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Abstract

The revelations of PRISM and XKeyscore by ex-National Security Agency (NSA) analyst Edward Snowden resulted in arguably the largest intelligence leak so far in the 21st century. The leak revealed that the NSA was working with the British Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) on surveillance and data collection of individuals throughout Europe. Similarly, the NSA also colluded with the German Federal Intelligence Service (BND) on similar data collection and surveillance activities. Whereas the British government reacted relatively benignly to the revelations despite cries of government abuse, the German government reacted negatively to the revelations, eventually opening a rift between Washington and Berlin. This paper examines the reactions to and the immediate political consequences of the Snowden revelations within the United Kingdom and Germany. By comparing and contrasting the two cases, one can determine whether the United States unnecessarily antagonized the Germans or if larger forces were at work.

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©2016 Jobel Vecino

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

 

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