In 2007 an article on Italian Wikipedia was created about the Venezuelan politician Alejandro Peña Esclusa.
It was obviously created by his political opponents, the regime of Hugo Chávez and its supporters, in order to defame him. Since then a large number of attempts have been made to remove the libel, to no avail. Please look at the discussion and history pages. I furthermore contacted the top legal counsel of the Wikipedia Foundation back in July, but that was equally fruitless. The only result from my insistent arguments for removing the libel and making the article un-biased was to be permanently banned from Italian Wikipedia.
Peña Esclusa was framed for terrorism and jailed in July. The Wikipedia article did a tremendous amount of harm to him, as it was spread over the blogosphere in a machine-translated form, and convinced Internet users that he was a very bad person (fascist, violent, advocating military dictatorships) why they refrained from speaking up in his defense. He is to this day sitting in a 2 x 3 m cell in the jail of the political police in Caracas.
The most important libel in the article today is a paragraph that says, in short, that “he is furthermore a member of TFP, and some members of that organization have been accused of trying to murder Pope John Paul II, and President Reagan. TFP has been banned in several countries for being too extremist.” I first removed every statement after the first comma, since it belongs in the article about TFP, not this one. However, it was promptly reinserted.
Yesterday I got a chance to ask APE himself about his membership in TFP, and he gave me a quote from Ch 17 in his own book “350” where he explicitly says that he has NEVER been a member of TFP. I then went to another computer, to avoid the permanent block, and removed the entire paragraph, left a note referring to the discussion page, and in the discussion page I gave the quote and the reference. Three minutes later it was undone, asking for motivation (apparently ignoring what I wrote). I deleted it again, assuming that the other user would see and understand the note in the talk page. But a few minutes later an editor not only reinserted the libel without comment, but also blocked the IP I was at. I went out on Twitter and the following day two users removed the libel, one with a note referring to the talk page, but in both cases it was promptly reinserted by two different users. Thus, within 27 hours 4 different users reinserted the libel. To me it indicates that there is a conspiracy to defame Mr. Peña Esclusa.
Alejandro Peña Esclusa is facing prosecution in Venezuela, now a communist dictatorship where the entire executive, legislative, and judicial powers are in the hands of “Commander President” Hugo Chávez (he now calls himself Comandante in imitation of the Cuban revolutionaries, and the last step of the Sovietization took place at the end of December last year). He has a ministry of propaganda with an international TV network at its disposal (TeleSur). It is beyond likely that he also has a significant number of staff dedicated to Internet propaganda, and many of those are apparently engaged in editing Wikipedia. One example may be user Skyluke, who sported a communist symbol on his user-page while he edited the libelous article.
The above was sent this evening to the Wikipedia Arbitration Committee. I will report significant developments. First update is that the paragraph was deleted and reinserted a fifth time shortly after this letter was sent.
Update 2011-01-02: Using a still-not-blocked computer to access Italian Wikipedia, I wrote the following explicit warning and explanation of why is libelous: “The second paragraph states that Mr. Peña Esclusa is a member of TFP (Tradition Family Property). There is NO SOURCE given for that claim. Here is a referenced quote from the man himself saying that he has never been a member. Yet 5 different users have reinserted the libel within 48 hours. Furthermore, the rest of the paragraph does not belong in this article but in the article about TFP, and it is clearly present here for the sole purpose of defamation. The man himself being held as a political prisoner in a 2 x 3 m cell without windows and with bare concrete floor. This article contributed materially to him being framed and jailed. He has not ruled out a large lawsuit of the Wikipedia Foundation, or the users who have inserted the libelous claims in full knowledge that they were defamatory. Of course, any user that reinserted the libel after user Lindorm warned of it above in July may be held to an especially high standard.” The entire paragraph was removed by Vituzzu 6 hours later. I also removed the libelous paragraph explaining that it was removed for libel, but it was promptly reinserted by user Valerio79, who also protected the page from “vandalism”, as in all the other cases without any motivation or explanation of why the paragraph belonged there. If anybody doubted that it was communist propaganda, the sixth user to enter the fray in the past few days left us no doubt: User Jaqen added a reference to the statement that Mr. Peña Esclusa is a member of TFP; The source is the official propaganda of Bolivia.
There is no doubt in my mind that this is a conspiracy by a criminal network, in which Italy may be deeply immersed. As is well-known, Peña Esclusa’s main target of criticism is Hugo Chávez (who is entirely beholden to Castro’s Cuba, to the extent that Cubans control his government, suck the oil from Venezuela’s ground like petro-vampires, and lately also has converted Venezuela to a Cuban or Soviet style communist dictatorship). Chávez in turn owns Bolivia’s president Evo Morales, so nothing from Bolivia has any value whatsoever as a reference against Peña Esclusa. Furthermore, this axis is closely connected not only to the communist dictator Lukashenko in Belorus, and not only to Ahmedinejad in Iran, but also to Putin in Russia – who in turn is a close friend of Berlusconi in Italy. This axis seems to be less about ideology and more about corruption. They are putting money in their own pockets in a scale that is unheard of in the history of mankind, and Alejandro Peña Esclusa, with his fierce defense of democracy and call for a peaceful uprising was apparently too big a threat for these greedy despots and their useful idiots on the Internet.