Sunday, June 13, 2010

The U.K.Telegraph Predicts That The Independent Climate Change Email Review Is About to Report Its Findings

UPDATE: The Independent Climate Change Email Review (6-16-2010) reports:

The publication date for the Independent Climate Change E-mails Review report has been set for 7 July. Full details of publication arrangements will be given nearer the time.

"One hot summer's day a Fox was strolling through an orchard till he came to a bunch of Grapes just ripening on a vine which had been trained over a lofty branch. 'Just the thing to quench my thirst,' quoth he. Drawing back a few paces, he took a run and a jump, and just missed the bunch. Turning round again with a One, Two, Three, he jumped up, but with no greater success. Again and again he tried after the tempting morsel, but at last had to give it up, and walked away with his nose in the air, saying: 'I am sure they are sour.'

It is easy to despise what you cannot get."---Aesop, "The Fox and the Grapes"

Gerald Warner, a scribbler for the U.K. Telegraph, is reporting a blog rumor that The Independent Climate Change Email Review is about to issue its report. Mr. Warner is claiming that the report will be a whitewash and a snow job.

The U.K. Telegraph (6-11-10) reports:

The estimable Bishop Hill is reporting [here] he has heard on the grapevine that the publication of the review into the Climategate emails conducted by Sir Muir Russell is “imminent”. The prospect seems to have provoked an acute absence of hysterical excitement.

This is the third investigation into Climategate and the universal expectation is that it will be as much a snow job as the previous two, though those precedents will be hard to beat: not since Tom Sawyer manipulated his friends into whitewashing his aunt’s fence has a team worked harder than the successive establishment figures who have exonerated the Decline Hiders from any culpability. [See full text, or skip the sour grapes and keep checking the The Independent Climate Change Email Review.]

Actually, I have been in an acute state of hysterical excitement for some time.

I wonder if the release of the report of the Independent Review, which is chaired by Sir Muir Russell, will coincide with some press announcement from the Norfolk Constabulary that they have identified the criminals who started the so-called "Climategate" scandal by reportedly hacking into the server of the University of East Anglia University's Climate Research Unit (CRU) and posting stolen e-mails on the server of an Internet security business" in Tomsk, Siberia. [See "Climategate: A Russian Connection?"---RFE/RL (12-7-09)]

The Financial Times (4-15-10) reports:

There have been indications that the hackers could have been based in Russia, and some experts believe they may have been hired by sceptics based in the US.

[For some background on Russian-based hackers, see my series of posts on Tomsk hackers, and especially my first post on "Climategate": "Did Russian "Hacker Patriots" Embarrass Proponents of Global Warming at the Climatic Research Unit (CRU) at the University of East Anglia?" (11-28-09); part 2 and Part 3.]

The FAQ's page of the Email Review notes that the Review has to cooperate with other investigators. These legal investigations can't be compromised, and they might affect the findings of the Email Review; therefore, it is possible that the progress of these investigations affects when the Independent Climate Change Email Review can complete and release their report:

This review is not a criminal investigation. However, Norfolk Constabulary are investigating criminal offences in relation to the hacking incident. The Information Commissioner is examining Freedom of Information and Data Protection issues. The Review has met Norfolk Constabulary and the Information Commissioner’s Office and will remain in touch on matters of mutual interest.

According to the Email Review's Confirmed Note of Actions from CRU Review Group Meeting, 10 and 11 May:

[On April 28, 2010] JM [Professor Jim Norton] updated the Review Team on the progress being made with respect to the forensic analyst who has been engaged by the UEA to examine the emails from the compromised CRU server.

This information about the investigation by UEA's forensic analyst was under the heading "Data Mining." The Meetings link of the Independent Climate Change Email Review has reported a number of times on the progress of the data mining and forensic investigation.

The Norfolk Constabulary are also investigating criminal offences in relation to the hacking of the UEA's server and have been assisted by the National Extremism Tactical Coordination Unit (NETCU).

In April, I wrote to the Norfolk Constabulary to ask them about about their investigation into the theft of the e-mails from the University of East Anglia's Climatic Research Unit (CRU).

Here is what the Norfolk Constabulary felt they could say in April:

Please find below our latest statement regarding the UEA investigation.

Detective Superintendent Julian Gregory who is leading the investigation said:

“This is a complex investigation and as a consequence will take some time to conclude. As with any investigation we will interview anyone who may have information which is of relevance to the enquiry but it would inappropriate to comment on any specific lines of enquiry.”

“Norfolk Constabulary continues its investigations into criminal offences in relation to a data breach at the University of East Anglia. During the enquiry officers have been working in liaison with the Office of the Information Commissioner and with officers from the National Domestic Extremism Team [See NETCU]. The UEA continues to co-operate with the enquiry; however, major investigations of this nature are of necessity very detailed and as a consequence can take time to reach a conclusion. It would be inappropriate to comment further at this stage."

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