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Condom timeline, 2

I should make this a real post, but I can't bear to post about condoms in Christmas Eve. The look of the English language Stockholm News isn't a confidence builder (online only, for expats, with typos, including the sourcing), but the writer says that tests from the Swedish National Laboratory of Forensic Science show that Assange tore the condom. A commenter cries foul, claims mistranslation, and links to the original story. Here's that story, Google-translated from Verdens Gang, a a Norwegian tabloid. Citing "police reports," which I have to assume were the same reports that the Guardian redacted:

Kvinnen er overbevist om at Assange slet i stykker kondomet med vilje og deretter fortsatte samleiet med etterfølgende utløsning, heter det i rapporten som er skrevet etter avhøret av kvinnen den 20. The woman is convinced that Assange tore apart the condom on purpose and then continued intercourse with subsequent firing ....

[P]olitiavhøret forteller kvinnen at Assange under samleiet begynte å fikle med kondomet - og at hun hørte en lyd som gjorde henne redd for at han forsøkte å ta det av. The police questioned the woman said that during sex Assange began fidgeting with condoms - and that she heard a sound that made her fear that he tried to remove it. ...

Stockholms-politiet har hyret inn en sakkyndig ved Statens kriminaltekniska laboratorium (SKL) i Sverige til å vurdere skadene på kondomet som Assange brukte under samleiet. Stockholm police have hired an expert at the National Laboratory of Forensic Science (SKL) in Sweden to assess the damage to the condom as Assange used during sexual intercourse.

I rapporten som den sakkyndige har skrevet, kommer det frem at kondomet har «gjennomgående skader i den fremste delen, med små riper i nærheten av skaden». In the report that the expert has written, it emerges that the condom has "consistently injuries in the front part, with small scratches near the injury." Skaden skal ikke være av en slik karakter at det vitner om bruk av et verktøy, ifølge vedkommende som har undersøkt kondomet. The injury should not be of such nature that it bears witness to the use of a tool, according to the person who has studied condom.

- Testresultatet taler for at skaden i den fremste delen av kondomet kommer av at kondomet er blitt slitt i stykker, heter det i rapporten. - Test results indicate that the damage in the front part of the condom coming off the condom is worn to pieces, "the report said.

Rapporten konkluderer videre med at resultatet av undersøkelsen er innenfor den såkalte «Grad+2», som ifølge SKL betyr at det er liten sannsynlighet for at det finnes noen annen forklaring enn hypotesen. The report also concludes that the results of the survey are within the so-called "Level 2", which according to SKL means that there is little likelihood that there is no other explanation than the hypothesis.

Rapporten sier ingenting om skaden kan skyldes at Assange egenhendig har forsøkt å ødelegge den, eller om det kan ha skjedd som følge av et uhell. The report says nothing about the damage may be caused Assange handedly tried to destroy it, or it may have been caused as a result of an accident.

Frustratingly, the two key sentences -- "The injury should not be of such nature that it bears witness to the use of a tool", and "The report says nothing about the damage may be caused Assange handedly tried to destroy it, or it may have been caused as a result of an accident" -- are like English, but not English. I read them to say that "the condom was torn," but in that case the forensic evidence tells us only what we already knew.

Interestingly, if a tool was not used, and it can be shown that Assange tore the condom, (a) Aeryl's "Nail Hypothesis" could be right, and but (b) my "He couldn't have done it unseen" objection could also be right. That would also make the condom Marianne Ny's blue dress.

Make of this what you will. If we have any Norwegian readers who aren't chowing down their ludefisk tonight, elucidation would be appreciated.

NOTE And why is this story appearing in a Norwegian tab, only to be reprinted in a Swedish English paper? If I had my tinfoil hat on, that would look an awful lot like our own government's strategy of planting false stories in the foreign press, so that they can then be repeated at home. And why didn't this appear in the Guardian? And who tipped off the press to call Assange on Saturday morning?

Comments

affinis's picture
Submitted by affinis on

"Test results indicate that the damage in the front part of the condom coming off the condom is worn to pieces" I take this to (most likely) say that the reservoir tip, or part of the reservior tip, is "worn to pieces" - translation by Norwegian-English dictionary also comes up with "worn to bits".

To my mind, the most likely basis for excluding a tool is a lack of sharp or neat edges. That the edges of the tear or perforation were jagged or abraded (which would fit with the "worn to pieces" or "worn to bits"). That would make the nail hypothesis (cutting/pinching with a nail) somewhat less likely to my mind - but wouldn't exclude a tear caused by tension (bursting/popping, stress, yanking, etc.) or an abrasion injury of some sort (potentially consistent with "small scratches" near the perforation).
All the usual translation and speculative interpretation caveats apply here.
Basically, as you note, the report just seems to tell us that the condom was torn or perforated (and probably wasn't cut with a tool). Not much new.

Well, off to RL - there are better ways to spend Christmas.
Merry Christmas all!

Submitted by lambert on

... wanted for translation, if you've finished your ludefisk. I don't feel like parsing a Google translation of a Norwegian redaction of a Swedish police report any more than I already have.

That said, if the Swedish paper is right, Assange isn't just toast, but burnt toast [caveats on "we make our own reality" intel involvement with unlimited budget].

Submitted by wlarip on

and I don't know what ludefisk is.

But I do have an experience to relate regarding machine translation.

At the height of the Cold War, there was lot of governmental interest in building a English-Russian-English translation computer program.

After the best effort of the geeks, the test was to translate the phrase:

"The spirit is willing but the flesh is weak."

The machine translated it into Russian and translated the Russian translation back into English.

The response was:

"The whiskey's ok but the meat's gone bad."

Caveat Emptor.

Submitted by hipparchia on

"The whiskey's ok but the meat's gone bad."

lol!

i tried a couple of different machine translators on the norwegian article. i kid you not, one of them returned something to the effect of: the report didn't say whether assange assassinated the condom or if it was just bad luck.

affinis's picture
Submitted by affinis on

Secondary report B ("it is noted that the condom has been destroyed on purpose") appears to flatly contradict its referenced primary source A ("The report says nothing about the damage may be caused Assange handedly tried to destroy it, or it may have been caused as a result of an accident." - another automatic translator gives ending clause as "or able have happened as bad luck." - though caveat emptor with machine translation). The commenter that flagged the Stockholm News article and cried "FOUL! The VG article says nothing of the sort! Read it yourself!" identified as "Norwegian" and was likely natively reading the Verdens Gang article he linked.
Separate from intel involvement, newspapers like to make money and writers want juicy stories - who's going to read an article that just says the condom was torn (yawn).
That said, if the Swedish paper is right, Assange isn't just toast, but burnt toast
If this is right, then Bill Clinton is toast.