The German intelligence service (BND) and the US National Security Agency (NSA) allegedly spied on European corporations and French high-ranking officials for years, shrouded in necessary secrecy, at least vis-a-vis the general public. This time, the NSA had not to break the codes since there seems to be more reliable information now available providing evidence the BND did indeed help the NSA. What’s been more surprising since the revelations started to emerge is that most of the scandal is rather taking place in Germany than in France, the apparent prime target of this joint BND-NSA espionage. The French media have tackled the news, the French aren’t happy about it of course, but they don’t appear to be as shocked as their German neighbors. “We the French we know our US ally is very interested in what our government and industry do, that’s why it’s not so much a surprise here,” a source told Cyceon.
Consequently, the real surprise has been the Germans learning that their intelligence service allegedly cooperated with the NSA against the interests of Europe as a whole and against France, their closest and most important economic partner. “The Germans are more sensitive when it comes to intelligence. Their historic past of a totalitarian regime, a 50-year period or so as a country divided into two countries and the bad souvenir of eastern German intelligence are likely explanations,” the source added. Meanwhile, the French government has opted for the low-profile approach – to some extent – with French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius who said “I have full trust in our German friends that if there was abuse in the past, such abuse never happens again.” However German Chancellor Angela Merkel might have some hectic time escaping the heat as both a number of the Bundestag members and the federal prosecuting authorities committed themselves to clearly establishing the responsibilities and the identity of the people who authorized the operation. Lastly the world-class European aircraft manufacturer Airbus Group announced its intention to take legal action.