June 17, 2013:
By the end of 2018, the German [BND spy] agency intends to become a kind of mini-NSA and finally be able to compete in the global espionage business. Legislators have already approved €5 million for 2014, but are still wrangling over the rest of the funding.
Nevertheless, the official indignation over Prism [spying on Germans] has remained largely muted, partly because German authorities often benefit from the Americans’ secrets. Information from the NSA has played a role in nearly every major German terrorist case over the past decade. For example, it helped lead to the arrest and conviction of the would-be terrorists in Germany’s so-called “Sauerland cell,” led by Fritz Gelowicz. In 2006, the NSA intercepted email traffic between Germany and Pakistan. The trail led to a group of German Islamists who were planning deadly bomb attacks in Germany.