The National Security Agency (NSA) headquarters at Fort Meade, Maryland, as seen from the air, in this January 29, 2010 file photo. US spies are secretly tapping into servers of nine Internet giants including in a vast anti-terror sweep targeting foreigners, reports said on June 7, 2013. Some of the biggest firms in Silicon Valley were caught up in the program, known as PRISM, including Microsoft, Yahoo, Google, Facebook, Apple, PalTalk, AOL, Skype and YouTube, the reports said. The Washington Post, citing a career intelligence officer, said the NSA had direct access to Internet firm servers to track an individual’s web presence via audio, video, photographs and emails. (AFP PHOTO/Saul LOEB)
This well-researched and fascinating opinion piece in Der Spiegel by commentator Jakob Augstein details how much privacy both we in the US and the UK have surrendered to the government and how the US and the UK are now spying on every country in the world.
Americans have allowed this to happen without a peep from either political party. The “Patriot Act” authorizes a lot of this although I find little patriotic about it. To protect ourselves from terrorism we have surrendered our rights of individual privacy. “Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty,” said Thomas Jefferson. As in so many things, he was correct.
The headline could be from the Third Reich since prior and during World War Two, the Germans referred to the Western Allies as the “Anglo-Saxon powers”.
Overzealous data collectors in the US and Great Britain have no right to investigate German citizens. The German government must protect people from unauthorized access by foreign intelligence agencies, and it must act now. This is a matter of national security.
[Source: Der Spiegel. Image courtesy of Der Spiegel.]