German prosecutors give spies a walk, but investigate journalists for "treason"

[Read the post]


Y’know, as I get older I try to not get even more cynical about the world.

But jeez…


Out German politics seem to have a shitload of fear of the US and UK.

1 Like

I think investigating journalists for doing their job is a reprehensible practice and Germans should get a handle on this before it gets out of control, although it’s hard to argue it hasn’t already.

That being said, how much investigation did you really expect from the Germans of the US spy agencies? What are they going to do? Arrest the CIA? Their options are limited. Germany isn’t going to risk a diplomatic slap-fight with the US by imposing trade restrictions, which is about all they could really do short of something much more overblown, like war.

1 Like

There are STL files of Snowden statue/bust out there. So if you got a 3d printer you can make yourself one. Or a dozen.

1 Like

Update: investigation suspended:


Why? That’s why:

Citizenfour Part 2 is… German.
More? Soon.

Edward Snowden is American, I am Swiss. Swiss Businesswoman and… Refugee. #SAPLeaks @CaroOlsen


It was a farce anyway - the federal prosecutor knew he had no chance pursuing this. After the constitutional complaint from the magazine Cicero in 2007 investigations/prosecution like this will be immediately thrown out of court by any judge. It was a massive PR headache for the prosecutor and government then. No one wants to repeat something like this.


If anything it’s a pretty easy rhetorical step to show how shitty this…I guess, now-halted, prosecution is. Other than that, I think the zee Germans could decide to withhold or cut down on the amount of information their state security apparatus shares with similar agencies in the US (and maybe they are, but us peons will likely not know for the next ten/twenty years). They could also oppose us in various actions within the UN or other multinational agencies even though I would surmise that US interests often but not always align with German interests.

That is to say that the Germans don’t necessarily have to directly oppose the US (e.g. bring charges against CIA agents or kick out our ambassadors) in order to negatively reward the behavior of the US clandestine state-security system.


Absolutely, but that isn’t really anything the judicial system is equipped to do.


It seems that the charge of treason was set up as a proforma way to activate pervasive surveillance on the journalists - the prosecutor knew he had no case, but under german law he needed to paper a felony serious enough in order to deploy the full spyware/trojan/network tap arsenal on Netzpolitik.

Source: (in german)

1 Like

And things just got interesting again.

After the government had distanced itself from the investigation the attorney general held a press conference. He said that he got an external expert opinion that confirmed part of his position, that what was published was a state secret. Then he was ordered by the Minister of Justice to drop that opinion. Such horrible political interference with investigation that should be independent, etc!

1 Like

… and fired!

This topic was automatically closed after 5 days. New replies are no longer allowed.