1 Updates
US spymaster defends spying on world leaders
Photo Credit: , Getty Images

US spymaster defends spying on world leaders

Oct 30 2013, 12:36am CDT | by IANS

Washington, Oct 30 (IANS) America's top spymaster offered "the Casablanca defence" for the US spying on world leaders, including its close allies, saying everyone did it and trying to determine foreign leaders' intentions was a "fundamental given".

Washington, Oct 30 — America's top spymaster offered "the Casablanca defence" for the US spying on world leaders, including its close allies, saying everyone did it and trying to determine foreign...

Filed under: news

YouTube Videos

 
 
 

38 weeks ago

US spymaster defends spying on world leaders

Oct 30 2013, 12:36am CDT | by IANS

Washington, Oct 30 (IANS) America's top spymaster offered "the Casablanca defence" for the US spying on world leaders, including its close allies, saying everyone did it and trying to determine foreign leaders' intentions was a "fundamental given".

Washington, Oct 30 — America's top spymaster offered "the Casablanca defence" for the US spying on world leaders, including its close allies, saying everyone did it and trying to determine foreign leaders' intentions was a "fundamental given".

"Some of this reminds me a lot of the movie Casablanca, 'My God there is gambling going on around here.' It's the same thing I think," Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said at a House intelligence panel hearing Tuesday.

The reference to the 1942 American romantic drama film set in a gambling den in the Moroccan city came at a hearing "About Spying on Our Allies" in response to a query from the panel's Republican chairman Mike Rogers.

Trying to determine the intentions of foreign leaders -- by getting close to them or getting their communications -- is a "fundamental given" among intelligence services, and one of the first things he learned in his 50-year intelligence career, Clapper said.

The hearing came amid a brewing controversy over reports that US National Security Agency has been listening in to the conversations of 35 foreign leaders including German chancellor Angela Merkel for years.

Asked by Rogers if he believes US allies conducted espionage activities against US leaders, he said, "Absolutely."

Former NSA contractor Edward Snowden's revelations about US intelligence-gathering activities have been "extremely damaging," Clapper said. But the activities themselves have been lawful, and "rigorous oversight" has been effective, he added.

"We do not spy on anyone except for valid foreign intelligence purposes and we only work within the law. Now, to be sure, on occasion, we've made mistakes -- some quite significant," Clapper acknowledged.

NSA director Gen. Keith Alexander himself denied that the US collected telephone and e-mail records directly from European citizens, calling reports based on leaks by Snowden "completely false."

"To be perfectly clear, this is not information that we collected on European citizens. It represents information that we, and our NATO allies, have collected in defence of our countries and in support of military operations," he said.

He said European intelligence services collected phone records in war zones and other areas outside their borders and shared them with the NSA.

Alexander vigorously defended the agency's intelligence gathering activities, saying it has saved lives "not only here but in Europe and around the world."

As the US spy chiefs testified, two ranking Democratic and Republican lawmakers introduced bills that call for greater transparency and oversight of the NSA's surveillance programmes.

But during the hearing, Rogers said collecting foreign intelligence was important to protecting Americans and allies from terrorism.

"Every nation collects foreign intelligence. That is not unique to the United States," he said. "What is unique to the United States is our level of oversight, our commitment to privacy protections, and our checks and balances on intelligence collection."

(Arun Kumar can be contacted at arun.kumar@ians.in)

IANS

Source: IANS

 

Don't miss ...

 

blog comments powered by Disqus

Latest stories

Indian-origin woman admits to killing son in Scotland
London, July 25 (IANS) An Indian-origin woman Friday admitted to punching her three-year-old son to death at their home in Edinburgh, Scotland, in January.
 
 
Three killed in Thailand car bomb explosion
Bangkok, July 25 (IANS) At least three people were killed and 40 injured Friday when a car bomb exploded in Thailand's Yala province.
 
 
Nepal is high priority for India: Sushma
Kathmandu, July 25 (IANS) Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj arrived here Friday, saying the new Narendra Modi government held relations with Nepal in "high priority".
 
 
Gaza toll reaches 835
G0aza, July 25 (IANS) The toll in the ongoing Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip has escalated to 835, with more than 5,300 injured, the health ministry in the coastal enclave said Friday.
 
 
 

Latest from the Network

Video: Don’t be fooled by this extremely detailed iPhone 6 clone running Android
The iPhone 6 isn’t even out yet and it already has a few clones that mimic its appearance and software very well, with 9to5Google having found a new video hands-on demo of one such device. While the clone is based on...
Read more on Apple Balla
 
Shuttler Sai Praneeth loses in Russia
Vladivostok, July 25 (IANS) The Indian challenge at the $50,000 Russian Open Grand Prix came to an end after shuttler B. Sai Praneeth lost his men's singles quarter-final match here Friday. The sixth seeded Indian...
Read more on Sport Balla
 
Apple Planning to Avoid Competition between the Two Models of iPhone 6
Apple is looking to set up a unique strategy to boost the upcoming iPhone 6 sales, as a new report claims that the company is organizing a plan of preventing competition between the two new variants.According to Mac...
Read more on Apple Balla
 
Indian-origin woman admits to killing son in Scotland
London, July 25 (IANS) An Indian-origin woman Friday admitted to punching her three-year-old son to death at their home in Edinburgh, Scotland, in January. Rosdeep Adekoya, 35, admitted to assaulting and killing her...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Earth missed solar catastrophe just a year back: NASA
Washington, July 25 (IANS) Just a year ago, on July 23, the Earth missed being hit by a giant solar flare from the most powerful storm on the sun in over 150 years, NASA has said in a sensational revelation. "If it...
Read more on Apple Balla
 
CWG: Sunibala to vie for 70kg judo bronze
Glasgow, July 25 (IANS) Sunibala Huirdom of India will fight for a 2014 Commonwealth bronze medal in the women's -70kg judo event after beating Canadian Monika Burgess in the Repechage contest. However, Garima...
Read more on Sport Balla
 
Three killed in Thailand car bomb explosion
Bangkok, July 25 (IANS) At least three people were killed and 40 injured Friday when a car bomb exploded in Thailand's Yala province. The bomb blast occurred at Betong district of the province at around 4.40 p.m., the...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Nepal is high priority for India: Sushma
Kathmandu, July 25 (IANS) Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj arrived here Friday, saying the new Narendra Modi government held relations with Nepal in "high priority". "The new government in India has put...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Indian hockey team win CWG opener
Glasgow, July 25 (IANS) The Indian men's hockey team Friday began their Commonwealth Games campaign with a facile 3-1 win over lowly Wales in a Pool A tie at the Glasgow National Hockey Centre here. In what was a lazy...
Read more on Sport Balla
 
CWG: Malaika shoots silver for India
Glasgow, July 25 (IANS) India's first medal from the shooting ranges in the 2014 Commonwealth Games came from 16-year-old Malaika Goel, who shot down a silver in the women's 10m air pistol event, while her role model...
Read more on Sport Balla