The National  Memo Logo

Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.

Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

Berlin (AFP) – The U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) has collected sensitive data on key telecommunications cables between Europe, north Africa and Asia, German news magazine Der Spiegel reported Sunday citing classified documents.

Spiegel quoted NSA papers dating from February and labelled “top secret” and “not for foreigners” describing the agency’s success in spying on the so-called Sea-Me-We 4 undersea cable system.

The massive bundle of fibre optic cables originates near the southern French city of Marseille and links Europe with north Africa and the Gulf states, continuing through Pakistan and India to Malaysia and Thailand.

“Among the companies that hold ownership stakes in it are France Telecom, now known as Orange and still partly government-owned, and Telecom Italia Sparkle,” Spiegel said.

It said NSA specialists had hacked an internal website belonging to the operator consortium to mine documents about technical infrastructure including circuit mapping and network management information.

“More operations are planned in the future to collect more information about this and other cable systems,” Spiegel quoted the NSA documents as saying.

Der Spiegel has over the last several months reported on mass NSA spying on targets in the United States and abroad using documents provided by fugitive intelligence contractor Edward Snowden.

A White House-picked panel this month recommended curbing the secretive powers of the NSA, warning that its spying sweeps in the “war on terror” had gone too far.

President Barack Obama plans to address the report in January.

Advertising

Start your day with National Memo Newsletter

Know first.

The opinions that matter. Delivered to your inbox every morning

Jeff Danziger lives in New York City. He is represented by CWS Syndicate and the Washington Post Writers Group. He is the recipient of the Herblock Prize and the Thomas Nast (Landau) Prize. He served in the US Army in Vietnam and was awarded the Bronze Star and the Air Medal. He has published eleven books of cartoons, a novel and a memoir. Visit him at DanzigerCartoons.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer

Washington (AFP) - Republicans in the US Senate prevented action Thursday on a bill to address domestic terrorism in the wake of a racist massacre at a grocery store in upstate New York.

Democrats had been expecting defeat but were seeking to use the procedural vote to highlight Republican opposition to tougher gun control measures following a second massacre at a Texas elementary school on Tuesday.

Keep reading... Show less
{{ post.roar_specific_data.api_data.analytics }}