. To break the 983 encrypted files, INTERPOL's experts linked and ran 10 computers simultaneously 24 hours a day / 7 days a week for two weeks.

http://www.interpol.int/public/icpo/pressreleases/pr200...


I'll say it again. I don't have emails "on my computer" either. I use web based services like most people. I can access my accounts from any computer connected to the net. if someone hacks my account they can see the emails I sent and received as well from any computer.

I don't know what you are holding on to with this. look above at what was found. this is a non-issue.
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Zorro Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 05:23 PM
Response to Reply #7
8. Well Bacchus, apparently some progress has been made
A year ago our resident pedant was hysterically declaring that the laptops could not have survived the attack. Apparently there's now an acceptance that they did survive, and that information has been retrieved from them.

Now there's a grasping at straws about whether there were "emails" or not; there must be the belief that Reyes had a good wifi connection while squatting in the jungle, so the lack of "emails" is quite suspicious.

Here's another thought: Reyes included the email addresses of intended recipients in the bodies of Word documents, so that whoever was entrusted to transmit them from an internet connection would know who they were intended for.
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Bacchus39 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 08:46 PM
Response to Reply #8
12. yeah, not sure what they are grasping at with the claim of no emails
Edited on Sat Mar-07-09 08:47 PM by Bacchus39
the list of materials discovered is right there for them to see. of course they will lie at the drop of the hat to "protect" Chavez.

what's funny is that there is that picture of Reyes in a cabaa working on the lap top



laptop??? there is no laptop!!!

picture of Raul Reyes sending an email from his laptop. He is dressed as a revolutionary wannabe wearing a cute little FARC insignia


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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 08:55 PM
Response to Reply #8
13. As usual, you are reduced to insults. Why do you bother, really?
If only out of self-respect, why bother?
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Bacchus39 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 08:57 PM
Response to Reply #13
14. what do you think of the insults that Chavez launched at Obama???
why are you even here? go to Venezuela to be with your hero.
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 09:20 PM
Response to Reply #13
15. Insults which have the sickening effect of LIES. Hard to know if this version came from ignorance,
or maybe illness, as in a malaria delerium, or from simple bone-deep dishonesty.
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Zorro Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 09:44 PM
Response to Reply #15
17. Too bad you can't come to terms with reality
There's a difference between truth and rhetoric.

Seems that you can't distinguish between the two.
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 10:29 PM
Response to Reply #17
20. Take time to have a grasp of what is actually being discussed.
Otherwise you sound disoriented.

The "insults" being trumpeted here in a manic fever are LIES. He did NOT say "asshole," and any fool can tell that who listens to the video, once he/she knows that "asshole" is "culo" as the poster has claimed repeatedly, when it's clear he says "Palto," and for the hard of hearing, it's written above the video.

If you really DO speak Spanish and you maintain this is what he said, then you are telling us you are ALSO somene who lies to get a political advantage.

You should have learned by now that lies are ordinarily exposed, in time.
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Zorro Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 11:17 PM
Response to Reply #20
21. You should listen to your own advice
My comments were in regard to your rants about the laptops.

You are the one that is disoriented, since you apparently want to shift the discussion away from that topic.

And my Spanish language skills are no doubt much better than yours. "Besame Culo" is a favorite song of mine.
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 11:31 PM
Response to Reply #21
22. Chavez didn't say "culo," did he? Someone lied here.
You should have realized long ago people don't care too much if you attempt to insult them. You have to have standing to have your comments mean anything.
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Bacchus39 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 11:49 PM
Response to Reply #22
23. ummm....that is one of the words for asshole. you don't speak Spanish
you have no idea. focus your time on learning a valuable skill.
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Zorro Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-08-09 12:08 AM
Response to Reply #22
24. Again you ignore your own advice
since you never hesitate to belittle informed posters who dare offer contrary insights that challenge your skewed interpretation of events.

You should know by now that you don't get a free pass to insult without consequence. And you have little to complain about when getting a taste of your own medicine.
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-08-09 05:13 AM
Response to Reply #24
26. You are coming to the rescue of your ally, speaking up for him, defending his slander.
That's bound to carry a lot of weight, isn't it?

Damned sad.
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Zorro Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-08-09 02:55 PM
Response to Reply #26
27. Nope, that's not what I'm doing
I'm drubbing your posterior in this thread.

That's what I'm doing.
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Zorro Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 09:41 PM
Response to Reply #13
16. Another content-free post from you
You seem to have an obsessive desire to silence my well-considered opinions in these threads.

You really are quite the slow learner.
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-07-09 09:53 PM
Response to Reply #16
18. I agree. You should not be victimized for posting insults to this forum
Edited on Sat Mar-07-09 09:55 PM by EFerrari
but get every measure of respect you deserve. And, I'm sure you do and will. Buenas. :)
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-08-09 04:55 AM
Response to Original message
25. To the DU posters who matter, who want more information on what the phrase means
in Venezuelan idiom, please see the post by rabs, who called his Venezuelan friend last night in Miami and checked with her for her exact understanding of what Hugo Chavez said regarding washing the "palto." It has NOTHING whatsoever to do with the obscenity a conspicuous fool has attempt to claim. Here is rabs commentary:
http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...

It's an actual EXPRESSION. It is used regularly in a conventional context. What could be clearer?

Anyone who would watch the video will see instantly when he/she hears the word "palto," the crowd does NOT react as it would if their president had said something obscene to them.

Someone truly unworthy is unwilling to admit he has been outed, has been caught lying his ass off, trying to slander someone by trying to put one over on non-Spanish speaking people.

You know enough to consider the source.

Go look at the video, wait to see his manner when he utters the phase with "palto" in it, which is NOT obscene in the conventional usage in Venezuela, look at the crowd, you will NOT see any reaction as if any obscenity has been dropped on them.

These bastards won't give up easily, but we have their number. They are completely outed, but you know they refuse to be honorable and admit it.
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