America’s totalitarian inclinations

In Der Spiegel, Laura Poitras, Marcel Rosenbach and Holger Stark write: Now that Snowden has afforded the world a glimpse of the inner workings of the NSA, it has become clear that Obama is, at best, telling only a small portion of the truth. With evidence indicating that the NSA bugged EU offices and summits in Brussels attended by world leaders, the fight on terror is no longer a valid excuse. Luxembourg’s Foreign Minister Jean Asselborn, President of the European Commission Jose Manuel Barroso and European Parliament President Martin Schulz don’t seriously pose a threat to anyone.

The Americans’ colossal spying operation smacks of totalitarianism. SPIEGEL has viewed an internal NSA presentation which lays out a vision of “Information Superiority”: a worldwide dominance of information networks. This vision was drawn up several years ago and it seems safe to assume that the US has come a significant step closer to implementing it since then. In it, the NSA openly refers to Germany as both a friend and a foe. “We can, and often do, target the signals of most third party foreign partners,” it boasts.

The NSA’s totalitarian ambition regarding information-gathering does not affect just states and authorities. It does not affect just businesses. It affects us all. It even affects those who think they have nothing to hide.

A constitutional state cannot allow it. None of us can allow it. [Continue reading…]

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One thought on “America’s totalitarian inclinations

  1. delia ruhe

    These German writers are not pulling any punches. I’m surprised that no one else has described the NSA programs so accurately: “The Americans’ colossal spying operation smacks of totalitarianism,” and “the fight on terror is no longer a valid excuse.” If only those two points could be driven home, a real debate — “real” as distinct from what Obama ostensibly welcomes — could begin. Jürgen Trittin’s suggestion that Merkel should change her mind and offer Snowden asylum is an excellent one — but not one that’s going to be considered. Germany and the rest of Europe have been behaving like a “Poodle Parade” (as Pepe Escobar calls them) for too long. The German government has been rolling over too long with respect to delivering masses of personal data to the US for it to suddenly protest very loud.

    Snowden and his assist, WikiLeaks were smart to send out requests across the planet for asylum. The responses and non-responses are enlightening — proof positive of Washington’s bullying. What’s needed are some new international laws to protect the rest of the world from a superpower out of control.

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