What people are saying about the the alleged monitoring of world leaders.
The Boston Globe, editorial: "The Obama administration must do all it can to rebuild trust with key allies who are outraged over allegations that the National Security Agency has spied on at least 35 world leaders and engaged in large-scale collection of electronic communications in Europe. ... The United States can't risk being on the wrong side of the entire world. It is time for the United States and its allies to agree upon new rules of the road which all governments must be expected to follow."
Adam Clark Estes, Gizmodo: "News like this is hardly shocking. It is potentially significant, though, and definitely poorly timed. Rather than the domestic outrage over things like the NSA collecting everybody's phone records, spying on world leaders stands to have serious economic and political repercussions for the United States."
Frida Ghitis, CNN: "The question is whom should the government be allowed to target in its invasion of privacy, and who should make that decision? The existing system is far too lax. ... I suggest the establishment of an intelligence and privacy board, a group made up of individuals with strong knowledge of national defense, security, ethics, privacy and diplomacy. Let them, under strict clearance, review the decision-making process."
Bloomberg, editorial: "Better than President Obama's appointment of a commission to review surveillance programs would be a law that lets U.S. companies disclose information about government requests for customer data, which would help shore up their credibility overseas. Legislators are considering that possibility, as well as provisions that would curtail the bulk collection of phone records and require a public advocate in the secret court that oversees surveillance programs. As those provisions are debated, here's a favor that U.S. policymakers could do themselves at home and abroad: Be more forthcoming with details about how such programs have actually made the world a safer place."
Christopher Dickey, The Daily Beast: "There is something terribly cyclical — and dangerous — about the ebb and flow of intelligence community abuses and public reactions over the years. The spooks overreach, the public overreacts, and what should be the reasonable business of spying gets vilified and cut back until, one day, disaster strikes, and the public wonders why 'nobody warned us.' Yes, think 9/11."
Andrew Stuttaford, National Review: "The main lesson is to be more careful next time. For now, however, expect the noisy theater to continue for a while as manufactured outrage is followed by insincere apologies and muttered promises never, never to do it again, promises that will (hopefully) be broken as soon as they are made."
Mano Singham, Free Thought Blogs: "It is one thing to be aware that nations may spy on one another in targeted and specific ways, but it is quite another to think that someone is monitoring and storing all your communications. And at least among leaders who are ostensibly allies, they may expect to receive some privacy even if they are willing to sacrifice the privacy of some of their citizens. No one should be comfortable with the idea that every conversation they have is being listened to and recorded. Apart from the sheer creepiness of it, it opens up the very real possibility of blackmail."