Stinging from revelations about NSA spying on world leaders and intercepting voluminous private emails and phone calls of it’s citizens, European and South American countries have gone to the UN to seek redress. This comes on the heels of the discovery that the NSA has been spying on 35 world leaders and just one month after Brazilian leader, Dilma Rousseff, complained about NSA spying on her country.
Germany, Brazil, European countries, and several South American countries are meeting in Brazil today, to discuss legislation within the UN to prohibit the wholesale spying on private citizens as well as their leaders. The draft does not specify the NSA spying as the reason for the new laws, but it is apparent that is what the law is designed to get rid of.
The United States diplomatic corps is under fire and are finding they no longer have credibility around the world as their constant denials have been replaced by disclosures from documents stolen by Eric Snowden.
A former defense official was quoted as saying:
“This is an example of the very worst aspects of the Snowden disclosures. It will be very difficult for the US to dig out of this, although we will over time. The short term costs in credibility and trust are enormous.”
The ability of the UN to actually curtail NSA operations is next to nothing, other countries could pull back from agreements on intelligence sharing. As Ray Kimball, and Army strategist put it, “The worst case scenario I think would be having our European allies saying they will no longer share signals intelligence because of a concern that our SigInt is being derived from mechanisms that violate their privacy rules.”
When the original rules of privacy were set up in 1976, the Internet did not exist, so this would be more like updating a law on the use of horse and buggies on city streets.
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