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View Diary: Out of Control NSA Spied on U.N., E.U. (214 comments)

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  •  I started to rec this... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    congenitalefty, Tony Situ

    And then I thought again...

    You see, as much as I'm pissed off about the NSA domestic spying and widespread global internet and phone traffic hacking, I can't get as excited about spying on friendly governments.  That's almost a traditional part of spycraft.  

    Tell you what.  I'll let them spy on the UN and EU to their hearts content if they'll just leave the Internet backbone alone.

    •  I think any of our friendly allies would not (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Enzo Valenzetti

      mind that the USA gathered information on what is going on via public means, etc, but that the revelations of our spying on the internal workings of their governments - information is power, after all - raises a lot of ugly specters.

      After all, didn't we put Jonathan Pollard into prison for spying on us on behalf of Israel?  Isn't Israel an ally and friendly nation?  Well, if so, and if it doesn't matter, why did we put him in prison?

      Because spying on your friends -- stealing state secrets -- is wrong. Just as a spy from an enemy nation is imprisoned, so should a spy from a friendly nation.

      Frankly, I'm in favor of Germany imprisoning Clapper. Sperrt ihn für immer.

      "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

      by YucatanMan on Sun Aug 25, 2013 at 09:19:50 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I agree with this, and it reminds me why spying is (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Tony Situ

        such a dangerous occupation. It carries significant risks because although everyone spies on everyone else (countries, governments, political movements), no one likes being the target, everyone tries to prevent being spied upon themselves... and so when spies are caught and captured, they are punished severely ... even killed in many cases. Even though everyone knows they are all spying on each other all the time. The fact that spies are punished if caught doesn't translate into the idea that the spying should not occur. Anyone knows that being a spy (individual or agency) carries a huge risk of exposure and whatever comes from it.

        It seems to me this is true even in every day relationships, and work places, office politics. Snooping, gossiping and trading secrets and inside info, and taking risks to get hands on secret information, find out what's really going on, get an upper hand against opponents or those who may stand in your way or pose a perceived threat ... and doing so despite the risk of facing punishment, from simple embarrassment to being fired, if found out.

        But that doesn't stop it for a minute. Seems like human nature. That's why it seems unrealistic to me, to expect the US government to forego efforts to play this game. They will, no matter what we think. Being found out (outed by Snowden in this case) has been a big embarrassment and there will be some waves created, but nothing will fundamentally change I don't think. The US will spy, so will our friends and allies, and so will our opponents on the world stage. Those who are caught will take some lumps but I just find it hard to believe it's going to ever truly be stopped.

    •  qsdf (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      misterwade
      I'll let them spy on the UN and EU to their hearts content.
      I'm not an American, and I'd like for your country to fuck off with the spying.
      •  That's perfectly understandable. (0+ / 0-)

        I wouldn't want your country spying on mine, either.  

        But there's a magnitude of difference between spying on other countries and spying on your own people.  You can have a functional democracy that spies on its allies.  You can't have a functional democracy that spies on its citizens.  Big, big difference.

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