In a guest editorial for Spiegel Online on
Tuesday, Justice Minister Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger said
reports that the United States could access and track virtually all
forms of Internet communication were "deeply disconcerting" and
"The more a society monitors, controls and observes its citizens, the less free it is," she said.
suspicion of excessive surveillance of communication is so alarming
that it cannot be ignored. For that reason, openness and clarification
by the U.S. administration itself is paramount at this point. All facts
must be put on the table."
Ferber, a member of Merkel's Bavarian sister party who sits in the
European Parliament, went further, accusing Washington of using
"American-style Stasi methods".
"I thought this era had ended when the DDR fell," he said, using the German initials for the failed German Democratic Republic.