Monday, 1 July 2013

Snooping On One's Own Allies

I think the US government has really put its foot in it this time.

The former Congressman Ron Paul is a controversial figure but what he said about the PRISM programme and its whistleblower makes sense:

"My understanding is that espionage means giving secret or classified information to the enemy. Since Snowden shared information with the American people, his indictment for espionage could reveal (or confirm) that the US Government views you and me as the enemy."

Interestingly, it's not just the American citizens who are the enemy. It's you, me, Snowden and the Germans too.

According to a report (well, one of the documents leaked out by Snowden), the US taps half-billion German phone and internet activities a month.

US combs through half a billion of German phone calls, emails and text messages on a monthly basis and has classified its European ally on the same target level as China, a German news magazine revealed.

The NSA document leaked by whistleblower Edward Snowden and published by Der Spiegel classified Germany as a “third-class” partner, on the same level as China, Iraq and Saudi Arabia, meaning that the US surveillance in Germany was stronger than in any other EU country.

"We can attack the signals of most foreign third-class partners, and we do it too," the document states.

It revealed that NSA monitors phone calls, text messages, emails and internet chat contributions and has saved the metadata (connections and not the content) at its headquarters.

NSA snooped through 20-60 million German phone connections and 10 million internet data sets a day, Der Spiegel claims.

In comparison, US tapped around 2 million connection data a day in France.

The only countries exempt from the surveillance attacks were Canada, Australia, Britain and New Zealand.

Talk about abusing your own allies.

I guess you're not an equal if you don't speak English like the rest of the big boys, who really hate being caught with their pants down.

It is amazing how Snowden has been vilified by the US government. He has been viciously called a traitor and a criminal. But what is truly criminal is the invasion of privacy by the government spying programme. All forms of spying is unethical, but this is really out of control.

Even more staggering, in my opinion, is this bit from Sovereign Man:

Yet amazingly enough, many polls show that roughly half of Americans think that Snowden is a traitor and should be prosecuted. And among the Twittering classes, the discussion quickly turned to Snowden’s ‘hot or not’ status as a potential sex symbol.

Such data is truly profound. Roughly half of Americans don't give a rat's eye about their own liberty. And it's obvious that the US government has every intention to continue these programs full speed ahead.

It worries me that people do not see the writing on the wall.

No comments: