Are European Leaders Upset with the NSA?
The European response to news that the U.S. National Security Agency was spying on European leaders like German Chancellor Angela Merkel has amounted to little more than a stern rebuke, at least for the moment.
After a meeting about telecommunications rules, members of the European Union said that though they disapprove of the NSA’s methods, the best way to settle the matter is to host private talks on the issue in the coming months, according to The Economist. A move like suspending trade talks between the United States and the EU seems unlikely. France and Germany are set to represent the interests of European countries during the meetings.
After many of the NSA’s activities were blown open by the revelations of Edward Snowden, outrage was prevalent not only within the U.S. but across the rest of the world, as well. Many international leaders expressed dismay, outrage, or even disbelief at the tactics the NSA was using to monitor the activities of people in America.
The problem is that while criticizing the NSA is easy, standing up to criticism is much harder. It’s not hard to take the moral high ground, but it’s difficult to defend it; France is well known for its corporate espionage, and the German intelligence agency, the BND, is famous both for its efficiency and its secrecy in methodology, according to The Fiscal Times.