European intelligence agencies carry out massive Internet spying

Peter Schwarz

"When the CIA used European airspace to kidnap alleged terror suspects in order to torture them (so-called “extraordinary renditions”), quite different standards applied. Not a single government made claim to their sovereignty to close their airspace, although the flights were clearly illegal."

The forced landing of the Bolivian president’s plane in Vienna has exposed European governments’ protests against massive surveillance by the US intelligence agency NSA as a sham.

Evo Morales was forced to land in Vienna on Tuesday because several European countries—including France, Italy, Spain and Portugal—closed their air space to his aircraft, which was en route from Moscow to La Paz. This was due to incorrect suspicions that American whistleblower Edward Snowden was aboard the plane.

The incident was a disgrace, especially for the French President François Hollande. On Monday, he had criticized the NSA interception measures undertaken by the United States. “We cannot accept such conduct among partners and allies. We demand that this cease immediately”, he said.

On Tuesday, he then functioned as a deputy sheriff for the US intelligence services, endangering the life of the President of Bolivia in order to deliver up to the United States the man who revealed the scope of NSA wiretapping.

Forcing down the Bolivian president's plane was an act of piracy

John Pilger

Imagine the aircraft of the President of France being forced down in Latin America on "suspicion" that it was carrying a political refugee to safety – and not just any refugee but someone who has provided the people of the world with proof of criminal activity on an epic scale.

Imagine the response from Paris, let alone the "international community", as the governments of the West call themselves. To a chorus of baying indignation from Whitehall to Washington, Brussels to Madrid, heroic special forces would be dispatched to rescue their leader and, as sport, smash up the source of such flagrant international gangsterism. Editorials would cheer them on, perhaps reminding readers that this kind of piracy was exhibited by the German Reich in the 1930s.

The forcing down of Bolivian President Evo Morales’s plane – denied air space by France, Spain and Portugal, followed by his 14-hour confinement while Austrian officials demanded to "inspect" his aircraft for the "fugitive" Edward Snowden – was an act of air piracy and state terrorism. It was a metaphor for the gangsterism that now rules the world and the cowardice and hypocrisy of bystanders who dare not speak its name.

Lawlessness Is The New Normal

Paul Craig Roberts

In various articles and in my latest book, The Failure of Laissez Faire Capitalism And Economic Dissolution Of The West, I have pointed out that the European sovereign debt crisis is being used to terminate the sovereignty of the countries that are members of the EU. There is no doubt that this is true, but the sovereignty of the EU member states is only nominal. Although the individual countries still retain some sovereignty from the EU government, they are all under Washington’s thumb, as demonstrated by the recent illegal and hostile action taken on Washington’s orders by France, Italy, Spain, Portugal, and Austria against the airliner carrying Bolivia’s President Evo Morales.

Flying back to Bolivia from Moscow, Morales’ plane was denied overflight and refueling permission by Washington’s French, Italian, Spanish, and Portuguese puppets and had to land in Austria, where the presidential plane was searched for Edward Snowden. It was a power play by Washington to kidnap Snowden from Bolivia’s presidential airliner in defiance of international law and to teach upstart reformers like Morales that independence from Washington’s orders is not permitted.

The European puppet states went along with this extraordinary breach of diplomacy and international law despite the fact that each of the countries is incensed that Washington is spying on their governments, diplomats, and citizens. Their thanks to Snowden, whose revelations made them aware that Washington was recording their every communication, was to help Washington capture Snowden.

This tells us how much morality, honor, integrity there is left in Western civilization: Zero.

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