NSA Now Pissing Off the Entire World
Most recently, the offended party is Germany. Chancellor Angela Merkel’s phone has been tapped from the rooftop of the nearby American embassy in Berlin. But it’s gone beyond that: a double agent working in Germany’s intelligence service, the BND, was just caught providing the CIA papers on the German parliament’s investigation of NSA mass surveillance in their country. Germany, as America’s strongest ally in Europe, is also America’s largest listening post on the Continent. And America is Gemany’s largest trading partner outside of Europe. But even the patience of Angela Merkel’s pro-America center-right government has its limits.
Germany asks top US intelligence official to leave country over spy row by Philip Oltermann and Spencer Ackerman, 10 July 2014 [brief excerpt]
“Diplomatic relations between Germany and the US plunged to a new low after Angela Merkel’s government asked the [CIA station chief] in Germany to leave the country.
While not formally amounting to a full expulsion, the move nonetheless sends a dramatic signal: after a year-long dispute triggered by the revelations of NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, Merkel seems to have finally run out of patience with Washington’s failure to explain itself…
According to German media reports, such drastic action had previously only been thinkable when dealing with ‘pariah states like North Korea or Iran’…”
Europe Treated Like Enemy of the U.S.
The abuse of trust driving between America and her traditional European allies due to over-reach in the spying efforts of the NSA and CIA has been repeated and ongoing. The excesses of the NSA have gone so far beyond the pale that relations between America and Europe are steadily moving toward a breaking point.
EU confronts Washington over reports it spies on European allies by Ben Deighton and Annika Breidthardt, June 30, 2013 [excerpt]
“A spokeswoman for the European Commission said on Sunday the EU contacted U.S. authorities in Washington and Brussels about a report in Der Spiegel magazine that the U.S. secret service had tapped EU offices in Washington and Brussels and at the United Nations…
‘If the media reports are correct, this brings to memory actions among enemies during the Cold War. It goes beyond any imagination that our friends in the United States view the Europeans as enemies,’ said German Justice Minister Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger.
‘If it is true that EU representations in Brussels and Washington were indeed tapped by the American secret service, it can hardly be explained with the argument of fighting terrorism,’ she said in a statement…
‘We cannot negotiate over [the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership free trade agreement] if there is the slightest doubt that our partners are carrying out spying activities on the offices of our negotiators,’ [European commissioner for justice and fundamental rights Viviane Reding] said in comments passed on to reporters by her spokeswoman.
The European Parliament’s foreign affairs committee head Elmar Brok, from Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats, echoed those views…
‘How should we still negotiate if we must fear that our negotiating position is being listened to beforehand?’"
NSA Spying Makes Working With America Difficult…or Impossible
Friends Spying on Friends – The View From Europe by Allan Topol, 11/5/2013 [excerpt]
“The documents released by Edward Snowden, the former contractor, reveal how widespread the spying was by the U.S. National Security Agency. Angela Merkel’s cell phone was only the tip of the iceberg. The phone calls of up to 35 world leaders were monitored by Washington’s secret agencies. The French media reported that NSA monitored more than 70 million phone records and text messages in France in one month alone. According to Spanish newspapers, NSA tapped more than 60 million phone calls in Spain.
…At a Brussels summit, Merkel and French President François Hollande had a private meeting to craft a joint position on the issue. Spanish authorities summoned the American ambassador and criticized the United States for conduct that was improper and unacceptable…
The damage caused by this spying is hard to overestimate. Unfortunately, there will be much greater fallout than mere embarrassment for Washington… It is likely that outrage in Europe will derail negotiation of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment pact, one of President Obama’s key trade initiatives. Moreover, it will impede efforts by Washington to persuade Germany and other EU states to assume greater responsibility in assuring world security. The American-European alliance has become fragile according to Le Monde…”
The Good News: Europe Fighting Back With a Workaround
So far, revelations of the NSA’s out-of-control spying violations have all led to good outcomes for the world’s citizens. Besides temporarily tabling the EU-USA free trade agreement, the fall-out from surveillance overkill by the NSA has, among other things, led to the following:
Brazil-EU pact to set up direct contact cable ‘rebuff to US’ by Homa Lezgee, February 26, 2014 [excerpt]
“The recent agreement by Brazil and the European Union (EU) to set up a direct undersea communications cable to shield their electronic data from US spying is an act of ‘rebuff’ to the United States, an analyst tells Press TV.
On February 24, Brazil and the EU agreed to set up the cable from Lisbon, the capital of Portugal, to Fortaleza, a city in Brazil, bypassing US cables that have been being used to carry Brazil’s communications to the EU and vice versa.
The agreement came following leaks that the US has been intercepting the communications of top officials in Brazil and the EU, particularly those of Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff as well as German Chancellor Angela Merkel…”