North Koreans liken Obama to ‘monkey in rainforest’

JISHOU, HUNAN — Pissed that American officials, including President Barack Obama, accused it of hacking Sony’s computer systems, North Korean struck back this week, calling Obama “a monkey in a rainforest.” Another blogger, the infamous Chuck C. Johnson of, claims that the slur was not a slur, but a compliment. because reasons. He claims the remark as reported by the official North Korean news agency, KCNA, refers to an idiom, “Even monkeys fall from trees.” 심지어 원숭이는 나무에서 가을 The idiom means even experts can be wrong, or humans are infallible. I’m calling bullshit on this revisionism. The actual words as reported in Korean media are 열대수림 속에 서식하는 원숭이 which translates as “monkey that lives in a tropical forest,” which as far as I can tell is not an idiom. English reports of the North Korean remark have interpreted it correctly, as we might expect. I should confess that I don’t speak or understand Korean. Neither does Chuck Johnson. But I went to Korean language news agencies to find the original remark and their use of it. None referenced an idiomatic meaning, but quoted it verbatim. To me, this suggests it was intended a racial slur, or an ...

Site was down for a while

JISHOU, HUNAN — Spammers or hackers were attacking all the WordPress sites hosted at Planet Earth Hosting over the weekend, at least on the server this sites shares, so our hosts shut us all down until they could resolve the issue. So, if you tried to access Wheat-Dogg’s World recently, you probably got nothing at all. Even the DNS entries were coming up blank. But all seems OK now. We are back in operation. The hackers or spammers were apparently hitting the login page for WordPress, trying to gain access to the WP sites on the server. Earlier versions of WP may have had a vulnerability they were trying to exploit, but this site is up to date. The shutdown was frustrating, because there was nothing I could do about it, and I had blogs in mind to post over the weekend, which was when I had time to write. Now classes have started, so you’ll just have to wait a few more days.

Anonymous strikes hundreds of Chinese websites 2

JISHOU, HUNAN — Anonymous China (@AnonymousChina) has reportedly defaced more than 480 government and commercial websites in China in the last week, and has published user account information and emails from some. The attacks are continuing even today. This site was just defaced: The attacks came from out of the blue, but follow the recent government crackdown on Chinese microblog (weibo) sites, whose users must now reveal their real names to retain their accounts. Six vocal weibo users have been arrested, as well. As reported by the BBC and ZDNet, Anonymous China dropped its own index page into at least 485 websites across China, beginning the end of March. AnonymousChina has posted the list of the attacked sites at I did a spot check of some sites, and most were back online and seemingly normal. A few gave error 404 pages or MySQL server errors. A separate pastebin page (Message from @AnonymousChina – #GlobalRevolution) gives the reasons for the attacks. Hello, we are Anonymous. All these years the Chinese Government has subjected their people to unfair laws and unhealthy processes. People, each of you suffers from tyranny of that regime. Fight for justice, fight for freedom, fight for ...

Are web users really this dumb?

From the BBC: Boy, I hope you guys are smarter than this.

Gawker Media: Icebergs? We don’t care about no icebergs! 10

JISHOU, HUNAN — Present and former IT guys like me are probably thanking the Gods of Silicon that it wasn’t one of us who got caught with our pants down at Outsiders have been roaming around inside Gawker Media’s computer systems for the past month, downloading all kinds of stuff that supposed to be top secret. Users’ passwords are just a start. Gawker’s computer systems have been laid out like a murder victim on an autopsy table: access to their databases, FTP access to other computer systems, the entire source code of their website, a custom-designed content management system (CMS). It’s all out there in Internet-land now. Daniel Kennedy, who writes for, has a complete post-mortem of the victim. There’s a lot of lessons contained in it. Why did it happen? It seems Gawker’s officers made light of the hacking/cracking skills of coders who spend time at 4chan and similar coder hangouts. As the recent Wikileaks reprisal attacks on Amazon, Visa, Mastercard, PayPal and other big names have shown, no system is invulnerable. Calling these kind of experts “script kiddies,” as Gawker’s leaders did, is sure to piss some of them off. How did it happen? Details are ...

Back from oblivion — the longer version

JISHOU, HUNAN — This site went down not once, but twice because of some kind of Linux hack. Thanks to my ever-reliable webhosts, Planet Earth Hosting, and my own backups, the downtime was just a few hours total, but it was still a pain in the ass. The first incident was on the 6th, when someone named GhOST61 replaced all the index.xxxx pages in my public_html directory (and perhaps in everyone else’s on that server) with his own 40-byte taunt. My quick googlifying turned up a reference to a vulnerability in the Linux kernel that said GhOST61 has managed to exploit all over the place. The crew at PE Hosting had to take down the webserver, reinstall Linux, then restore the files from their backups. Some of my more recent posts were missing, but I was able to recover them from the feeds I send to my Facebook notes. The site was back to normal up several hours later. The following day I tried to post something here and got nowhere. The URL didn’t work; all I got was a Firefox message saying the server was not found. Turns out another hacker torpedoed the same webserver while the PE Hosting ...

Back from oblivion — the short version

JISHOU, HUNAN — Yesterday, my site was hacked. In fact, I think the entire server was hacked. Someone by the name of GhOST61 replaced every single file with his own 40-byte “neener neener — I hacked you” message. My webhost, Planet Earth Hosting, told me the hacker managed to plant a rootkit somehow on the webserver, which I gather took down my site and a bunch of others. For those who don’t know, a rootkit is a nasty little of code that works its way into operating system of a computer (Linux, in this case) and gives the code free access as the “root” user, also known as the superuser or the administrator account. With that access, the hacker’s code can do just about anything. All this guy did was replace our index pages — the first thing you see when you open a website — with his 40-byte taunt. It could have been much, much worse. As it is, my hosts had to restore the operating system on the server — that’s like completely reinstalling Windows, with consequent loss of data. Then they restored the data from their backups. Unfortunately, the most recent backup was from the 3rd, ...

And when you’re up, you’re up … 7

[Rescued, thanks to Facebook Notes.] JISHOU, HUNAN — And when the site went down, I was asleep. Someone by the name of GhOST61 hacked my public web root directory overnight, replacing every file with his own 40-byte masterpiece: Hacked By GHoST61 — TurkSec Rooted! Fortunately, his little infiltration was but a minor annoyance, since all I needed to do was replace his files with the correct ones. Once my daughter told me about the hack, I had everything (apparently) back to normal within an hour. It pays to have backups. Meanwhile, I asked my web host to see how this guy managed to screw up my sites. From what I hastily read on the Internet this afternoon, he (or she) has done this to hundreds of sites all over the world. I’d like to find out how he did it, so I can prevent it from happening again. As for your GhOST61, thanks for pointing out the fragility of our websites. Now, go fuck yourself.
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