September 11, 2013
The U.S. Has No Right to Spy on Masses of Regular People in Other Countries

I am not suggesting that the United States should abandon collecting foreign intelligence entirely. What I am suggesting is that certain kinds of international spying are morally permissible and legitimate, while other sorts are immoral and illegitimate. Drawing a coherent line is extremely difficult, and certainly beyond my abilities, but I can give examples of what I regard as clearly legitimate and what is clearly illegitimate. An example of spying to which I don’t object: intercepting intra-regime communications in Syria. An example of spying that strikes me as contrary to American ideals: dragnet spying on the private communications of every German citizen. The NSA was created in an era when technological limitations ensured that foreign spying would be directed, for the most part, at foreign governments. Now we have the ability to accumulate massive data on masses of individuals in liberal democracies.
We have no moral right to do so. Just as Britain’s intelligence agency has no moral right to break into my email account or to maintain a database with my Skype calls.
Read more. [Image: Mr. T in DC/Flickr]

The U.S. Has No Right to Spy on Masses of Regular People in Other Countries

I am not suggesting that the United States should abandon collecting foreign intelligence entirely. What I am suggesting is that certain kinds of international spying are morally permissible and legitimate, while other sorts are immoral and illegitimate. Drawing a coherent┬áline is extremely difficult, and certainly beyond my abilities, but I can give examples of what I regard as clearly legitimate and what is clearly illegitimate. An example of spying to which I don’t object: intercepting intra-regime communications in Syria. An example of spying that strikes me as contrary to American ideals: dragnet spying on the private communications of every German citizen. The NSA was created in an era when technological limitations ensured that foreign spying would be directed, for the most part, at foreign governments. Now we have the ability to accumulate massive data on masses of individuals in liberal democracies.

We have no moral right to do so. Just as Britain’s intelligence agency has no moral right to break into my email account or to maintain a database with my Skype calls.

Read more. [Image: Mr. T in DC/Flickr]

9:43am
  
Filed under: NSA Spying Civil liberties 
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    The U.S. Has No Right to Spy on Masses of Regular People in Other Countries I am not suggesting that the United States...
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    AGREE OR DISAGREE?
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