All the conspiracy theories about the phantom electoral fraud to favor Joe Biden’s victory in the White House have proved unfounded. Among the most recent, that of the so-called ItalyGate (O ItalyDidIt) covered by Open Fact-checking in a January article, it was particularly attentive by the directly concerned Donald Trump who pressured the FBI to investigate the phantom manipulation “made in Italy“. This was announced on New York Times through the analysis of the emails provided to the American Congress.
According to the emails analyzed by the NOW, the then President-in-Office had asked White House Chief of Cabinet Mark Meadows to lobby the Justice Department and the FBI – particularly then Acting Attorney General Jeffrey A. Rosen – to initiate a investigation into alleged fraud in New Mexico and a series of phantom conspiracy theories aimed at overthrowing the American vote. Among these is that of the elusive Italian satellite that allegedly manipulated the electronic voting machines remotely, transforming the votes for Donald Trump in favor of Joe Biden.
In the emails Mark Meadows sent to Jeffrey A. Rosen, a video posted in December 2020 on Youtube was quoted where Brad Johnson, a former CIA employee, had supported the conspiracy theory. According to what was found by the NOW in email analyzes, Rosen had asked another Justice Department member to arrange a meeting between Johnson and the FBI, but the former CIA refused to speak.
The scandal of the elusive “Italian hand” broke out especially in the days of the assault on the Capitol where some people lost their lives during the clashes. On January 6, 2021, a document began to circulate, a “sworn statement” as defined by the conspiracy theorists, signed by a lawyer in Catania where it was claimed that a computer expert known as Arturo D’Elia had used one of the Leonardo satellites to manipulate the Dominion machines. during the vote. A fascinating story, as a starting point for a Hollywood film, but lacking from an IT point of view as the machines in question were not connected to the Net.
It wasn’t just a letter circulating. To give strength to the conspiracy theory was a video where the same lawyer from Catania, Prof. Alfio D’Urso, reported on an equal footing with the thesis against the computer scientist Arturo D’Elia:
Arturo D’Elia, former head of the IT Department of Leonardo SpA, was accused by the Naples Public Prosecutor’s Office for manipulating technological data and implanting viruses in the main computers of Leonardo SpA in December 2020.
D’Elia was deposited by the judge of the Council in Naples and in sworn testimony on November 4, 2020, on the instruction and direction of US people working at the US Embassy in Rome, undertook the operation to transfer the data of the U.S. elections of November 3, 2020 from Donald Trump’s significant margin of victory to Joe Biden in a number of states where Joe Biden was losing vote totals.
The defendant stated that he was working at Leonardo SPA’s Pescara facility and exploited the encryption capabilities of military-grade cyberwarfare to broadcast votes exchanged via the Torre del Fucino military satellite in Frankfurt, Germany.
Arturo D’Elia was arrested on December 6, 2020, but the accusations against him related to a fact dating back between May 2015 and January 2017. According to the Catania lawyer, the Italian computer scientist declared himself available to testify and reveal an alleged backup of the original data of the American vote as long as protection was guaranteed for him and his family. Prof. Alfio D’Urso had no right to speak on behalf of Arturo D’Elia, as his lawyers were first the lawyer Damiano Cardiello and then the lawyer Nicola Naponiello who, contacted by telephone by Open, categorically denied the content of the document released online: “A real falsehood!”.
The story was particularly popular in America thanks to a group of American lawyers, known as “Nations In Action” and led by Maria Strollo Zack, who had taken seriously the document signed by his colleague from Catania. Through a press release dated January 5, 2021, entitled “Press Release: Votes Switched throughout US Presidential Race – Institute for Good Governance”, the immediate suspension of American contracts with Leonardo SPA was requested (“Immediately strip Leonardo SpA of all contracts and seize assets “). An unsuccessful request, given the groundlessness of the news: given the Dominion voting system, and given the statements of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) of the time, it is not possible that a cyber attack such as to have compromised the vote in the United States.
The conspiracy theories on the vote manipulated by Italy do not end there. The hashtag ItalyDidIt, released during the publication of the “sworn statement” by the Catania lawyer, also took up the accusations against Matteo Renzi and Barack Obama, found guilty of having orchestrated electronic fraud through the Leonardo satellite with the help of the CIA. A “fake news”, as reported by colleagues from UsaToday. Among the accused was also the ally Giuseppe Conte, found guilty of not having supervised in favor of his friend Trump.
The emails analyzed by the New York Times show how Donald Trump pressured government agencies to investigate unsubstantiated phantom conspiracy theories, useful above all to influence the doubt about the electoral outcome. Doubts that for someone it was a certainty, triggering what was then the attack on Capitol Hill where the numerous supporters of the QAnon theory took part.
What has changed since January 10th
Following the Open Fact-checking article on the ItalyGate-ItalyDidIt case, some of the documents disseminated online have been removed either by direct diffusers or by platforms. The video of the lawyer from Catania, hosted in MP4 format and disseminated by the Tickercandy.com site, has been removed and today the same domain points to the Twitter account @TickerCandy with just 47 followers. Maria Zack’s Youtube video on the phantom ItalyDidIt scandal has disappeared as the channel that hosted it was closed by its owner. The lawyer group site has changed domain, since Nationsinaction.org a Italy-did-it.com, continuing to support the conspiracy theory.
In the press release from the lawyers, an article translated from Italian into English was linked in which the phantom theories spread by an Italian site were reported. The PDF file of the translation presented in the metadata the name of Michele Roosevelt Edwards, the same name of the president of Usaerospace Partners who spoke on June 24, 2020 at the Transport Commission regarding the expression of interest presented for Alitalia. The file has been removed and Google gives us the following reason: «Sorry. You cannot access this item because it violates our Terms of Service ».