German Minister Calls Security A 'Super Fundamental Right' That Outranks Privacy; German Press Call Him 'Idiot In Charge'
from the going-down dept
One of the striking features of the Snowden story is that there has been no serious attempt to deny the main claims about massive, global spying. Instead, the fall-back position has become: well, yeah, maybe we did some of that, but look how many lives were saved as a result. For example, the day after the first leaks appeared, it was suggested that PRISM was responsible for stopping a plot to bomb the NYC subways. However, further investigation showed that probably wasn’t the case.
Now it seems that Germany is using the same tactic in an attempt to ward off growing domestic criticism — and encountering the same problem with that attempt to re-frame the narrative, as the Stars and Stripes site reports:
German Interior Minister Hans-Peter Friedrich is backing off his earlier assertion that the Obama administration’s NSA monitoring of Internet accounts had prevented five terror attacks in Germany, raising questions about other claims concerning the value of the massive monitoring programs revealed by NSA leaker Edward Snowden.
The same article quotes a particularly ridiculous comment made by the same Minister:
Defending NSA practices, Friedrich noted that security is a “super fundamental right.” As such it outranks fundamental rights such as privacy. German newspapers were scathing in their assessment, calling Friedrich the “idiot in charge.”
As that indicates, at least some in the European press are getting tired of mindless defenses of the spying program — as well as associated claims about how many lives it has saved.