German Chancellor Angela Merkel demanded answers from President Obama after learning the NSA had been spying on her cell phone. The allegation arose from reports by Der Spiegel, Germany’s paper of record. Merkel said the spying would be a “breach of trust” and threaten the good relationship between the United States and Germany. Apparently those who have tried to mute the NSA spying scandal by claiming normalcy were mistaken when it came to Germany’s expectations of privacy from friendly nations.
“Among close friends and partners, as the Federal Republic of Germany and the US have been for decades, there should be no such monitoring of the communications of a head of government,” the statement added, indirectly citing Merkel’s comments to Obama.
“This would be a serious breach of trust.” “Such practices must be stopped immediately,” the German chancellor told Obama, the statement said.
Surely the US doesn’t think the German Chancellor is involved in terrorism – the reported justification for the NSA’s massive spying programs. Does it? What is the justification for such surveillance?
Merkel has now summoned the US ambassador to Berlin for an explanation. The meeting is to take place today.
The ambassador John Emerson is to meet with German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle later Thursday, after Merkel’s spokesman Steffen Seibert said the chancellor had spoken Wednesday evening with President Obama via telephone. Seibert said that if the allegations were found to be true it would be “completely unacceptable.”…
He added that high level talks with representatives of the White House and the State Department had already taken place in Berlin to clarify the facts but that talks would be ongoing.
Chancellor Merkel’s concerns are well founded given the recent stories of NSA spying on the Mexican president (another friendly country). It seems in the new world engineered by the NSA and the Patriot Act there are no friendly nations – just enemies who have yet to reveal themselves. There are no citizens – just potential terrorists.