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Muslim countries bore brunt of US spying

29th Nov 2013

By Taylor Parker

Muslim countries bore the brunt of the US global wiretapping of computer and telephone surveillance, according to leaked information from National Security Agency (NSA) data-mining tool known as ‘The Boundless Informant’.

The top three countries affected are Iran with around 14 billion reports from over 30 days of surveillance followed closely by Pakistan with 13.5 billion and most shocking is US ally Jordan with 12.7 billion cases.

The NSA operates under the jurisdiction of the Department of Defense and reports to the Director of National Intelligence, the main producer and manager of signals intelligence for the US.

Separate reports of US tapping phone were leaked by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden who disclosed classified information about US mass surveillance.

NSA recorded 125,000,000,000 phone calls and messages in January of this year alone.

Many of the recordings concentrated in the Middle East with Saudi Arabia and Iraq at a total of 7.8 billion wiretapping incidents each, while Egypt had less incidents with 1.8 billion cases which are by no means an inconsiderable sum.

These revelations come amongst a flurry of allegations against the US wire tapping phones and monitoring computers. There were other countries affected, many of whom are US allies.

President Barack Obama was dragged into the trans-Atlantic spying row after it was claimed he personally authorised the monitoring of German Chancellor, Angela Merkel’s phone three years ago.

The President allegedly allowed US intelligence to listen to calls from the German Chancellor’s mobile phone after he was briefed on the operation by NSA Director, Keith Alexander, in 2010.

Argentinean President, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, said she felt “ a shiver going down my spine when I see that they are spying on all of us” highlighting the personal effect of the roofless NSA spying program.

People around the world are taking action against the NSA spying programs. Thousands of people flocked to the streets of Washington on October 25 to protest against the NSA as part of the #StopWatchingUs rally.

 

However, Obama defended NSA, which he acknowledged has the “mechanisms that can track a phone number or an email address that is connected to a terrorist attack.  That information is useful.”

There have been other domestic scandals involving spying and discrimination against Muslims. Earlier this year the New York Police Department paid informants to go into mosques and spy on ordinary citizens.

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