Earlier this month the NY Times off-handedly admitted that the Hunter Biden laptop story appeared to be true:
People familiar with the investigation said prosecutors had examined emails between Mr. Biden, Mr. Archer and others about Burisma and other foreign business activity. Those emails were obtained by The New York Times from a cache of files that appears to have come from a laptop abandoned by Mr. Biden in a Delaware repair shop. The email and others in the cache were authenticated by people familiar with them and with the investigation.
That paragraph very much upset the apple cart claiming the Hunter Biden laptop story was an obvious case of Russian disinformation or, alternatively, the result of malicious hacking. Both excuses were used to help bury the story when it first appeared a few weeks before the 2020 election.
Now that the Times has opened the door to admitting the laptop is real, the Washington Post has contacted to experts who have also confirmed that at least 22,000 emails on the drive, and some of the other files and documents, are real.
Thousands of emails purportedly from the laptop computer of Hunter Biden, President Biden’s son, are authentic communications that can be verified through cryptographic signatures from Google and other technology companies, say two security experts who examined the data at the request of The Washington Post.
The verifiable emails are a small fraction of 217 gigabytes of data provided to The Post on a portable hard drive by Republican activist Jack Maxey. He said the contents of the portable drive originated from Biden’s MacBook Pro, which Biden reportedly dropped off at a computer repair shop in Wilmington, Del., in April 2019 and never reclaimed.
But the Post isn’t willing to go as far as to say that the drive appears to be legitimate. In fact they say the argument over the laptop is not resolved by their analysts’ look at the data.
Many Republicans have portrayed this data as offering evidence of misbehavior by Hunter Biden that implicated his father in scandal, while Democrats have dismissed it as probable disinformation, perhaps pushed by Russian operatives acting in a well-documented effort to undermine Biden. Facebook and Twitter in 2020 restricted distribution of stories about the drive’s contents out of concern that the revelations might have resulted from a nefarious hacking campaign intended to upend the election, much as Russian hacks of sensitive Democratic Party emails shaped the trajectory of the 2016 election.
The Washington Post’s forensic findings are unlikely to resolve that debate, offering instead only the limited revelation that some of the data on the portable drive appears to be authentic. The security experts who examined the data for The Post struggled to reach definitive conclusions about the contents as a whole, including whether all of it originated from a single computer or could have been assembled from files from multiple computers and put on the portable drive…
“No evidence of tampering was discovered, but as noted throughout, several key pieces of evidence useful in discovering tampering were not available,” Williams’ reports concluded.
Deep into the story we learn that one of the emails the analysts were able to verify is one that was highlighted in one of the original NY Post stories about the laptop. This particular email involved Vadym Pozharskyi, an adviser to Ukrainian gas company Burisma who thanked Hunter Biden for giving him an opportunity to “meet your father.”
One of the verified emails from Pozharskyi, which was the focus of one of the initial stories from the New York Post, was written on April 17, 2015. It thanked Hunter Biden “for inviting me to DC and giving me an opportunity to meet your father and spent [sic] some time together.”
When the email first emerged in the New York Post about three weeks before the 2020 election, the Biden campaign and Hunter Biden’s lawyer both denied that Pozharskyi had ever met with Joe Biden. Asked recently about the email, the White House pointed to the previous denials, which The Post has examined in detail.
That link goes to a Glenn Kessler review of the dinner where Pozharskyi may or may not have met Joe Biden as the email claimed. But Kessler’s piece had its own problems. It stated that Pozharskyi wasn’t on an early guest list:
A tentative guest list for the event, as recounted in the New York Post from one of Hunter Biden’s emails three weeks before the dinner, did not include Pozharskyi. So it’s still unclear how the vice president could have met him, unless he was a last-minute addition. (Alex Karloutsos also is not included on that early list.) The Biden campaign, after a comprehensive review, had said a meeting never took place between Joe Biden and Pozharskyi.
But the author of the NY Post story Kessler was reviewing pointed out that the guest list included “Vadym” which, as noted above, is Pozharskyi’s first name.
3. You claim: “A tentative guest list for the event, as recounted in the @nypost from one of Hunter Biden’s emails three weeks before the dinner, did not include Pozharskyi.”
Here it is, like we said: “Vadym”. On the guest list Hunter wrote a month before the dinner. So sloppy. pic.twitter.com/dWsvspIHWN
— Miranda Devine (@mirandadevine) June 8, 2021
In any case, it’s worth pointing out that the Daily Caller did a similar investigation and concluded this particular Pozharskyi email was real back in October 2020, before the election.
An email Hunter Biden received in April 2015 from a Burisma executive discussing an introduction to then-Vice President Joe Biden, which lies at the heart of a New York Post investigation, is unquestionably authentic, a cybersecurity expert told the Daily Caller News Foundation on Thursday…
[Robert] Graham, who has been cited as a cybersecurity expert in The Washington Post, the Associated Press, Wired, Engadget and other news and technology outlets, told the DCNF that he used a cryptographic signature found in the email’s metadata to validate that an account used by Vadym Pozharsky, an advisor to Burisma’s board of directors, emailed Hunter Biden on April 17, 2015.
Not only was this confirmed long ago, it was confirmed in exactly the same way, using a cryptographic signature. It’s odd that the Post story today never mentions that the Daily Caller beat them to this scoop by 17 months.
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