Museum Finds Piece Of WWII History For Sale On EBay

A Lorentz teleprinter, used by the Nazis to transmit highly complex encrypted messages.

A Lorentz teleprinter, used by the Nazis to transmit highly complex encrypted messages. The National Museum of Computing hide caption

toggle caption The National Museum of Computing

A British museum has been searching for parts of the Lorenz cipher machine, used by the Nazis in World War II to send secret messages.

So when sharp-eyed museum volunteers happened upon what appeared to be a Lorenz teleprinter on eBay, it almost seemed too good to be true.

National Museum of Computing volunteer John Whetter went to Essex to investigate. There, he found “the keyboard being kept, in its original case, on the floor of a shed ‘with rubbish all over it’,” the BBC reports.

“I think it was described as a telegram machine, but we recognised it as a Lorenz teleprinter,” Whetter tells The Guardian. The teleprinter is the portion of the machine that actually transmits the encrypted message.

Wetter tells the BBC that they bought the device for about $14: “We said ‘Thank you very much, how much was it again?’ She said ‘£9.50’, so we said ‘Here’s a £10 note – keep the change!'”

Even then, it’s real value wasn’t yet clear. A spokesman for the museum told The Two-Way in an email that at the time of the purchase, “the Lorenz teleprinter was thought to be a relatively common commercial Lorenz teleprinter. Its military origins came to light only when it was being refurbished.”

Its military history was clear when the museum discovered the cleaned-up machine was “complete with swastika detailing and even a special key for the runic Waffen-SS insignia,” the Guardian reported.

British codebreakers using modified British Typex cipher machines in Hut 6 at Bletchley Park, Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire in 1942. Bletchley Park was the British forces' intelligence centre during WWII, where cryptographers deciphered top-secret military communiques between Hitler and his armed forces. These communiques were encrypted in the Lorenz code which the Germans considered unbreakable.

British codebreakers using modified British Typex cipher machines in Hut 6 at Bletchley Park, Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire in 1942. Bletchley Park was the British forces’ intelligence centre during WWII, where cryptographers deciphered top-secret military communiques between Hitler and his armed forces. These communiques were encrypted in the Lorenz code which the Germans considered unbreakable. Bletchley Park Trust/SSPL via Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption Bletchley Park Trust/SSPL via Getty Images

According to the museum, the Lorenz cipher was even more complex than the Enigma code used by the Nazis. And British mathematician Bill Tutte is credited with “shortening the war and saving countless lives” when he broke the code. He deduced “the architecture of a Lorenz machine without ever having seen it,” which allowed the Allies to “read German High Command’s top secret messages.” They eventually used a device called the Colossus to quickly decrypt the transmissions.

This proved especially important ahead of D-Day, the museum says, “as the Allies knew Hitler had swallowed the bait story that landings would be at Calais.”

The museum recently received a Lorentz SZ42 machine (the device that does the actual encryption) on long-term loan from the Norwegian Armed Forces Museum.

The museum says it plans to “restore the machine to working order” but they’re missing a drive motor and are appealing for help finding one. Once it’s up and running, they’ll be able to “tell from beginning to end the tale of how the allies broke Germany’s secret codes,” the Guardian reported.

Lorenz SZ42 showing the missing motor (top) as seen in a machine in the USA.

Lorenz SZ42 showing the missing motor (top) as seen in a machine in the USA. The National Museum of Computing hide caption

toggle caption The National Museum of Computing

This is what it looks like, in case you happen to have one lying around!

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More Than 700 Migrants Feared Dead In Three Separate Mediterranean Shipwrecks

Italian marines rescue migrants from the capsized boat.

Italian marines rescue migrants from the capsized boat. Anadolu Agency/Getty Images hide caption

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The U.N. Refugee Agency and Italian authorities say they fear at least 700 migrants have died in three separate shipwrecks in the Mediterranean since last Wednesday.

This comes amid a surge of migrants attempting to make the dangerous crossing between Libya and Italy, UNHCR spokesperson William Spindler tells The Two-Way. He adds that search and rescue teams have been able to save 14,000 people making the crossing during the past week.

The first incident happened last Wednesday, he says, on a fishing boat carrying hundreds of migrants: “When people saw a rescue ship approaching they all rushed to one side, and that caused the boat to lift and flip over.”

He says many people fell into the sea — “but inside the ship, in the hold, there were hundreds of people – and about a hundred are still missing, presumed to have drowned.”

The Italian Coast Guard captured this harrowing sequence of images of the boat flipping over, as it worked to rescue the migrants:

Migrants in an overcrowded boat, which was about to capsize, are rescued by Bettica and Bergamini ships of Italian Navy at Sicilian Strait, between Libya and Italy, in Mediterranean sea on Wednesday.

Migrants in an overcrowded boat, which was about to capsize, are rescued by Bettica and Bergamini ships of Italian Navy at Sicilian Strait, between Libya and Italy, in Mediterranean sea on Wednesday. Anadolu Agency/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Migrants in an overcrowded boat, which was about to capsize, are rescued by Bettica and Bergamini ships of Italian Navy at Sicilian Strait, between Libya and Italy, in Mediterranean sea on Wednesday.

Migrants in an overcrowded boat, which was about to capsize, are rescued by Bettica and Bergamini ships of Italian Navy at Sicilian Strait, between Libya and Italy, in Mediterranean sea on Wednesday. Anadolu Agency/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

The capsized boat on Wednesday.

The capsized boat on Wednesday. Anadolu Agency/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Spindler says that as many as 550 people are feared dead from a separate shipwreck on Thursday. “It was being pulled by a fishing boat and it started to take on water and to sink. And the boat that was pulling it cut the rope that was being used to pull it so that it would not also go down,” Spindler says.

A survivor of that shipwreck says passengers worked for hours to bail out the water-logged boat before the line was cut. He recounts the ordeal to the Associated Press:

“One survivor from Eritrea, 21-year-old Filmon Selomon, told The Associated Press that water started seeping into the second boat after three hours of navigation, and that the migrants tried vainly to get the water out of the sinking boat.

“‘It was very hard because the water was coming from everywhere. We tried for six hours after which we said it was not possible anymore,’ he said through an interpreter.

“He jumped into the water and swam to the other boat before the tow line on the navigable boat was cut to prevent it from sinking when the other went down.”

Finally, Spindler says the Italian Coast Guard retrieved 45 bodies from a separate shipwreck. The rescuers were able to save 135 people in that incident, according to the AP.

The three boats are believed to have departed from Libya and most of the migrants on them were from countries in sub-Saharan Africa, such as Nigeria, Gambia, Somalia, Ivory Coast and Guinea. And as NPR’s Sylivia Poggioli tells our Newscast unit, Italian officials say they’ve seen “a big increase in the number of women and small children.”

Spindler adds that information from these wrecks can be slow to arrive because they’re so far off the coast – in some cases, more than a day’s sailing away. “We might still hear about more cases of people either drowning or being missing,” he says.

Sunday counting victims. Macabre exercise:will the world realize the over 700 pp would have deserved a safe passage? pic.twitter.com/c8Puo3ktkF

— Carlotta Sami (@CarlottaSami) May 29, 2016

As The Associated Press notes, it’s impossible to verify exact death tolls “because the bodies went missing in the open sea.” The wire service adds that “humanitarian organizations and investigating authorities typically rely on survivors’ accounts to piece together what happened, relying on overlapping accounts to establish a level of veracity.”

The tragedies this week bring the death toll in the Mediterranean to more than 2,000 people, Spindler says.

Last year saw some 3,700 reported casualties. “We are not there yet, but we are also not in the peak of the sailing season,” Spindler says. That’s in July and August, he says, when the weather is at its calmest.

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Gorilla Killed To Save Boy At Cincinnati Zoo

After a 4-year-old boy slipped into the gorilla enclosure on a crowded day at the Cincinnati Zoo, a security team killed the gorilla to save the child.

The zoo said in a statement that the boy “fell into the exhibit’s moat.” A male Western Lowland gorilla was in the yard with the child – and “the Zoo’s Dangerous Animal Response Team responded to the life-threatening situation and made the difficult decision to dispatch the gorilla (Harambe).”

Harrowing video released by the WLWT television channel shows 17-year-old Harabe handling the child and standing over him in the enclosure’s moat. The boy’s mother can be heard pleading for help.

WLWT YouTube

The child was rushed to a local hospital and according to the zoo, he was alert while transported. Police said the boy “was treated for serious, but non-life threatening injuries,” Cincinnati.com reported.

“The Zoo security team’s quick response saved the child’s life. We are all devastated that this tragic accident resulted in the death of a critically-endangered gorilla,” Zoo Director Thane Maynard said in the statement. “This is a huge loss for the Zoo family and the gorilla population worldwide.”

“You’re talking about an animal that’s over 400 pounds and extremely strong. So no, the child wasn’t under attack but all sorts of things could happen in a situation like that. He certainly was at risk,” Maynard tells WLWT.

“All of a sudden you heard this ‘Bam,’ and you knew they had shot the Gorilla, and you heard the other gorillas just go crazy,” Mary Freeman, a zoo visitor from Lexington, told WLWT.

Firefighters tell WLWT that the child “was in between the gorilla’s legs at the time of the kill-shot.” A tranquilizer shot was deemed “too dicey.”

Maynard explains to Cincinnati.com: “In an agitated situation, it may take quite a while for the tranquilizer to take effect. … At the instant he would be hit, he would have a dramatic response. You don’t hit him and he falls over.

Details on sad incident at Cincinnati Zoo today: https://t.co/s9bYFTef0H pic.twitter.com/7gBqmw9DR7

— Cincinnati Zoo (@CincinnatiZoo) May 28, 2016

The zoo says it will open as usual today – but the gorilla exhibit “will be closed until further notice.”

This isn’t the first time a child has fallen into a gorilla enclosure. But when a 3-year-old child fell into the den at Illinois’ Brookfield Zoo in 1996, the story had a very different ending. The female gorilla Binti Jua gently cradled the child and eventually carried him over to paramedics – and it was caught on camera. The boy, who was never identified, reportedly made a full recovery.

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Is Primary Rivalry Making The Democratic Party Stronger Like It Did In 2008?

Sen. Barack Obama, as Democratic presidential candidate, and former candidate Sen. Hillary Clinton appear together at a Women For Obama fundraiser New York, July, 2008.

Sen. Barack Obama, as Democratic presidential candidate, and former candidate Sen. Hillary Clinton appear together at a Women For Obama fundraiser New York, July, 2008. Timothy A. Clary/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption Timothy A. Clary/AFP/Getty Images

This election has brought a bitter primary season: candidates at each other’s throats; a Democratic Party in crisis. But it’s nothing new.

Eight years ago, the Democratic Party was recovering after a brutal primary between Sens. Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton.

Now, the party has found itself in a similar place.

This week on For the Record: Lessons learned from the 2008 Democratic primary, with two political operatives who lived through it.

Back then, Mo Elleithee and Bill Burton were each fighting for a potentially historic win in camps that got increasingly competitive.

Mo Elleithe, senior spokesman and traveling press secretary for Hillary Clinton’s 2008 campaign

“It was one of those things where on some level we are reveling together in that front row seat to history, but at the same time I just want to punch them on the nose,” Elleithee recalls.

Mo Elleithee, during a media briefing in November 2012.

Mo Elleithee, during a media briefing in November 2012. Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call / Getty hide caption

toggle caption Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call / Getty

That feeling intensified as the Democratic primary heated up. Elleithee says it wasn’t until the fall of 2007 that he saw Obama as a real threat.

“It was the Jefferson-Jackson dinner — I think it was the JJ dinner — in Iowa where Obama gave this speech that just blew everybody’s minds,” he says. “I was on the ground in Iowa for a while, and at that point I realized ‘Okay, this just got very, very real.’ “

It started to get heated on a personal level within the campaign too, says Bill Burton.

Bill Burton, national press secretary for Barack Obama’s 2008 campaign

“Campaigns — as much as they’re laboratories — they’re also very emotional events, or organizations rather. Very emotional organizations,” Burton says, “and so all the people who are involved feel so strongly, and follow the ups and the downs and every minor slight in a newspaper story that comes out.”

There was one moment in particular that made both Elleithee and Burton — and the rest of the Democratic Party — cringe a little.

“It was in a debate and Hillary Clinton said something about people liking her and the president in this awful, dismissive way was like, ‘Ah yeah you’re likable enough Hillary.’ “

It was the January 2008 debate in New Hampshire, when Clinton was asked by moderator Scott Spradling what she would say to voters who like her resume but are “hesitating on the likability issue,” in comparison to Obama:

Clinton: [Obama’s] very likable. I agree with that. I don’t think I’m that bad.”

Obama: “You’re likable enough, Hillary. No doubt about it.”

Clinton: “I appreciate that.”

“The campaign just could all feel it in our guts that it was it was a tough moment,” Burton recalls.

Deputy White House Press Secretary Bill Burton answers questions during the morning press briefing in Oak Bluffs School August 2009 in Oak Bluffs, Mass.

Deputy White House Press Secretary Bill Burton answers questions during the morning press briefing in Oak Bluffs School August 2009 in Oak Bluffs, Mass. Vincent DeWitt-Pool/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption Vincent DeWitt-Pool/Getty Images

Still, it was a moment that worked to the other side’s advantage.

“We heard it as part opportunity, part evidence of an aloofness that we were trying to drive about Barack Obama, and really as one of those moments that might actually galvanize a lot of women supporters,” Elleithee says.

The truth was that these two candidates didn’t have a whole lot of light between them on policy issues, so the big moments of differentiation came through personal attacks.

There were also real differences between the two campaigns themselves, which Mo Elleithee thinks about to this day.

“I don’t know that I’ve ever been as envious as I was of your team, Bill, he says. “He didn’t get a lot of the outward-facing backbiting, and back-stabbing, and leaking that plagued our campaign. You marry that with the fact that, I just thought a lot of us felt this way, that our message just didn’t match the time in the way that the Obama campaign’s message matched the time.”

Clinton’s campaign lacked a voter-focused message that Obama’s brought, Elleithee says.

“I believe that campaigns are inherently not about candidates, they are about the voter. And Barack Obama’s message of hope and change was focused on the voter, right, his famous line ‘we are the change we’ve been waiting for.’ “

Then, the campaigning winded down as Clinton announced her decision to drop out a few days after last contest, and Obama got enough delegates to formally win the nomination.

“In the final days, the foot came off the gas pedal a little bit in terms of aggressiveness, and we were all just dead tired,” Bill Burton says.

Today, Mo Elleithee gets reflective about those final days, he says, drawing parallels with the current dynamic between Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton.

“I listen to the Sanders campaign deliver a rationale for staying in the race and I smile because I was the guy on the back of the plane making that exact argument to reporters about why we were staying in the race,” he says. “Because we were winning at the end. Mathematically we had already been eliminated though. … It’s easy when people are still turning out and voting for you, and you’re still filling huge auditoriums, and you still have a lot of very passionate supporters. it’s easy to want to keep the fight going.”

Clinton did keep the fight going until June 7, when she conceded the race.

Later that summer, at the Democratic convention in Denver, Clinton took to the convention floor.

Mo Elathee and Bill Burton were both at the convention, too.

“I’ll never forget, there was a button that was for sale at one of the stands around the convention center that was our logo with theirs. And it was, “A Hillary supporter for Obama,” and so I bought it and I put it on and I’ll never forget being on the escalator, on my way down as Bill was on the escalator passing me on the way up, and I hadn’t seen you in forever and the first words out of your mouth were, ‘Nice pin,’ and kept going,” Elleithee laughs.

“I would’ve given you a hug if I weren’t on the opposite side,” Burton replies.

Of course, the question now is whether or not the Democratic Party will be able to hug and make up after the bruising primary of 2016.

Because Bill Burton says it’s fundamentally different than eight years ago.

“Bernie Sanders is running against the establishment in a way where he feels wronged, he feels like this is a process that has made it impossible for him to win, and he’s doing a lot of things that aren’t just making his case, but trying to burn the whole party down,” Burton says. “And you know what I think there’s a fair argument to be made that the process doesn’t include enough voices, and it’s not one that feels totally Democratic when you look at how caucuses are conducted and how delegates are awarded and why do superdelegates exist — things like that. But, at the same time, he is not doing things that are going to make it easier for us to win in November.”

Mo Elleithee says in 2008, the intense rivalry put the Democrats in a better position for the general election against the GOP nominee, Sen. John McCain.

“As hot as it got at times we made each other better, we made the party stronger, we organized in all 50 states, and what’s interesting is that the popularity ratings of both candidates actually grew within the Democratic Party,” Elleithee says. “People liked both candidates more by the end than they did coming in, that’s pretty remarkable. I don’t know that that’s happening this time.”

We put that question to Slate political correspondent Jamelle Bouie: Is this current primary battle making the Democratic party stronger?

“I think if that were the case in this election, if this were ending with Sanders and Clinton with high ratings, the Democratic party leaders would not be as worried as they are right now. Unfortunately for them this campaign has sort of resulted in Hillary Clinton’s stark decline in terms of her favorability numbers. And I think it has to do with a really critical difference between now and then, which is that then, for all of their political combat, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama were very ideologically similar candidates. Sanders does come from a different wing of the Democratic Party and he has made his campaign about that ideological choice. Sanders won’t just have to endorse a competitor, if he endorses, he’ll essentially have to say, this person whose beliefs I’ve been railing about for the past six months is in fact OK.”

When it comes down to it, Bouie says Sanders understands his best bet for advancing his cause is a Clinton presidency, and would follow through with an endorsement for Clinton.

“How full-throated that is, is a different question,” he says.

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Libertarian Party Set To Pick Its Presidential Candidate

Delegates listen to speeches in the main hall at the National Libertarian Party Convention, Friday, May 27, 2016, in Orlando, Fla.

Delegates listen to speeches in the main hall at the National Libertarian Party Convention, Friday, May 27, 2016, in Orlando, Fla. John Raoux/AP hide caption

toggle caption John Raoux/AP

More than 1,000 Libertarians from around the country have converged on a hotel in Orlando, Fla., for a long weekend of politicking, strategizing, and seminars with titles like “How to Abolish Government in Three Easy Steps.”

They’ll also choose their nominee for president on Sunday. Five men are competing to be the Libertarian standard-bearer, including a software tycoon, a magazine editor, and the former Republican governor of New Mexico.

“Libertarian conventions are always exciting,” says Carla Howell, the party’s political director. “But the excitement this weekend is beyond anything I’ve ever seen, by far.”

Howell thinks that’s partly because more Americans are coming around to the party’s long-held agenda, which includes legalizing marijuana, curbing government surveillance, and limiting U.S. military involvement in the Middle East.

“There is no question to those of us who do retail politics, who talk to voters, they want what Libertarians have been advocating for a long time,” Howell says.

Libertarians acknowledge there’s another reason their party’s getting a closer look: deep dissatisfaction with the likely Republican and Democratic nominees. A Wall Street Journal/NBC poll found 47 percent of Americans are willing to consider a third-party candidate this year.

Denise Cranford understands that. The Ackerman, Miss., delegate has been active in Libertarian politics for years, but this is the first time she’s attended the national convention.

“Trump is disgustingly crude. Hillary, please. Don’t make me go there,” Cranford says. “Even if I wanted to go Republican, their belief in, ‘I want to take over and tell you what to do.’ Democrats want to take over and take my money. It’s got to stop.”

There’s a lively competition for the top spot on the Libertarian ticket. The five finalists spent more than two hours Saturday night debating their plans to roll back government in blunt and often colorful terms.

Some of the liveliest exchanges were between Austin Petersen, editor of The Libertarian Republic magazine, and former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson. Petersen tended to take more purist positions, while Johnson’s views were often tempered with a dose of governing practicality.

On same-sex marriage, for example, Petersen advocated what he called “total separation of marriage and state.”

Johnson said he felt the same way at first, but there were complications.

“It turns out that there are hundreds if not thousands of laws that actually contain the word marriage that would have to be amended,” Johnson said. So he endorsed government recognition of same-sex marriage instead.

Some of the biggest applause lines last night belonged to neither Johnson nor Petersen but to anesthesiologist Marc Feldman.

“I don’t need any kind of marriage license,” Feldman said. “I don’t need a marijuana grower’s permit. I have a Constitution. What I need is a government that honors it and doesn’t ask for licenses or permits and certificates for things that are none of the government’s business.”

Anti-virus software pioneer John McAfee and publisher and podcaster Darryl Perry are also vying for the Libertarian nomination.

Unlike the major party conventions later this summer where the nominees will likely be known well in advance, there’s no telling who will come out on top of Sunday’s Libertarian vote.

Mississippi delegate Denise Cranford isn’t worried, though. She’ll be happy with whoever is chosen.

“If we could just put one in the presidency and the rest of them in Cabinets we’d be awesome,” Cranford says. “I’d love to see all those positions filled by Libertarians who want to take over the government and leave you alone.”

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