Answers to: NSA Surveillance Undermines US-EU Data Cooperation

Despite complaints about US surveillance, the EU continues to cooperate with the US

Brian Tau, 11-19, 20, The Wall Street Journal, EU Leans Heavily on U.S. Program tracking terror financing,

A new review by a civil-liberties watchdog has revealed the extent to which European governments have come to rely on a U.S. surveillance program that monitors global financial transactions for ties to terrorism. The Treasury Department’s Terrorist Finance Tracking Program, or TFTP, was created after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks. New data shows it is now widely used by European authorities—even as European Union institutions, concerned about the privacy of their citizens and possible surveillance, move to more strictly control transfers to the U.S. of data they gather. Some 40% of the database searches performed by Treasury were on behalf of EU member states or Europol, the EU’s law-enforcement arm, according to information gathered as part of a review by the U.S. Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board, an independent federal agency that advises the president on intelligence and counterterrorism programs.As a result of the audit, which covered three years, the board submitted classified recommendations to improve the program while its chairman, Adam Klein, issued a statement offering new details about the extent of U.S.-EU cooperation on counterterrorism efforts.Both sides of the Atlantic are grappling with the future of data sharing between the U.S. and Europe.Mr. Klein revealed that in one 35-month period examined by the board—Jan. 2016 to Nov. 2018—some 80,000 leads were shared with European authorities. Nearly 75% of all disseminations shared with foreign governments under TFTP have been with EU member states or institutions.The program, “though funded and operated by the United States, provides a steady stream of valuable intelligence to EU member states,” Mr. Klein said. “That should be welcome news to every American.”Much of the data queried by Treasury actually originates in Europe with a Belgian firm known by its acronym, Swift, which facilitates most of the world’s interbank messaging. A 2010 EU-U.S. agreement governs U.S. access to any Swift data stored in Europe for the purposes of counterterrorism. But EU member states and EU law-enforcement units also are able to request and use intelligence generated from the Swift network, passing its requests through the U.S. for searching and processing—bypassing the need for a European version of the program and relying on the U.S. to conduct sensitive and controversial searches of European data. The Treasury Department then uses its access to Swift data to run searches on behalf of European allies. “The EU has effectively deputized the U.S. Treasury to perform counterterrorism searches of European data,” said Mr. Klein.The U.S. has shared TFTP data with European partners about a number of serious terrorist attacks in Europe—including the 2017 truck attacks in Barcelona and Stockholm, the November 2015 Paris attacks by Islamic radicals and the 2011 mass shooting by right-wing terrorist Anders Breivik in Norway, according to the Treasury Department.The program has been controversial in Europe from the start. A number of lawmakers in the EU Parliament or within member state governments have called for it to be scrapped. Privacy activists have pushed for curtailing all types of data transfers to the U.S., which they claim doesn’t offer adequate privacy protections.Under the U.S.-EU agreement governing the program, European overseers monitor the TFTP for compliance with EU regulations. One is appointed by Swift, the other is appointed by the European Commission. Swift also appoints an external auditing firm to review the program.In general, the EU has much stricter rules governing personal data privacy. An EU effort to create its own version of TFTP has floundered, with one top official concluding in 2013 that it faced “serious challenges in terms of the data storage, access and protection.”A spokeswoman for the EU mission to the U.S. didn’t respond to a request for comment. The U.S. and EU have been wrangling over issues related to international data transfers for years with European regulators, parliamentarians and courts complaining that there are inadequate privacy protections in U.S. law for data queried for intelligence purposes.The latest twist came in July, when the European Court of Justice in a surprise ruling invalidated a widely used EU-U.S. data-transfer agreement known as Privacy Shield. The court ruled that the structure of U.S. intelligence programs left Europeans citizens vulnerable to American government surveillance without “actionable rights” to challenge such surveillance in court. The ruling didn’t affect TFTP, which is governed by a different separate EU-U.S. agreement, though the program and data-transfer issues broadly have long been one of the most difficult issues between Europe and the U.S.

It doesn’t matter if there is more data sharing in the world of the Pro because the US won’t have any data to share, as it has stopped collecting it. Regardless of any constraints, there is more data sharing in the world of the Con than the Pro

You should prefer our evidence – it is most recent and accounts for their arguments. Our November evidence says that despite concerns the counterterror cooperation continues.

US cooperation with France is high, and that is a bridge to all of Europe

John Grady, 11-12, 20, USNI, Panel: France Could be ‘Bridge Partner’ Between U.S., Europe to Counter China, Russia,

With a new American administration coming in January and the United Kingdom departing the European Union, France could be America’s new “bridge partner” to the continent in countering high-end military challenges from Moscow and Beijing and meeting reinvigorated terrorist threats, top security experts said Thursday. Despite divergent views “on strategic autonomy,” retired Adm. James Foggo, the former commander of U.S. Naval Forces Europe based in Naples, said “that was a big question for France” in 2009 when it re-integrated its forces — including its nuclear forces — with NATO. France pulled its military forces from NATO command in the 1960s and ordered the alliance headquarters out of Paris. Foggo noted that when France’s top military commander was asked at the time which way its missiles and nuclear forces were targeted, he said, “everywhere.” The security situation between the two nuclear powers has flipped almost 180 degrees. “The key thing here is continuing dialogue,” so that split doesn’t return, he said. The incoming Biden administration should be able work with Paris “to build a coalition of the willing” to meet the new security challenges Washington and the alliance will face, said Torrey Taussig, research director at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. As a recent example, Alice Guitton, the director-general for International Relations and Strategy for France’s Ministry of Armed Forces, said, “Our cooperation with the United States is all over the place.” Speaking at the Atlantic Council online forum, she called the cooperation “unprecedented” in the history of the alliance that dates back to the American Revolution. She cited Operation Dynamic Mongoose, a sophisticated antisubmarine, anti-surface warfare exercise involving the United States, France and Norway, as an example of “we train as we fight together.” The cooperation goes beyond exercises and Freedom of Navigation operations in the South China Sea. Foggo specifically mentioned how joint carrier operations with the French have matured over the years — from makeshift communication links to deconflict air and sea operations in 2009 to having carrier Charles de Gaulle (R91) fill the gap when there was no large-deck American presence in the Middle East. The navies are now backstopping each other as needed “We need to increase cooperation” at all levels, starting at the lieutenant and lieutenant commander level, Foggo said, to build trust over the years. Guitton, who carries the rank of ambassador, added that the collaboration crosses domains into space and cyber “to make sure we can cooperate” in times of crisis  “It’s ridiculous [not to be able] to share intelligence, strategic data,” Foggo added. “Everybody has a right to know what the threats are, what the targets are.” But Paris and Washington do not look at the world through the same lens. Foggo and Guitton both mentioned the United States’ National Defense Strategy’s emphasis on the return to great power competition and the need to be prepared for high-end conflict. This has been driving the Pentagon’s strategy, in terms of stationing and investment, to shift away from counterterrorism in the Middle East and Africa and put a sharp focus on the Indo-Pacific. While France is accepting the challenges of an aggressive China and a revisionist Russia, Guitton said President Emmanuel Macron sees the immediate threat of terrorism to Europe as a top priority. The French see the evidence of the danger surfacing again in the recent attacks in Lyon and Vienna. But Macron extends his view of terrorism as a major threat to Africa. He has dispatched air and ground forces to the continent to support governments in danger of collapse from organized terrorist attacks. A sailor aboard French Navy ship FS Bougainville (A622) waves as Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force ship JS Ise (DDH 182) sails by during Exercise Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2020 on Aug. 24, 2020. French Navy Photo Foggo and Guitton said France is carrying the “boots on the ground” military burden in Africa’s Sahel, the nations south of the Sahara desert, to bring terrorist groups there and in Libya under control. The United States is playing a support role in providing aerial surveillance, intelligence and logistics to French forces and governments like Mali and Niger in that effort.