Bugging scandal threatens US-EU trade ties

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PostWed Jul 03, 2013 4:41 am » by grimghost

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Even close allies did not escape the all-seeing NSA surveillance eye. New reports indicate that the National Security Agency not only spied on American citizens but also European allies.

A contractor named Ed Snowden's disclosure of alleged secret NSA programs to collect U.S. and international data triggered concern and outrage in Germany and other European countries. According to some reports, the German government will also question President Obama about the program. The statements come as the new allegations emerge that the NSA surveilled EU members offices in the US, Brussels and the UN.

Key allies are threatening an investigation leading to possible sanctions against the US. A spokeswoman for the European Commission said on Sunday the EU contacted U.S. authorities in Washington and Brussels about the reports.

The NSA's program has proven to be so pervasive and the backlash so severe that some have speculated that it could threaten the Transatlantic Trade agreement, the investment partnership between Europe and the US. However, some experts say there is little chance that will happen.

With an economic crisis in Europe members of the EU and the US plan to forge a deal by November 2014.

Two US officials familiar with American electronic espionage programs are not commenting on the allegations. Speaking on the condition of anonymity in discussing sensitive national security matters they said that multinational institutions are routine targets for both technological and human intelligence

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PostWed Jul 03, 2013 2:20 pm » by Tuor10

The biggest winner out of this whole saga - has to be Russia.

For the past five years, Germany and France have become very close with Russia. In fact, they have become heavily dependent on Russian energy supplies. This friendship has become profitable for all concerned; plus there is a consensus building among many top EU officials that a formal pact with Russia would be more beneficial to the EU in the long term.
The fact is, Europe, not Britain, have become increasingly skeptical about the need to keep the U.S. as a key EU ally. To many, the U.S. is another continent, and a competitor to EU ambitions.
All this puts Britain in a precarious position. If it came to to who Britain would hedge their bets with, I suspect it would be with the U.S. all the time. I mean, the American nation is Britain's refractory child, who has grown up big and strong. Britain would not turn her back on her child in favor of those who we spent most of our history fighting.

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