Not long ago Germans were up in arms about the escalation of spying activities by U. S. intelligence gathering agencies, but now the Americans are outraged by the activities of the German Federal Intelligence Service, the BND.
The intelligence service apparently has been spying on Germany’s allies. There is evidence that it has been tapping into data compiled by NATO ally Turkey for years while intercepting phone calls from U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and his predecessor, Hillary Clinton, as a “byproduct” of spying efforts.
Intelligence agencies exist to siphon off information from abroad to ensure the security of the nation. Outrage from friends or allies should be muted by that understanding.
It’s more plausible than surprising that the BND would be deeply interested in Turkey, a nation that is an important yet problematic partner located in the middle of a region riven by political and military crises. Yet the BND and the German federal government find themselves in the awkward position of justifying their actions just weeks after they excoriated the United States for similar activities.