Earlier this year, it came to light that the German intelligence service, the Bundesnachrichtendienst (BND), had assisted the NSA in spying on European institutions, companies and even Germans. It came under heavy criticism for that. Then three weeks ago, news emerged that the BND had also systematically spied on friends and allies around the world, in many instances, of its own accord, not at the request of the NSA.
And now it has been revealed that the spying went further than previously reported. The BND spied on the United States Department of the Interior and the interior ministries of EU member states including Poland, Austria, Denmark and Croatia. It also included numerous foreign embassies and consulates as well as U.S. diplomatic outposts in Brussels and the United Nations in New York. Even Vatican telephones, email addresses and fax numbers were numbered with their surveillance targets.
The BND also spied on non-governmental organizations like Care International, Oxfam and the International Committee of the Red Cross in Geneva.
In October of 2013 Chancellor Angela Merkel was rather unhappy about spying on her mobile phone and said “Spying among friends? That’s just not done.” Apparently these words didn’t apply to the BND.
Spying among “friends,” and businesses enhances control. At times it can be very intimidating. Governments need to spy for many reasons, so they say, but ultimately it strengthens their control over their citizens and centralizes their power. Those are prerequisites for universal enforcement of their aims.
Global intelligence is required for globalization. Germany certainly engaged in global intelligence.