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German Chancellor gets a taste of how it feels to be spied on

Germany's local Pirate Party gave a German Chancellor Angela Merkel a scare and then a chuckle on Tuesday during Chancellor Merkel's Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party campaign rally in the city of Dresden.  (Germany votes in a national election on Sept. 22.)

To protest the EU's use of surveillance drones -- including a recently shuttered local program that cost German taxpayers 500M € ($667.8M USD) -- a Pirate operator flew a small unmanned drone over the crowd up to the podium where the Chancellor was speaking.  

The drone appeared to take photos and video of the chancellor, who cracked a smile at the unusual sight.  Her defense minister to her left (in the right of the image) looked not so amused.  The super serious defense minister's face was locked in a severe frown at the sight.

Eventually police sighted the operator, and took him into custody, leading the drone to crash harmlessly.  The 23-year-old pilot was briefly detained, but was released.  No charges have been filed yet.

Chancellor MerkelChancellor Merkel is surprised by a Pirate Party drone guest. [Image Source: TorrentFreak]

Markus Barenhoff, vice chairman of the German Pirate Party, comments, "The objective of the mission was to convey to the Chancellor and Minister of Defence Thomas de Maizière what it’s like to be suddenly observed from a drone."

The reformist German Pirate party has little in the way of campaign cash, but its guerilla campaign tactics managed to score 2.0 percent of the vote in recent national elections -- the most of any chapter of the Pirate Party.  Many Pirate Party politicians have been elected to local offices in Germany, although Germany has put forth no Pirate Party reps (yet) as the Swedish chapter has.

Europeans are currently riled by the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) spying scandal.  German's in particular, were disturbed to learn that the NSA was targeting them at a higher rate akin to the rate at which it typically targets hostile/volatile regions.  The motivation behind the NSA's keen interest in Germany remains unclear.

Source: TorrentFreak

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RE: Behavior soon to be exported....
By cmart on 9/18/2013 11:36:06 AM , Rating: 2
In Germany we think different. No harm done - no hard consequences.

Attempted murder, then, is not a crime? Interesting.

Anyway, it would be pretty easy to weaponize a small drone. Secret service in the US would not have taken this so lightly. Silly us, I guess.

RE: Behavior soon to be exported....
By ShaolinSoccer on 9/18/2013 11:51:25 AM , Rating: 2
A guy in NY died recently when his "toy" helicopter ran into him. I'm sure the blades on drones can be weaponized pretty quick.

RE: Behavior soon to be exported....
By M'n'M on 9/18/2013 12:24:46 PM , Rating: 2
And when those blades are weaponized and run into someone, then people can say it was attempted murder. In this case no ramming attempt was made and we know the motives of the person involved. Bodily harm was not among them.

RE: Behavior soon to be exported....
By vXv on 9/18/2013 12:34:16 PM , Rating: 2
The difference is in that case there has been no intent to do harm to begin with.

So there has been no intent of harming anybody and nobody got harmed.

By YearOfTheDingo on 9/18/2013 2:46:04 PM , Rating: 1
A attempt to pull a prank like this in area protected by an elite counter-sniper team will end with somebody getting hurt.

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