This whole thing is getting surreal. There is a report out yesterday that the NSA "listened to phone calls to and from the Vatican and wiretapped the accommodation where Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, future Pope Francis, was staying at the time."
I am not a big fan of the institution of the Pope, but wouldn't you agree that this is going very far afield? If nothing else, it should convince those few unconvinced people out there that these pervasive surveillance programs have almost nothing to do with thwarting terrorism...unless, of course, you view the Pope as a potential terrorist who hides suicide bombs under his robe!
The report makes clear that this has nothing to do with suspected terrorism at all. No, it seems that "the pope has been of interest to the US secret services since 2005 and that the calls from the Italian bishops and cardinals were divided into four areas of interest: Leadership intentions, threats to financial systems, foreign policy objectives and human rights."
Now we know the truth. For the most part, US spies aren't worried about those who might be thinking of attacking the US or her allies. What they are really worried about are those who might muck up our economic hegemony by promoting subversive ideas like basic human rights!