Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

This #GivingTuesday, whatever is your first priority, your second priority has to be independent media.

2021 has been one of the most dangerous and difficult years for independent journalism that we’ve ever seen. Our democracy is facing serial existential threats including the climate emergency, vaccine apartheid amid deadly pandemic, a global crisis for biodiversity, reproductive freedoms under assault, rising authoritarianism worldwide, and corporate-funded corruption of democracy that run beneath all of this. Giving Tuesday is a critical opportunity to make sure our journalism remains funded so that we can stay focused on all your priority issues. Please contribute today to keep Common Dreams alive and growing.

Please Help This #GivingTuesday -- Though our content is free to all, less than 1% of our readers give. We’re counting on you. Please help Common Dreams end the year strong.

A woman talks on a cell phone on a street in Kabul. (Photo: Michael Foley/cc/flickr)

Afghan Fury Follows Revelations of NSA Spying

Government of Afghanistan statement decries phone call monitoring as "a violation of the human rights guaranteed to all Afghans."

Andrea Germanos

The Afghan government denounced on Sunday the revelations that the NSA is monitoring nearly all the phone calls in Afghanistan, saying it violates the nation's sovereignty and the human rights of its people.

The Intercept reported last week on new revelations of vast surveillance conducted by the United States in a series of countries but withheld the name of one of those target countries citing a "specific, credible concern that doing so could lead to violence." That country was subsequently revealed by WikiLeaks to be Afghanistan.

"These activities are an obvious violation of agreements based on technical use of these [telephone] stations," Agence France-Presse reports an Afghan government statement as saying. "Most importantly, it is a violation of the national sovereignty of Afghanistan, and a violation of the human rights guaranteed to all Afghans."

"These [telephone] stations are installed in Afghanistan by U.S. and Britain forces for the purpose of combating drug smuggling," the statement continues. "The National Security Adviser has been directed to raise these illegal activities and the anger of Afghan government with the U.S. and seriously investigate the issue."

Yet according to Graeme Smith, Senior Analyst for the NGO International Crisis Group, which works to prevent and resolve deadly conflict, the fact that such surveillance is happening is likely to be of no surprise to Afghans, telling Vice News' Patrick McGuire that "many Afghans imagine that the fictional Jack Bauer is a realistic depiction of U.S. intelligence at work."

Smith added, "There's a frenzy of concern about surveillance in the rich world at the moment, but over here the problems are more basic: rising violence, villagers fleeing their homes, Taliban choking off supply routes, the war economy grinding to a halt, etc."

___________________________


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

... We've had enough. The 1% own and operate the corporate media. They are doing everything they can to defend the status quo, squash dissent and protect the wealthy and the powerful. The Common Dreams media model is different. We cover the news that matters to the 99%. Our mission? To inform. To inspire. To ignite change for the common good. How? Nonprofit. Independent. Reader-supported. Free to read. Free to republish. Free to share. With no advertising. No paywalls. No selling of your data. Thousands of small donations fund our newsroom and allow us to continue publishing. Can you chip in? We can't do it without you. Thank you.

Number of Covid Boosters Given in US Exceeds Single Shots in 8 African Nations Combined

"Our leaders' failure to help bring the vaccines to everyone, everywhere will keep us on a cruel and never-ending cycle of illness, death, and economic suffering."

Jake Johnson ·


Omar Hangs Up After Boebert Uses Call to Double Down on 'Outright Bigotry and Hate'

"Instead of apologizing for her Islamophobic comments and fabricated lies, Rep. Boebert refused to publicly acknowledge her hurtful and dangerous comments."

Jessica Corbett ·


Win for Alabama Workers as NLRB Orders New Union Vote After Amazon's Alleged Misconduct

A union leader said the decision confirmed that "Amazon's intimidation and interference prevented workers from having a fair say in whether they wanted a union in their workplace."

Jessica Corbett ·


'For the Sake of Peace,' Anti-War Groups Demand Biden Return to Nuclear Deal With Iran

"It's time to put differences aside and return to the Iran nuclear deal," said one advocate.

Julia Conley ·


'That's for Them to Decide': UK Secretary Rebuked for Claiming Vaccine Patent Waiver Won't Be 'Helpful' to Global Poor

One U.K. lawmaker asked when the government would "start putting the need to end this pandemic in front of the financial interests of Big Pharma?"

Andrea Germanos ·

Support our work.

We are independent, non-profit, advertising-free and 100% reader supported.

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values.
Direct to your inbox.

Subscribe to our Newsletter.


Common Dreams, Inc. Founded 1997. Registered 501(c3) Non-Profit | Privacy Policy
Common Dreams Logo