Former german Chanceller Gerhard Schröder says he’s not surprised to hear he was the target of NSA surveillance beginning in 2002 in response to his opposition of the Iraq war. German newspaper Suddeutsche Zeitung today said NSA snooping on the current Chancellor, Angela Merkel was nothing new and the agency has spied on German leaders’ communications since at least 2002.
Schröder came out openly against the planned US invasion of Iraq, and officials at the time reportedly feared a split within NATO and ordered him placed under NATO SIGINT “special collection” targeting. Unnamed US officials defended the targeting, saying they “had resume to presume he was not contributing to the success of the alliance.”
The former chancellor said that at the time “I would never have entertained the idea that the US secret services would be listening in on me,” but that amid all of the NSA scandals now it “comes as no surprise.”