Deter, Defend and Spy on Your Friends, by Brian Cloughley

What’s a little good natured surveillance among friends? Spies will be spies, after all. From Brian Cloughley at strategic-culture.org:

There’s no guarantee whatever that the NSA has refrained or will refrain in future from eavesdropping on Washington’s NATO allies.

In May there were many media reports concerning Steadfast Defender which is a series of land, air and sea deployments and manoeuvres by armed forces of nations of the U.S.-Nato military alliance that in the words of Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg are designed to show that Nato has “the resolve to deter and defend across the Euro-Atlantic area”. It was reported that “part of the focus of its first phase was to protect the undersea cables that carry masses of commercial and communications data between the U.S. and Europe. Nato says Russia is mapping the cables’ routing and might have darker intentions.”

Following Stoltenberg’s speech, delivered on board the British aircraft carrier Queen Elizabeth on May 27, Vice Admiral Andrew Lewis, commander of the U.S. Second Fleet and of Nato’s Joint Force Command for the Atlantic, issued a warning about the vulnerability of undersea cables, saying “we all lulled ourselves into thinking that the Atlantic was a benign region in which there was not anything bad going on, and we could just use it as a free highway. There are nations are out there mapping those cables. They may be doing something else bad. We have to be aware of that and answer that.”

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