With the repeated history of repressive surveillance practices ingrained into cultural memory, Germany seems to know this narrative well. Malte Lehming is a frequent contributor and participant at AICGS whose recent essay in Der Tagesspiegel* suggests that there has been a subtle transformation of the “never-do-evil” logic into a “never-allow-evil” strain. Construing Edward Snowden no longer as simply a whistleblower, but as a persecuted revolutionary, this altered logic also casts both the U.S. and German intelligence communities in a negative light. Meanwhile, Putin’s dream of “driving a wedge between the transatlantic partnership” is coming true.
*A translation of this essay appears in the National Interest on November 5, 2013.