06 March 2017

Trump's worst deal

From The New Yorker:

Sent from my iPhone : 215.866.6184

Begin forwarded message:

From: The New Yorker <NewYorker@newsletter.newyorker.com>
Date: March 6, 2017 at 4:08:02 PM EST
To: mseymour@proofmark.com
Subject: Donald Trump's Worst Deal
Reply-To: NewYorker@newsletter.newyorker.com

March 6th, 2017 Daily Newsletter w graf - The New Yorker

The New Yorker

The Trump Tower Baku never opened. Trump partnered with an Azerbaijani family that U.S. officials called notoriously unethical.

A Reporter at Large|March 13, 2017

Donald Trump's Worst Deal

From the Reporter's Desk

For my story in this week's magazine, I spent nine days reporting in Azerbaijan, where the government is famous for conducting surveillance on journalists. A reporter who had worked in the country told me to assume that the government was eavesdropping on all of my conversations and would likely place cameras in my hotel room. A few years ago, security services installed a camera in the bedroom of the Azerbaijani journalist Khadija Ismayilova, and released video of her in an intimate act with a boyfriend.


My wife and I came up with code words so I could let her know if she needed to call the U.S. Embassy or my editor. I left my iPhone at home. In Azerbaijan, I got two cell phones. One was officially registered to me; the other was purchased for me by a local contact. I turned off the official phone and took out the battery when I visited sources, because I had heard that the intelligence service would likely track my movements through my phone. I had oddly polite conversations with my wife every day. I used the encrypted app Signal to send messages and make calls.


When I met Ismayilova, who has spent time in jail and been monitored by the government for many years, I explained all my precautions. She laughed. She said she doesn't bother anymore. I was relieved, because I realized that when I went to her house I had forgotten to take precautions, and had left the battery in my official phone. –Adam Davidson

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