We learned yesterday from patent trial evidence that Samsung was worried about running ads that directly attacked Apple, wanting Google to do it for them. We now know that it was the death of Steve Jobs which prompted Samsung’s change of mind, running the Next Big Thing ads which directly mocked Apple customers.

An email trail shows that Samsung America’s VP of U.S. sales Mike Pennington cynically described the death of Jobs as “the best opportunity” to run the campaign, as consumers might be worried about Apple’s future product innovations following the death of its famous co-founder.

Sorry to continue to push this issue, but I have seen this far too long and I know this is our best opportunity to attack iPhone …

Chief marketing officer Todd Pendleton replied, giving the go-ahead:

Hey Michael, We are going to execute what you are recommending in our holiday [Galaxy S2] campaign and go head to head with iPhone 4S.

The Wall Street Journal posted the complete trail as a PDF.

It was earlier revealed that Apple’s senior VP of marketing Phil Schiller was so concerned about these ads that he emailed Tim Cook to suggest a change of ad agency to fight back. That didn’t happen, though Apple is currently planning to expand its line-up of digital agencies.