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More Details Emerge On How the US Is Bugging Its European Allies

timothy posted 1 year,22 days | from the bugging-is-the-polite-word dept.

United States 442

dryriver writes with this excerpt from the Guardian: "U.S. intelligence services are spying on the European Union mission in New York and its embassy in Washington, according to the latest top secret U.S. National Security Agency documents leaked by the whistleblower Edward Snowden. One document lists 38 embassies and missions, describing them as 'targets.' It details an extraordinary range of spying methods used against each target, from bugs implanted in electronic communications gear to taps into cables to the collection of transmissions with specialised antennae. Along with traditional ideological adversaries and sensitive Middle Eastern countries, the list of targets includes the E.U. missions and the French, Italian and Greek embassies, as well as a number of other American allies, including Japan, Mexico, South Korea, India and Turkey. ... One of the bugging methods mentioned is codenamed Dropmire, which, according to a 2007 document, is 'implanted on the Cryptofax at the E.U. embassy, DC' – an apparent reference to a bug placed in a commercially available encrypted fax machine used at the mission. The NSA documents note the machine is used to send cables back to foreign affairs ministries in European capitals."

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442 comments

No Shit (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152469)

No shit we're bugging embassies. They do the same things. Their governments are irresponsible if they aren't doing the same things to ours. This is just politicians pandering to the ignorant. Oh by the way, this doesn't support the Snowden "White Knight" image.

Re:No Shit (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152515)

There is a difference between doing intelligence work and outright bugging and performing illegal surveillance.

You clearly don't know what that difference is and I feel sorry for you.

Re:No Shit (5, Insightful)

DaveV1.0 (203135) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152537)

Someone doesn't realize that embassies are foreign soil. You clearly are assuming that what they are doing is illegal and not sanctioned under national security. See, you are just making an ass out of yourself and YOU KNOW IT or you wouldn't be posting as an anonymous coward.

Re:No Shit (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152605)

It's only illegal if there are consequences for it, and if some authority can punish you for it.

Since the USA is the richest, mightiest, most powerful nation in the world, "legalities" are just a concept. There is a reason we are the only superpower on the planet. We can do whatever the fuck we want to you and you will take from us willingly.

Re:No Shit (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152685)

So you think that there aren't going to be any consequences for this? Fool.

With great power comes great responsibility, but you sound more like the local schoolyard bully - and that's exactly how the US has been coming across for years. Looks like the rest of the world finally figured out who they are dealing with.

Re:No Shit (1)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152781)

Spiderman only has pretty good power. Hulk and Thor have great power.

Re: No Shit (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152803)

Well the US. Got Two skyscrapers torn down because of their illegal activities around the world. You can say that US also took its revenge after, but that does not give the life back to the thousand of civilian killed because of the US foreign policy. As you can see their very few terroristic attacks to Russia or china.

Re: No Shit (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152947)

Actually the stated reason for 9/11 was U.S. bases in Saudi Arabia which were there at the request of the ruling government.

So how about a nice tall glass of shut-the-fuck-up.

Re: No Shit (2, Insightful)

hedwards (940851) | 1 year,21 days | (#44153015)

But it's more fun to bash the US for everything that happens, because obviously, the US is always wrong and everybody else is always right.

Re:No Shit (4, Insightful)

AJH16 (940784) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152989)

It's only illegal if it is against the law... You do realize that espionage is ALWAYS illegal in the country being spied on right? That doesn't make it illegal in the country doing the spying. It makes it a valid portion of the government's job. Spying has been a part of international relations since, well, when did people first make countries again? It isn't illegal and it isn't going to change any time soon. It's certainly not good for relations when it gets exposed, but everyone really is doing it. If you think that this is A) news or B) a valid leak that has any possible purpose than to hurt the US, then you are sadly ignorant of the realities of the intelligence community for the last forever.

Re:No Shit (-1, Flamebait)

Cwix (1671282) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152643)

Actually, the only one here making an ass out of themselves is you, The sad part is apparently you don't know it.

Re:No Shit (2)

xstonedogx (814876) | 1 year,21 days | (#44153061)

As someone who posts as AC on a regular basis out of laziness, I can safely say I'm just as willing to make a fool of myself with my pseudonym as I am as an AC. Your argument is flawed.

Re:No Shit (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152569)

Most intelligence work is illegal by definition. The only question is whether the work is whether the US intelligence work breaks US laws. I envy your fairy tale worldview, but in the real world things work differently.

Re: No Shit (2)

sabbede (2678435) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152663)

Well, intelligence gathering activities tend to violate the laws of the nation it is gathered from, not the nation doing the gathering. But that's not exactly a shock. Nations are nosy neighbors. There's more spying and gossiping then a meeting of a neighborhood book group. It's something that may outrage the people of the nations involved, but the governments expect it. Israel, an American semi-dependant state, spies on their closest friend and ally all the time. And, vice versa. It's like masturbating in front of the homeless - everyone does it, but it's embarassing to get caught.

Re: No Shit (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152745)

Why is it embarrassing? Are you ashamed of the human body? I don't get it.

Re: No Shit (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44153023)

He's homeless.

Re: No Shit (2)

hedwards (940851) | 1 year,21 days | (#44153035)

Masturbating in front of the homeless? I have never done that nor have I seen anybody do so. In fact, doing that would lead one to be registered as a sex offender.

Re:No Shit (1)

Shavano (2541114) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152815)

US law doesn't apply in the EU embassy.

Re:No Shit (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152857)

EU doesn't have an embassy, it has a delegation. Only countries have embassies.

Re:No Shit (1)

Shavano (2541114) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152795)

There is, but every government does both kinds.

Re:No Shit (4, Insightful)

pe1rxq (141710) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152529)

It also doesn't support the 'Snowden is evil' image either. Afterall he is only reporting what any 'responsible' government already knew and did......

Re:No Shit (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152599)

It also doesn't support the 'Snowden is evil' image either.

I disagree, that's exactly what it does. It's evil because it gives an entirely one sided view of the situation -- where are your European leakers? Your Asian leakers? Your Russian leakers? Or are you daft enough to think that Great Britain, Germany, China, Russia, etc are not engaging in espionage? Furthermore, I now support the charges of espionage claimed by the US. If you're involved in espionage against some country -- ally or foe -- and someone leaks that information worldwide, they too are now engaged in espionage.

Afterall he is only reporting what any 'responsible' government already knew and did......

Incredibly false. What he did was leak a bunch of documents in a very irresponsible manner. He could have chose to quit his job and go on to tell the American people they were being spied upon. That's been done at least three times before [eff.org] . But instead what he did was take a bunch of classified documents and release them to the press without any redactions -- and some international presses too. Why didn't he sit down and carefully consider all the information and just pare it down to only the details that Americans were being spied upon by their government? That's why he's legally screwed right now and will likely never be able to return to the United States and be jailed for life if he does.

Re:No Shit (1)

RivenAleem (1590553) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152641)

Why would he want to return to the US?

Re:No Shit (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152711)

Why would he want to return to the US?

Heroes don't run when they know they're 100% right.

Re:No DIEBOLD t (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152859)

yes, but if someone tries to knife Snowdon, and an undercover NSA agent deters the knifeman, wtf would Snowdon be expected to do? run for the presidency!

Re:No Shit (0)

larry bagina (561269) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152897)

Cowards post anonymously when they know they're 100% wrong.

Re:No Shit (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152951)

I agree...'nuff said.

Re:No Shit (4, Insightful)

ebno-10db (1459097) | 1 year,21 days | (#44153025)

Heroes don't run when they know they're 100% right.

Spoken like a true armchair hero. More importantly, this isn't about Snowden as a superhero. Look, it's a bird, it's a plane, no it's Super Snowden! In fact this isn't about Snowden at all, but about what he's released. Trying to turn this into a debate about Snowden is a person as a ridiculous distraction.

Re:No Shit (3, Insightful)

hedwards (940851) | 1 year,21 days | (#44153055)

Not really, that's a construct that you probably picked up from Hollywood propaganda.

The truth is that things are rarely if ever that clear cut. Heroes in things like this tend to try to avoid being sent to prison as being in prison makes it easy for the government to stop them from making a scene. Whereas a very visible fight to get Snowden extradited back to the US has brought a ton of extra attention to the problem that he highlighted with the leak.

Re:No Shit (3, Insightful)

lxs (131946) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152689)

For one thing, other courties don't have 5 million people cleared to handle top secret material. That makes the chances of a leak smaller. For another, related, thing, those countries don't have a security apparatus as creepily and absurdly extensive as the US does, so the few involved don't feel a strong need to leak.

Also, other countries see this as a human rights issue that involves everybody instead of something that only becomes an issue when it affects their own citizens.

Re:No Shit (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152531)

That doesn't excuse it.

The business I conduct in my country in the EU is of zero import to the US.

Re:No Shit (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152601)

What, you want an apology? If your country isn't doing the same the US, it is probably only due to the difference in technical capabilities.

Re:No Shit (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152703)

You sound like that NSA shill on the radio here this morning trying to justify invading my privacy.

Re:No Shit (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152809)

Cool, I always wanted to be on the radio.

Seriously, people complain that the UN has too much power (which in fact has very little power) and that [insert your home country] should never submit itself to an outside authority. You want nation states to follow imaginary rules, you have to create a set of rules for nation states to follow. Otherwise you are spending your life complaining that people aren't nice. Sorry, not everyone is nice.

Re:No Shit (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152751)

True ... if we are no ally.

Re:No Shit (4, Interesting)

Black Parrot (19622) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152691)

That doesn't excuse it.

The business I conduct in my country in the EU is of zero import to the US.

I suspect that True Patriots interpret "national security" to include economic hegemony.

Re:No Shit (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152551)

"WE" are bugging embassies ?
Why are you including yourself in this ?
This is slashdot.org here not www.nsa.gov

Re:No Shit (2)

lxs (131946) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152769)

Achievement unlocked: you've unmasked your first NSA plant.

Re:No Shit (5, Funny)

Chris Mattern (191822) | 1 year,21 days | (#44153005)

Achievement unlocked: you've unmasked your first NSA plant.

It was a rhododendron, as I recall.

Re:No Shit (1)

auric_dude (610172) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152563)

I wonder why those who advise upon security matters allowed the purchase of such kit? Things have changed a bit of late, witness the fuss about Chinese companies and associated hardware http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-19988919 [bbc.co.uk] , anti trade, xenophobia or real security worries?

Re:No Shit (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152585)

They do the same things.

Oh, really? Everybody's doing that? Well, perhaps the USSR did, but do you honestly believe that close Western allies of the US are systematically bugging US embassies and spying on US politicians on a massive scale?

You know, if somebody found out that the US bugged one fax machine of their European allies, you'd be right - it would be swept under the carpet and handled through diplomatic channels. But we're talking about absolutely massive, persistent spying on close allies.

I can understand if the US spies on China and vice versa, and many of the discoveries in this areas is handled via side channels (e.g. swaping intelligence agence), but it's hard to understand why the US needs to massively spy on European administration to obtain more information about the latest regulation for the shapes of bananas or how much earth may be on potatoes.

Re:No Shit (4, Insightful)

SirGarlon (845873) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152681)

do you honestly believe that close Western allies of the US are systematically bugging US embassies and spying on US politicians on a massive scale?

Yes, as a matter of fact, I do.

That's beside the point though, because I also believe two wrongs don't make a right. I wish my government still felt that way, too.

Whether the US should take the moral high road or dive into the muck like "just another country" is a debate that goes back to the founding of the Republic. It looks like it's finally been settled. :-(

Re:No Shit (2)

ebno-10db (1459097) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152977)

Whether the US should take the moral high road or dive into the muck like "just another country" is a debate that goes back to the founding of the Republic. It looks like it's finally been settled. :-(

You're kidding, right? I have a big problem w/ the US invading countries under false pretenses and for utterly indefensible reasons. This spying on allies stuff just means we aren't boy scouts. I'm going to be outraged at least until my next cup of coffee.

Re:No Shit (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152983)

Whether the US should take the moral high road or dive into the muck like "just another country" is a debate that goes back to the founding of the Republic. It looks like it's finally been settled. :-(

The US is still here. That means they did what was needed to survive. If you don't understand that, you are not qualified to be in charge of anything.

Re:No Shit (2)

ebno-10db (1459097) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152709)

do you honestly believe that close Western allies of the US are systematically bugging US embassies and spying on US politicians on a massive scale

I don't know if they're doing it systematically because there haven't been any European Snowdens lately. It certainly wouldn't shock me if it was true. There have been plenty of cases of allies bugging each other, including for business and commercial reasons.

Re:No Shit (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152765)

British Intelligence weger ahead of the game and just outsourced it to the russians in the 50's and 60's

Re:No Shit (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152787)

Because it gives them an economic advantage.

Yes. Really. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152811)

See:

GB
Israel
Germany
Russia
China ...

It's what intelligence agencies do. It's what they were intended to do.

The issue is that the U.S. intelligence agency charged with spying on the rest of the world has turned against its masters. The NSA and CIA are supposed to spy on foreign governments/nationals. Now we have proof that they regularly spy on the entirety of the U.S. population without cause, warrant, oversight, or any other kind of restriction. This is a situation that has been suspected for decades, but now we have proof! Yet, it doesn't seem like anything is going to change. Already, attention has been turned away from the critical matter and now the focus is on a whistle blower witch hunt and a whole lot of hand waving.

'Pay no attention top the man behind the curtain. Look over there. Boogeymen! Cower! Fear! Let us protect you by stripping your privacy and rights.'

Re:No Shit (5, Insightful)

lxs (131946) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152835)

but it's hard to understand why the US needs to massively spy on European administration to obtain more information about the latest regulation for the shapes of bananas or how much earth may be on potatoes.

Funny you should mention food regulation. The US has a huge problem with EU regulation of food. GMO foods have to be clearly labelled and most if not all US beef is banned within the EU because over here treating cattle with growth hormone is a serious crime and the resulting meat is not tolerated to enter the food chain, but this is standard practice in the US. There are huge economic interests involved and as Cablegate has shown, the US government is directly involved in putting pressure on EU states to further those interests. Knowing the thoughts of EU negotiators would give an unfair advantage.

Re:No Shit (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152905)

AC has revealed himself to be, none other than my fellow illustrious Hoosier, Dan mother fuckin' Quayle!

Re:No Shit (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152607)

The same thing can be said for nuclear weapons, but I don't see you encouraging everyone to get them?

Re:No Shit (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152719)

but you broke the first commandment. THOU shalt NOT get CAUGHT

Word of warning netizens... (3, Interesting)

Pav (4298) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152729)

...there is a possibility that Snowden may be a "false flag" to discredit leakers. I'm not saying he is or isn't, but Naomi Wolf [naomiwolf.org] says it better than me - she's a writer and journalist with a proven record on whistleblower and civil rights issues... WELL worth looking up for End of America [youtube.com] alone).

Snowden may very well be the real deal... but it's just worth thinking a step ahead and not balancing the foundations on him or any one person. These issues are much bigger than any single entity anyway... the problems are systemic. We need to act, and act positively despite the potential for political tricks.

WITH ALLIES LIKE THAT !! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152495)

Who needs, uh, Look !! The US is not your ally !! It is your savior !! That goes double for you, France !!

Which side is GCHQ on? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152527)

We know countries spy on each other for political capital and leverage, even allies. They embarrass leaders they don't like with smears and leaks. The give opposition leaders they do like, intel and tips. Trying to influence elections, trying to learn trade secret that aid their corps.

It's a nasty game, but it's a known game.

So WTF is GCHQ doing, giving NSA a tap on 300 lines into Britain, which almost certainly contains information on British people, companies and politics?

Which side are you on there in GCHQ?

1 BILLION telephone calls per DAY (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152833)

http://boingboing.net/2013/07/01/glenn-greenwald-gives-a-public.html

Glenn says they have a document from the NSA. They're now can record 1 billion cell phone calls per day.

You cannot elect a President if General Alexander can go through the candidates and pick out any that he doesn't like and leak their phone calls. You cannot have a democracy in that world.

We cannot elect a Prime Minister if General Alexander can leak his phone calls and monitor his communications. General Alexander will be able to pick and choose our elected officials by selectively smearing.

You cannot have a democracy in that world.

GCHQ, you have a job, and part of that job is to protect Brits from foreign powers spying on them.

Enemies of the state (4, Insightful)

BSAtHome (455370) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152557)

So how does this relate to "war on terrorism"? This is plain and simple espionage, most probably for economic gain.

Re:Enemies of the state (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152667)

Didn't this used to be considered an "act of war?" From Wikipedia under Acts of War / Casus belli

...casus foederis refers to offenses or threats to a fellow allied nation with which the justifying nation is engaged in a mutual defense treaty, such as NATO.

Re:Enemies of the state (1, Funny)

auric_dude (610172) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152679)

Economic gain, can in theory and after payment of taxes be used to finance the war on terror. A rather tenuous link but you may well be able to advertise and trumpet the magnitude of any Pork barrel heading towards your favoured state or district.

Re:Enemies of the state (1)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152817)

Not such a stretched argument, either. These are the same people who took the Constitution's commerce clause, designed to give Congress power to smooth interstate trade, and turned it into a rationalizer for all kinds of power Congress was specifically denied. Any Rube Goldberg-style argument is acceptable.

Some arguments have about as much influence as a fifth differential.

Re:Enemies of the state (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152697)

This is plain and simple espionage, most probably for economic gain.

Yes.

It's the perfect training ground for the NSA. Embassies are considered foreign territory so no pesky constitution and warrants are required, yet they are conveniently located in the U.S.A.

Sealed Diplomatic baggage, but everything else ... (1)

Aguazul2 (2591049) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152829)

There is obviously some expectation of privacy in diplomacy, e.g. Diplomatic baggage is still treated as sealed. But obviously the US considers everything else to be completely fair game, including crypto-protected messaging. Hardly seems like playing according to the spirit of the rules. So, yes, it is plain and simple espionage against allies. This is surely not going down well in Europe.

Mud in the water (5, Interesting)

RabidReindeer (2625839) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152559)

"Friends spying on friends" is not something new and unusual, despite what at least 1 German politician implied. The US has arrested Israeli spies in decades past. Israel has arrested US spies. It may be deplorable, but it's universal. Raising a ruckus about it is just a sideshow.

Snowden apparently originally thought that this was part of his job and was OK with it. What allegedly turned him was when he realized that a lot of what he was doing was unrelated to spying on other nations, other nationals and terrorists, but was spying on US citizens even when there was absolutely no reason to think they were doing anything worth spying on.

Re:Mud in the water (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152657)

Where is the "Bugspray Reciprocity" comment?

Re:Mud in the water (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152793)

oh, the mackintosh people must have deleted it because it mentioned FOXCOMM wiring up the Capitol Building,
not the friggin foxconn fone factory you paranoid gits. /. mods/editors, epic PHAIL

Re:Mud in the water (1)

auric_dude (610172) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152707)

Friends with benefits it is not!

Re:Mud in the water (1)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152825)

What are "friends with benefits"? Friends fucking each other. QED

Re:Mud in the water (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152885)

"Friends spying on friends" is not something new and unusual, despite what at least 1 German politician implied.

It is very new when done on this scale. Effectively, the USA has made undeclared war on it's allies by breaking the law of those allies wholesale. And they wonder why they make enemies wholesale.

 

Re:Mud in the water (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152899)

Raising a ruckus about it is just a sideshow.

Nah. The EU wants to raise a ruckus to make hay in future negotiations with the US, just like the US would do the same if it caught German corporate espionage or whatever. Then again, you might consider treaty negotiations a sideshow, but I'd point out that furthering copyright terms and pushing for more lenient terms for extradition are well within the scope of treaties. To that end, in the long term, I'd say it's more than a sideshow.

Regardless... (1)

sycodon (149926) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152919)

...of where you fall in the political spectrum, I think that everyone can agree that, as of late, the Administration has been exceptionally sloppy, amateurish, and far too invasive (due to sheer laziness).

So in other words (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152573)

Everything the US has been accusing China of doing like sticking backdoors in communications equipment, the US has been doing it it's allies?

So much for don't buy Chinese, sounds like it's more risky to buy US equipment because at least there's now some hard evidence that US equipment contains backdoors, with China it was all just unproven speculation.

Who cares (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152575)

Those countries are probably spying on us as well. And our government has a responsibility to know what other governments are doing, to the best of our abilities.

That said, it shows how much damage Snowden has done to publicly reveal this undoubtedly top secret information. He's a traitor.

Re:Who cares (4, Informative)

ebno-10db (1459097) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152855)

Quoting the PP in full because I hate moderators turning into political censors. -1 is for trolls and flamebait, not posters whose opinions you disagree with. FWIW I completely disagree w/ the PP, but their comment is a legitimate part of this debate.

Those countries are probably spying on us as well. And our government has a responsibility to know what other governments are doing, to the best of our abilities.

That said, it shows how much damage Snowden has done to publicly reveal this undoubtedly top secret information. He's a traitor.

P.S. The ultimate irony is if this comment gets modded down from its original +2, but it wouldn't be the first time a comment like this has been. Not only do some mods like to act as political censors, they don't like being called on it.

Cold War II? (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152579)

Nice to know what your friends really think of you. Smiling and shaking hands for the press while someone from one of the 3 letter agencies places a bug in your bag or jacket. Sickening hypocrisy!

Bugspray Reciprocity (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152597)

Much of the to-fro about reciprocal spying to get around the rule that the cia cannot spy on americans is very misleading.
At the end of the day, the most of the justification fors these violations of privacy is the "terror"spiel.
Perhaps the French Peoples privacy is sold-out to MI6 and vice-versa, but the wild-card-data-elephant in this blogroom is the israelis.

the EU building is full of multinational-traitors to their own country who see all people within Schengen as the same (ribbit!).
The funny thing is, the Germans have an innate distaste for froggies-legs!

The EU building (in Brussels) which had its telephony and inter/intranet compromised is similar (somehow) to the wiring-up of the Capitol Building in washington dc. The private, for-profit company that won the tender to wire up the Capitol Building was named "Foxcomm". Hmmmm, that sounds familiar, something to do with the Red Chinese......?

Smart guy (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152621)

Keeps releasing his shit bit by bit and let's the NSA accumulate lies to the public all the time.

I bet the final release will be recordings of American politicians - both parties, both Houses, entire administration - the NSA has made.
Gonna be fun watching them trying to weasel-word their way out of that.

ROFL (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152651)

This is like a newspaper cartoon series with the artist getting better each week.

You Americans are sooooooo screwed. And it was about time too. Perhaps you'll learn to pay attention when you vote now. There are more than two choices you know.

Re:ROFL (0)

ebno-10db (1459097) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152879)

You Americans are sooooooo screwed.

Why, because we're going to have to listen to the faux outrage from your politicians?

P.S. If you're going to use phrases like "you Americans", it would be reasonable to say what country you're from.

Hypocrisy (1)

margeas (2961639) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152653)

This just confirm how much hypocrisy reign in all USA propaganda pumped foreign policies and explain why NATO is still up and running after 60 years: European people rightly demand to quit NATO, unfortunately invertebrate European governors aren't still prepared to give up this sort of economic/power trading deal. They get what they deserve now.I only hope there's more material to expose how European countries and their trusted Allied (aka Big Brother) work out their businesses.

Pot meet Kettle (3, Interesting)

Lawrence_Bird (67278) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152655)

I think we can all distinguish between spying on one's own citizens and spying on foreigners, in particular in foreign lands. That of course includes governments. Normally this kind of stuff stays under the radar, but this is not the first time it has happened. Israel has been caught quite a few times spying on the US and running agents to further their own national interests. France has a long history of doing corporate espionage on behalf of their own industries. The Brits have always had their fingers in everything.

Spying isn't just about military stuff. It is often about economics and politics and knowing what others are planning and doing (vs what they might say publicly).

OMG! Countries spy on each other?! (3, Funny)

Andover Chick (1859494) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152661)

I just cannot believe it! Countries around the world spy on each other?? What a remarkable revelation, who would'a thought?. Perhaps next we'll find out that corporations act in their greedy self interest or that middle school girls are catty. Thank you Edward Snowden for making the f*ing obvious even more obvious!

When congress and CEOs find they've been bugged... (2)

gestalt_n_pepper (991155) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152743)

The resulting outrage will be highly amusing. Even more so when other agencies like the CIA find *they're* being monitored.

Re:When congress and CEOs find they've been bugged (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152841)

I think this puts it into perspective. Still do not think it is right. Just shows how long they have been doing this.

http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2013/06/how-a-30-year-old-lawyer-exposed-nsa-mass-surveillance-of-americans-in-1975/

tl;dr version ... going on since at least 1950. Under different program names. All 'just ended recently'.

This has been going on a LONG time. 9/11 was just an excuse to make it legal and retroactive immunity in 2008. Some companies saw it as their duty to help the NSA. Others lawyered up. Others had a 'yeah the other guys do it too' attitude.

I doubt they will be all that outraged. They singed it into law letting them do it.

Re:When congress and CEOs find they've been bugged (5, Informative)

Black Parrot (19622) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152887)

I doubt they will be all that outraged. They singed it into law letting them do it.

from http://crooksandliars.com/nicole-belle/jesselyn-radack-points-out-problem-fi [crooksandliars.com] -

STEPHANOPOULOS: But these surveillance programs, as the president has pointed out, were passed by the Congress, are overseen by a court.

RADACK: Well, both of those are incorrect. Congress has not been fully informed. Only the--

STEPHANOPOULOS: They passed the laws, there is oversight, or there is (inaudible).

RADACK: OK, but there is a secret interpretation of Section 215 of the Patriot Act, which nobody knows, except for the Intel Committee of Congress, and even they say that they think most Americans would be appalled by that. And to say that it’s been approved by the courts is a misnomer, because it gives the impression that federal courts have approved this, when in reality, it’s the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, which has rubber-stamped every single--

STEPHANOPOULOS: Which is a federal court.

RADACK: No, it is a secret court set up at the Justice Department that has federal judges on it. But last year, it approved 2,000 out of 2,000 applications. They hear only the government’s side, and they have never -- they have rejected an application one time since 1978.

Why all the AC's? (1)

cbope (130292) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152807)

It's pretty informative to see all the AC posts in this thread... what is everyone afraid of?!?

Oh, wait... the NSA is watching and listening.

Seriously folks, this is BS and needs to stop. The US govt via the NSA should NOT be performing this level of spying on trusted allies or US citizens not suspected of any wrongdoing. As an American living in the EU, it makes me sick that my home country is engaged in this activity.

Re:Why all the AC's? (1)

Black Parrot (19622) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152901)

It's pretty informative to see all the AC posts in this thread... what is everyone afraid of?!?

Oh, wait... the NSA is watching and listening.

Surely you don't think the NSA has any trouble figuring out who all these A/Cs are.

This is a shame (5, Insightful)

ebno-10db (1459097) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152819)

I'm a staunch supporter of Snowden's revealing how the NSA was violating the 4th Amendment, but it's a shame that he's now revealing stuff like this. It will weaken the outrage over the US government wiping its ass w/ the Bill of Rights, because people will say that now he is endangering national security by revealing this information. He is shooting himself in the foot. TPTB will also have more justification for going after him. Having access to secret information beyond what is necessary for making his original case about spying on US citizens makes him less secure, not more. It also lessens the sympathy he'll get from Americans.

P.S. The latest "revelations" don't shock me, I doubt they shock TPTB in other countries, and the only effect on foreign relations will be the usual faux outrage. It doesn't bother me that the NSA is doing this, in fact I'd be more upset (or at least surprised) if they weren't. I also don't think it will do much if anything to harm national security, but he's still playing it wrong.

Re:This is a shame (1)

Andover Chick (1859494) | 1 year,21 days | (#44153041)

For decades the CIA and NSA were put down for not being as good as the Russian KGB. Reason was the KGB bugged everyone and everything. It'd be shocked too if the NSA weren't somewhat good at broad surveillance.

Extradition (1)

DonaldGary (2451128) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152831)

If you were in one of the many countries the US was spying on would you extradite Snowden?

Re:Extradition (1)

Black Parrot (19622) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152907)

If you were in one of the many countries the US was spying on would you extradite Snowden?

For most countries, the answer probably depends on what kind of deal they can get.

Re:Extradition (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152937)

Sure, just please take a look at my countries other fine exports. Perhaps the US is in need of a couple of billions worth of stainless steel yearly, say over the next 30 years.

All this spying (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152863)

Yet 911 still happened.

Re:All this spying (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44153045)

9/11 happened, so all this spying

You've got it backwards I think.

Well, I've heard a lot of american reactions (4, Insightful)

kuldan (986242) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152891)

..to this lately, and most of them were in the "We are big, bad, mean motherfuckers so of course we do this and if you don't like it go fuck yourself or we nuke you" (paraphrased, not literally uttered.. even though nuclear weapons HAVE been mentioned once or twice in the discussion.. I think it was on gizmodo or some site like that..)

Guys, just turn around the situation and it would be China doing the same in the US.. wouldn't your outcry be as big as ours (German here), maybe even bigger?

Just because you have the biggest guns doesn't mean laws are not for you anymore, just as a reminder..

Also, having the biggest Aircraft Carrier in the block means nothing, if you actually would take on an opponent that can fight back.. (I've read up on a lot of NATO maneuvers where even our old diesel subs blatantly sunk US carriers and the commanders didn't even believe the sub commanders that they were there, until they surfaced like 500 feet away from the carrier in full broadside view of the torpedo tubes..)

Really, if you ask me, as a German with a strong national pride myself, the only political answer to this would be simple (and something our corrupt and incompetent government would NEVER do..): close all US bases on German soil, including Ramstein etc., remove every single American non-civilian personell from the country immediately..

and while we're at it consider if this constitutes an "armed" (as in cyber-warfare) attack against Germany (and our Allies) as based on NATO Article 5 (Casus foederis).

Also, leaving NATO would be another option.

The EU must be in a tricky place (1)

DrXym (126579) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152917)

I wouldn't be surprised if individual member states are bugging each other routinely to obtain an advantage when it comes to trade talks, treaty agreements and all the rest. I wonder how the EU even manages to police that let alone develop its own pan-European security agency with which to counter international threats.

Prism implies economic spying (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44152955)

Prism is to collect metadata following a budgeted strategy for the war on terror.
The NSA says that metadata has saved lives I think it means they crossed
the line between metadata and data for terrorism true positives.
Ethically they dont cross the line for real data to help us citizen in distress.
I think it implies that they collect economic data to help us citizen as a whole.
Unless it would be unfair use of taxpayers money. I mean us taxpayers money
because it may harm foreign countries microeconomies.

Little Green Men (1)

EzInKy (115248) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152957)

Everything that is "wrong" with the US today can explained by that 1947 incident. Afterall, war is good for business. Peace, of course, is good for business too. Afterall, even in the worst time someone makes a profit.

This is what intelligence agencies do (1)

guevera (2796207) | 1 year,21 days | (#44152965)

This is what intelligence agencies do. And this is what they should be doing. I would expect American intelligence agencies to be spying on every foreign government. Of course I'd hope they're spending more resources spying on China and Russia and Saudi Arabia than France and the U.K., but at the end of the day, nations don't have friends, only interests.

Remember when the French played coy about if they'd put their military under NATO command if the Russians invaded West Germany? Knowing whether that was just the French being the French or if they seriously planned to sit out WWIII would have been really helpful if you were responsible for U.S. deployments in the Fulda gap. That's why you spy on your allies. Gentlemen don't read each other's mail. Which is why we should avoid hiring gentlemen to work at CIA.

Everyone should (and no doubt did) expect this kind of thing. But in revealing methods and practices and details of operations Snowden has actually done something wrong. Revealing the details of NSA's pervasive spying on American citizens was a public service. Dude should get a medal for that. But revealing the details of how the U.S. is spying on foreign governments today is kinda the textbook definition of a traitor.

On balance I'd say Snowden has still been a net positive -- the NSA operation is evil, immoral, and unconstitutional. It's worth losing some diplomatic intelligence in order to expose it. But it's not like that was the inevitable price -- he chose to reveal this new stuff in addition to the earlier revelations.

Gentlemen (1)

SonnyDog09 (1500475) | 1 year,21 days | (#44153003)

How times have changed.

"Gentlemen don't read other gentlemen's mail." That's what Henry L. Stimson said in 1929 when he shut down the State Department's code breaking operations. Stimson was President Hoover's Secretary of State at the time.

Just like that brat, Caillou (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,21 days | (#44153021)

"Can't you all be first class trading partners, yet?!?!?"
"Are you STILL in a recession?!?!"
"Why won't you embrace more about our CULTURE?!?!?"

Yeah, that'd bug me too.

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