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2.6TB Data Leak Reveals Corruption Among World Leaders

An international team of journalists has obtained what it’s referring to as the “biggest leak in history”: A 2.6-terabyte stash of data about offshore savings and tax havens from Panama-based legal firm Mossack Fonseca.

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It’s claimed that 370 reporters from 100 different media organizations have worked on the project—being referred to as the Panama Papers—over the last year, which has now been published with some fanfare by The Guardian and German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung. The 2.6 terabytes of data are made up of over 11.5 million files, which makes it a far bigger leak than the diplomatic cables uncovered by WikiLeaks in 2010 or the stash of NSA documents released by Edward Snowden in 2013. It’s not yet clear how the documents were made available to the journalists.

Within the files lurk all kinds of revelations, many of which will come to light over the course of the coming weeks as the news organizations involved in the project publish a series of reports. But at the time of writing, The Guardian has published a seres of articles which describe:

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The data itself comes from Mossack Fonseca, a law firm that’s based in Panama. It manages offshore firms, provides financial services, and is, according the The Guardian, the fourth biggest offshore services provider in the world. In a response to the leak, the company declined to discuss individual clients, but did write that its “services are regulated on multiple levels, often by overlapping agencies, and we have a strong compliance record,” adding that they are “responsible members of the global financial and business community.”

[The Guardian]

Contributing Editor at Gizmodo. An ex-engineer writing about science and technology.

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DISCUSSION

Unfortunately the leaker has made the dreadful mistake of turning to the western corporate media to publicise the results. In consequence the first major story, published today by the Guardian, is all about Vladimir Putin.

But why focus on Russia? Russian wealth is only a tiny minority of the money hidden away with the aid of Mossack Fonseca. In fact, it soon becomes obvious that the selective reporting is going to stink.

The Suddeutsche Zeitung, which received the leak, gives a detailed explanation of the methodology the corporate media used to search the files. The main search they have done is for names associated with breaking UN sanctions regimes. The Guardian reports this too and helpfully lists those countries as Zimbabwe, North Korea, Russia and Syria. The filtering of this Mossack Fonseca information by the corporate media follows a direct western governmental agenda. There is no mention at all of use of Mossack Fonseca by massive western corporations or western billionaires – the main customers. And the Guardian is quick to reassure that “much of the leaked material will remain private.”

What do you expect? The leak is being managed by the grandly but laughably named “International Consortium of Investigative Journalists”, which is funded and organised entirely by the USA’s Center for Public Integrity. Their funders include

Ford Foundation
Carnegie Endowment
Rockefeller Family Fund
W K Kellogg Foundation
Open Society Foundation (Soros)

among many others. Do not expect a genuine expose of western capitalism. The dirty secrets of western corporations will remain unpublished.

Expect hits at Russia, Iran and Syria and some tiny “balancing” western country like Iceland. A superannuated UK peer or two will be sacrificed – someone already with dementia.

The corporate media – the Guardian and BBC in the UK – have exclusive access to the database which you and I cannot see. They are protecting themselves from even seeing western corporations’ sensitive information by only looking at those documents which are brought up by specific searches such as UN sanctions busters. Never forget the Guardian smashed its copies of the Snowden files on the instruction of MI6.

What if they did Mossack Fonseca database searches on the owners of all the corporate media and their companies, and all the editors and senior corporate media journalists? What if they did Mossack Fonseca searches on all the most senior people at the BBC? What if they did Mossack Fonseca searches on every donor to the Center for Public Integrity and their companies?

What if they did Mossack Fonseca searches on every listed company in the western stock exchanges, and on every western millionaire they could trace?

That would be much more interesting. I know Russia and China are corrupt, you don’t have to tell me that. What if you look at things that we might, here in the west, be able to rise up and do something about?

And what if you corporate lapdogs let the people see the actual data?