Huffington Post Writer’s Slander of WikiLeaks for “Publishing” Turkish AKP Members’ Personal Info Exposed

Today (July 27 2016) we were drawn into a controversy over whether or not WikiLeaks was responsible for the release of personal information of Turkish ruling class party AKP members to the world via Internet.

Zeynep Tufekci, a writer for Huffington Post and “Faculty associate, Berkman Center for Internet and Society, Harvard University” – a US Department of State-funded organization – accused WikiLeaks of having iresponsibly “published” the personal information of every registered female voter in Turkey.  Our investigation of this charge proved – within just a few hours – that Tufecki’s cahrges were utterly baseless:  WikiLeaks had merly published a link to an enormous trove of hacked information from the AKP’s own files; they had never actually published the files in question.

Tufecki’s article provided a political cover for the attacks on WikiLeaks which immediately followed regarding their release of 23,000 emails from the Democratic National Committee that proved that the DNC actively sought to torpedo the candidacy of fake-socialist, real Democrat Bernie Sanders.

It turned out that Tufecki’s article – published before evidence proving that WikiLeaks had NOT been the original distributors of the AKP member docs was released – had erroneously accused WikiLeaks of “publishing” the AKP mambership list.  We challenged Tufecki’s assertions, and while we were engaged in that work, the man who actually released the AKP membership info contacted us to explain what had actually happened. Immediately upon receiving this new information we went to the Huffington Post website in an effort to correct the record in the comments to the slanderous article published by Tufecki.  We were unable to get our comment published on Huffington Post even after several attempts to post it.  While we were attempting to post this critique, Tufecki was simultaneously publishing a semi-retraction of her slander of WikiLeaks which actually RETAINED the principal slander that WikiLeaks “published” the AKP membership data (see new version: https://web.archive.org/web/20160728062731/http://www.huffingtonpost.com/zeynep-tufekci/wikileaks-erdogan-emails_b_11158792.html  Compare w previous version: https://web.archive.org/web/20160726145245/http://www.huffingtonpost.com/zeynep-tufekci/wikileaks-erdogan-emails_b_11158792.html ).

We are publishing our original comment to Huff Post which was apparently censored from their website this afternoon. (When we checked the comments thread for this article this morning – the next day – on Huff Post it was still not appearing on their site).  We will update this if necessary.

IWPCHI

***

IWPCHI’s original comment to article by Zeynep Tufekci censored by Huffington Post moderators: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/zeynep-tufekci/wikileaks-erdogan-emails_b_11158792.html

WikiLeaks in fact did not post the AKP member information. That information was uploaded to the Internet Archive early on the morning of 21 July 2016 by Michael Best and then he Tweeted the link to it (@NatSecGeek on Twitter). He’s an “analyst and writer at http://GlomarDisclosure.com .” WikiLeaks, apparently trusting him as a source, saw his Tweet and reTweeted the link to their followers about five hours after Best first Tweeted it. Four days later (on July 25th), Zeynep Tufecki, a “Faculty associate, Berkman Center for Internet and Society, Harvard University” – which is a US Department of State-supported outfit (see https://cyber.law.harvard.edu/about/support) published this article – without ever attempting to contact Best. In Tweets he sent to us today Best stated that “[Tufecki] didn’t contact me until I reached out… I’d’ve explained immediately if I had any idea what was going on. …but my name WAS on the page IDing me as the uploader… Plus my email address was in the metadata, and my Twitter has been open for DMs for exactly this reason.”
It should also be noted that no editor at the Huffington Post seems to have seen fit to have Tufecki contact Best before they published her article. Only once this HuffPo article appeared and it was brought to Mr. Best’s attention and he saw how WikiLeaks was being unfairly blamed for the release was he compelled to come forward on July 26 and reveal that it was he, not WikiLeaks, who uploaded the AKP membership info.
His article revealing himself as the original uploader is here: https://glomardisclosure.com/2016/07/26/the-who-and-how-of-the-akp-hack-dump-and-wikileaks-release/
So in a sense this whole affair appears to be something of a dark comedy of errors – except that the slander of WikiLeaks committed (inadvertently?) by Tufecki has been allowed to stand, and the damage to WikiLeaks’ reputation has been done and is extensive. Though HuffPo saw fit to append a note to the end of Tufecki’s article correcting the record to the effect that “WikiLeaks promoted links to the databases via its social media accounts but did not host those databases on its own site”, Tufecki’s article STILL asserts falsely (at the time we write this) “The leaked emails ***published by WikiLeaks*** were presented in a searchable database” [our emphasis]. This is slander, plain and simple.
Why do HuffPo and Tufecki continue to publish this damaging slander against WikiLeaks? It is well known that Huffington Post’s co-founded and editor-in-chief is a staunch supporter of the Obama Administration, which seeks to prosecute WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange – an Australian citizen – for exposing US Government crimes all over the world. Tufecki’s links to the US Dept. of State-supported “Berkman-Klein Center for Internet and Society” at Harvard (https://cyber.law.harvard.edu/people/zeynep) perhaps gives us another clue as to why her slander of WikiLeaks – if inadvertent – has not been rescinded.

While we do not support the WikiLeaks Party of Australia politically as it is a pro-capitalist political party, we do defend WikiLeaks; and we co-founded the “Friends of WikiLeaks – Chicago” group to defend the free-speech rights of WikiLeaks, its founder Julian Assange and its members from all attacks launched against them by the US Government and its global auxiliaries. At no time have we received material support of any kind from WikiLeaks, the WikiLeaks Party or any of their leadership.

Independent Workers Party of Chicago
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(Friends of WikiLeaks – Chicago is also on these social media outlets.)

 

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