Syrian President’s Email Hacked By AnonymousBy: Drew Bowling - February 8, 2012
Okay, I’m not denigrating Anonymous’ obvious skill with the hacking of the computers. They’ve got some formidable chops. But can it really be considered hacking if the hacked person’s password for their email account is “12345”? I’m sure there was more computer savvy trickery involved than simply tapping in the first five digits on a keyboard, but can we still consider it “hacking” if the person getting hacked is really that naive about protecting his email account?
Seriously, I’ve seen bubble gum dispensers with better security than Assad’s email account but, well, it doesn’t matter. It’s what happened to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and his email account and, yes, the password to his account really was “12345.” Anonymous was able to access 78 inboxes of Assad’s aides and advisers, some of whom also used the incredible password, “12345.” That Assad puts a higher priority on slaughtering the inhabitants of the country he presides over than email security is a completely new level of wholesale revulsion.
And speaking of that atrocity, Anonymous found some peculiar information that provides a glimpse into how Assad prepared for a recent interview with Barbara Walters wherein he denied that his government was killing citizens in Syria. “We don’t kill our people,” Assad told Walters. “No government in the world kills its people, unless it’s led by a crazy person.”
One of the leaked documents was a list of talking points designed to prep Assad for his interview with Walters in December. The document is chilling with how it aims to portray the Syrian government as a unlawfully besieged entity and completely denies any of the violence inflicted upon the people of Syria. Impossibly, the document actually attempt to portray the Syrian government as the victim of the conflict by recommending Assad talk about “how many soldiers and security forces have been killed” and that “the American audience doesn’t really care about reform” so then “a brief mention of the reforms done in the past couple of months is more than enough.” It even invokes Obama’s lessened popularity as a basis for why the United States doesn’t have enough clout or moral authority to criticize Assad’s government.
Oh, and the document also says it doesn’t torture people, but I have difficulty believing that people who have been arrested and withheld by the government will agree with that claim.
The depiction that Assad offers of Syria in the interview along with how defensive this leaked memo doesn’t gibe with anybody I’ve seen on Twitter. Here’s a sample of what people are saying:
Yeah. Nobody getting killed around there.
Assad’s brutal denial of any of it only emphasizes the importance of groups like Anonymous that are willing to penetrate the sickening cover-up by governments willing to murder and terrorize its own citizens. Keep 12345-ing the hell out of those despots.