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European Union: a terrorist organisation?!

 
 
izzythepush
 
  1  
Reply Mon 1 Jul, 2013 05:52 am
@edgarblythe,
There was a news article the other day about why the German reaction in particular is so strong. Surveillance brings back memories of the Gestapo and Stasi, there's no positive memory of espionage, unlike the UK during WW2 cracking the enigma code. There's no German James Bond figure. Maybe we'd be a bit more critical if we had a few more well publicised negative examples of espionage.
engineer
 
  1  
Reply Mon 1 Jul, 2013 06:08 am
Now is the time for the EU or perhaps just Germany to give Snowden asylum. That would both get him away from marginal players and make a very pointed statement to the US about what other countries think about their unfettered spying program.
0 Replies
 
Lordyaswas
 
  1  
Reply Mon 1 Jul, 2013 06:10 am
@izzythepush,
I know someone who works at the well known intercept centre in the Uk, and we often have watergate style conversations, where he stays silent and I then draw conclusions. If I get too interested, or the subject is a bit too touchy, things are called to a halt by a quick change of subject and/or a sudden need for him to visit the loo.
I gathered from him that this bugging business is old knowlege where he works, and when I suggested that this could be used to pass misinformation, he suddenly had to go and pee.
I knew to talk about something else when he came back.....

Some say that it was such misinformation and a slight change of specification within the Concordski spy saga that led to its crash in Paris in the early 70's.

The British have a good track record for outsneaking the sneaks, so I am led to wonder just exactly what the NSA have possibly been "fed" under such covert snoopings.


Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Mon 1 Jul, 2013 06:24 am
@izzythepush,
izzythepush wrote:

There was a news article the other day about why the German reaction in particular is so strong. Surveillance brings back memories of the Gestapo and Stasi, there's no positive memory of espionage, unlike the UK during WW2 cracking the enigma code.

I disagree with that opinion.
I'm not saying that anyone within the secret services is automatically an hero, but it's just something what has to be there.

Our States (16) and Federal Offices for the Protection of the Constitution are the domestic secret services ... the "GeStaPo" was part of the police ("secret state's police"), the StaSi worked domestic as well as international.

No, I really think that we have a totally different understand of our privacy and data: surveillance cameras are rarely to be found and need a lot of juridical work before they can be established, none of my data (phone, address etc) can be published without my consent etc etc
(I rejected all questions besides name, address and age at the 1987 census ... and got less questions after going to court and most were just voluntarily to answer the other year [like hundred thousands others] .)
0 Replies
 
izzythepush
 
  1  
Reply Mon 1 Jul, 2013 07:29 am
@Lordyaswas,
Misinformation or disinformation?
Lordyaswas
 
  1  
Reply Mon 1 Jul, 2013 07:42 am
@izzythepush,
Misinformation, of course. You wouldn't think that they would do that sort of thing on purpose, would you?
izzythepush
 
  1  
Reply Mon 1 Jul, 2013 07:58 am
@Lordyaswas,
Of course not.
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Mon 1 Jul, 2013 09:04 am
@Lordyaswas,
The Independent wrote:
"Every country in the world that is engaged in international affairs of national security undertakes lots of activities to protect its national security and all kinds of information contributes to that," he [Kerry] said. "All I know is that is not unusual for lots of nations."
Source
Obviously, you really should consider the EU and most of its member states to be a potential thread to US-security!
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Mon 1 Jul, 2013 10:40 am
@Walter Hinteler,
Quote:
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has compared US spying to Cold War tactics and Brussels wants EU facilities checked for American eavesdropping equipment. Concern is growing the scandal could seriously damage trans-Atlantic relations.
[...]
In addition, Germany's Foreign Ministry is performing a check on the security of its communications with embassies abroad while the Interior Ministry in Berlin is undertaking an examination of the safety of communication channels used by the German government.
[...]
In Berlin, the German Foreign Ministry called in US Ambassador Philip Murphy on Monday for consultations. Brussels likewise called in the US ambassador to the European Union, William Kennard.
[...]
Beyond the sharp words, however, are concerns that the spying allegations could result in an immediate worsening of trans-Atlantic relations and perhaps even have negative consequences for negotiations over the trans-Atlantic free trade agreement which started last month. Several diplomats have suggested that talks should be suspended temporarily, including European Commissioner Viviane Reding on Sunday.
[...]
The US, meanwhile, is biding its time. US President Obama said on Monday in Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania that his government is still looking at the revelations published in SPIEGEL. He said that once that examination is complete, the US will provide its allies with all of the information they are seeking.
Source
0 Replies
 
Olivier5
 
  1  
Reply Mon 1 Jul, 2013 12:18 pm
Snowden should be encouraged to come and work in Brussel, helping us spy on Washington.
Walter Hinteler
 
  2  
Reply Mon 1 Jul, 2013 01:44 pm
@Olivier5,
Quote:
President [Obama] says NSA will assess espionage allegations as France and Germany demand answers and warn of delay to trade talks
[...]
The German chancellor, Angela Merkel, and French president, François Hollande, demanded quick explanations from Washington about disclosures by the Guardian and Der Spiegel that US agencies bugged European embassies and parliament buildings. Berlin stressed there had to be mutual trust if trade talks were to go ahead in Washington on Monday.

Hollande went further, indicating the talks could be called off unless the alleged spying was stopped immediately and US guarantees were provided.
[...]
Source and full report
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Tue 2 Jul, 2013 09:25 am
By the way:

The German criminal code wrote:
Section 202a
Data espionage

(1) Whosoever unlawfully obtains data for himself or another that were not intended for him and were especially protected against unauthorised access, if he has circumvented the protection, shall be liable to imprisonment not exceeding three years or a fine.

(2) Within the meaning of subsection (1) above data shall only be those stored or transmitted electronically or magnetically or otherwise in a manner not immediately perceivable.

(Section 202b Phishing)

Section 202c
Acts preparatory to data espionage and phishing

(1) Whosoever prepares the commission of an offence under section 202a or section 202b by producing, acquiring for himself or another, selling, supplying to another, disseminating or making otherwise accessible

1. passwords or other security codes enabling access to data (section 202a(2)), or

2. software for the purpose of the commission of such an offence,

shall be liable to imprisonment not exceeding one year or a fine.

(2) Section 149(2) and (3) shall apply mutatis mutandis.
Walter Hinteler
 
  2  
Reply Thu 4 Jul, 2013 12:27 pm
@Walter Hinteler,
From The New Yorker
Quote:
JULY 4, 2013
THE N.S.A.’S COSTLY EUROPEAN ADVENTURE
POSTED BY STEVE COLL

http://i39.tinypic.com/t6w03c.jpg
Above: Protesters in Berlin. Photograph by Kay Nietfeld /DPA/AP.

(...)The new disclosures describe data collection and black-bag bugging jobs directed by the United States against European allies, including Germany, France, Britain, and the European Union.

The notionally sophisticated reaction in both Washington and Europe has been mais, bien sur—all countries spy on their friends and betray the trust of their allies (even when, as now, those allies have sent soldiers to fight and die in an expeditionary war, in Afghanistan, that the allies never much believed in, but signed up for mainly out of loyalty to the United States and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization). (...)
[...]
As the reporters James Fontanella-Khan and Joshua Chaffin pointed out in the Financial Times this week, American diplomats have for four years now waged “an ongoing, multi-agency effort to convince the E.U. to cooperate on a wide array of intelligence gathering, from sharing airline passenger data to watering down consumer data protection legislation.” Persuading democratic governments to share information on their citizens in the name of counterterrorism or any other security priority is fraught with legal and political problems in the best of circumstances. It will now be harder. Was what the Obama Administration learned about the French Ambassador worth it?

As every parent of a nine-year-old has recited at least once, just because “everyone” does something doesn’t mean that it’s smart. Britain reportedly has decided against bugging American facilities on the grounds that, if caught, the damage to London’s reputation in Congress and among the American public as a distinctive, thick-and-thin ally would outweigh any benefits in information collection. That may just be British spin trotted out this week because Government Communications Headquarters, Britain’s equivalent of the N.S.A., hasn’t been caught bugging an American embassy. Yet it is surely better to proffer that story than to say, We’re no worse than anybody else.

The British line reflects the hard lessons of intelligence history. There may be some official secrets that will long remain secret, even in the age of Wikileaks; and yet, no President or Prime Minister should approve a covert action unless he is persuaded after careful review that, even if the action is exposed, its benefits will likely exceed the costs of bad publicity.

The bugging of E.U. offices in Brussels, according to documents obtained by Der Spiegel, is on its face the most puzzling case. For years, nine-to-five European civil servants have been commuting through the dreary Brussels rain to their soul-crushing cubicles in the headquarters of the modern European proto-state, cursing the triviality of their meetings and drowning their sorrows at night with beer. Why break the laws of Belgium to listen in on these specialists in the economics of recycling, antitrust regulation, and the health risks of consumer plastics?

Was the mission to seek for the United States a negotiating edge in “Open Skies” aviation landing rights bargaining on behalf of United Airlines? Or to obtain a file of secret memos that would allow American diplomats to embarrass European agriculture ministers at the next round of talks over excessive Italian vineyard and olive subsidies?

The most likely explanation is that President Obama never carefully discussed or specifically approved the E.U. bugging, and that no cabinet-level body ever reviewed, on the President’s behalf, the operation’s potential costs in the event of exposure. America’s post-September 11th national-security state has become so well financed, so divided into secret compartments, so technically capable, so self-perpetuating, and so captured by profit-seeking contractors bidding on the next big idea about big-data mining that intelligence leaders seem to have lost their facility to think independently. Who is deciding what spying projects matter most and why?
0 Replies
 
 

 
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